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Telecommute Trends Evolve

Telecommute Trends Evolve

Roughly 20% of American employees perform some amount of work remotely. That means one in five workers have flexibility with their work location, and which hours they work. Not surprising, 80-90% of those who don’t telecommute want to start—according to workforce data by Globalworkplaceanalytics.com. The big question is where is this headed and how does it impact performance management.

We know that remote workers will continue to play a significant role in corporate culture and that managing performance of remote workers requires a commitment to collaboration and communication.

Learn how one manager masters collaboration and communication

Scott manages a team that includes both on-site and remote employees. All of his team members start their work day at the same time. They all have assigned projects, responsibilities, and goals. They know their processes, and they rely on collaboration and communication to ensure the work gets done right.

To be successful, Scott applies his knowledge of performance management to each team member, regardless of their physical location. He uses the best practices for collaboration and communication when managing teams of on-site and remote workers.

While remote work programs offer companies opportunities to attract workers and retain talent, the evolution of telecommuting has already started to change the employment landscape. Employees are leaving their ‘home office’ to work in coop spaces serving hundreds of workers employed by unrelated employers.

Thankfully, technological advances will continue to reduce the distance between managers and team members. But, evolving remote work environments will demand that leaders lead effectively, forcing them to analyze their management activities, coaching skills and collaboration abilities.

Finally, here are some best practices for effectively managing teams, working on-site or remote:

  1. Commit time to Individual Touchbases. Establish a routine and calendared event and stick to it. Consider letting employees own the agenda for their touchbase. Online apps such as Microsoft OneNote make sharing and notetaking—even by phone—easy. A weekly touchbase with each employee for at least 15-20 minutes is recommended.
  2. Connect with Team Touchbases. Your team meeting does not always require face-to-face interaction. Simply set a day and time, ideally weekly, for a relay of important announcements and collaborative discussions. A best practice for team touchbases is for the leader to rotate responsibility of facilitating the meeting/call among team members.
  3. Continue Coaching, one-on-one. One of the most important management activities is to ensure a quarterly, at minimum, face-to-face conversation between manager and employee. This level of engagement builds relationships and allows for observation, review of activities and results, and development of action plans.
  4. Celebrate with Face-to-Face Team Meetings. Bringing Scott’s entire team together at least once each year, preferably twice, will provide the connection and collaboration that is essential to a winning team. Elements of both social and business activities can positively influence morale as well as overall productivity. Managers should always plan well, provide detailed agendas, and give specific expectations around their team meetings.

Center for Practical Management helps companies achieve organizational goals and behavior change initiatives through tailored consulting services, leadership coaching, employee skills training and marketing services. Learn more at www.cf-pm.com

Center for Practical Management is a strategic business partner with Raddon, a Fiserv Company. Learn more at www.raddon.com