Remote work has become the new routine for most employees, and for at least the next several weeks, this is the new reality. If you are manager, you still might be wondering how you can remotely manage your employees. Below we outline 5 best practices on managing employee performance during the coronavirus-induced quarantine.
1) Outline clear expectations
Clear expectations of deliverables and deadlines are key to avoiding confusion and holding employees accountable. Consistent 1-on-1 conversations can help clarify objectives and track progress in real-time – remember consistent check-ins should happen even if remote employees are successful at meeting targets.
2) Focus on output, not input
Remote or not, an employee’s performance should be determined by specific deliverables. An advantage of the remote work environment is that it forces managers to measure performance and productivity by these deliverables (instead of “time spent at the desk”). Managers should use their 1-on-1 check-ins to provide real-time support and guidance.
3) Provide effective feedback
Regardless of where your employees are, managers must support remote employees by giving them effective feedback. Remember that effective feedback is (i) constructive, (ii) objective, (iii) continuous, (iv) relevant, and (v) direct and kind.
4) Do not micromanage
Even from a distance, micromanaging can still happen.
As a manager, do you track the hours your employees work daily? Do you require your remote employees to cc you on every project-related email? Do you follow up with your employees after team videoconferences or conference calls to clarify certain points?
Simply put, a manager doesn’t need to check in too often for remote workers to feel like they’re being micromanaged. Setting clear expectations (point #1), having a strong line of communication, and providing effective feedback during weekly 1-on-1s can help curb micromanaging tendencies.
5) Have an ‘open door’ (figuratively speaking)
Encourage your employees to ask questions and request help. Have a clear communication process so employees know which digital channel to use for questions (Slack, email, etc). Moreover, ensure that pings, emails, and questions do not go unanswered.
How are you managing your remote employees?