Many organisations have done well to embrace a blended approach to working whether it’s hybrid, or fully remote. And some businesses have struggled and are calling everyone back into the office – some at threat job loss.
My neighbour was sharing how his boss was struggling with leading remotely still, two plus years this new approach to working!
Feedback, setting Expecting and Delegating – FED – were three core people management elements where my neighbour’s boss, and many other leaders, have found it challenging to do effectively remotely.
There are 3 success factors common to giving feedback and having performance conversations, setting expectations, and delegating to a remote team.
Any leader who struggles with delegating, or feels like they have lost a sense of control because they can’t physically see their team members working, will at the core have an issue of trust. Where you have trust you will have less stress, a greater sense that everything is under control, and when (not if) something goes wrong, trust will ensure a faster, more efficient and cost effective remedy.
Trust comes from being consistent, reliable, genuine and helpful. Working on building a rapport is not time wasting socialising, it is fundamental to building trust that will make working with each other more productive.
In 2020 we flipped our world so quickly to minimise downtime and productivity loss using technology that many people have commented that they felt dizzy; incredulous at how fast the company reacted given work from home requests had previously been denied for years; or simply relieved.
Leveraging technology to collaborate should be about, as a team, finding ways to support, share and be productive. Encourage the camera to be on when having one on one meetings that are performance based or clarifying expectations. Email in these situations is as a follow up, like minutes to meeting, they don’t replace the meeting.
Technology that snoops, like key logging, keystrokes and internet searches, need to still comply with a fair use approach in a remote context. Keep in mind that working from home, makes work life and home life more blended.
The technology is for the productive completion of work, and as the leader when the focus is on outcome and is backed up with clear and consistent communication, the tools organisations use for monitoring will need to be relied on less.
Every employee will – should – know what and how the organisation monitors, from a technology perspective, and this should be made clear during onboarding, and notifications made as new tools are implemented.
Transparency in communication helps build and maintain trust. Inviting transparency is only one part of the equation, the leader who is also transparent will demonstrate that it is safe for the team to also be open and transparent. When setting expectations, giving feedback and delegating, be transparent about what you do and don’t know, or how you feel about a situation.
Be transparent about the WHY. Explaining the why helps people connect to and value the work, the situation or the issue at hand. Employees often complain about a lack of communication and clarity – talk about the why as much as the what and the how.
Being in an online meeting, even with the camera on, you know is not the same as being in the same room, so communicating more and being more vigilant with being clear and complete will help with three core parts of your role: FED.
I’d love to know your thoughts on the three T’s for effective remote F.E.D.
I appreciate you