Productivity is a concept that has long been viewed as the gold standard in businesses. However, with so many businesses currently transferring to remote operations in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic, it can be challenging for all involved to work as productively as they would while in the office. On the other side of the coin, the right behaviors can make it quite effective. Let’s review a few suggestions that can help you ensure that your workforce is ready to work remotely and on how to achieve productivity while working remotely.
Communication is Even More Important
Productivity while working remotely can be challenging unless your employees are completely self-sufficient in their responsibilities (which is incredibly unlikely), they are going to need to interact with their co-workers, as well as numerous contacts outside of the organization. This need doesn’t just go away once they happen to be working from home, either.
As a result, it is crucial that there are open lines of communication between and amongst your team members, and that they are used extensively, almost excessively.
Why is that? Simply put, to make up for the vast amount of in-person communication that you lose during this period. With your team surrounding you, it is much easier to share ideas and collaborate. When working remotely, it isn’t so convenient to do so, passing up great opportunities.
Therefore, it is only more important that you reinforce good communication habits, to the point that they become an integral part of the daily workflow. Make sure your team knows what options are available to them, in terms of communication, and that they are using them as often as needed. Using a software like Zoom, Slack, or Teams that promotes communication can work well.
Flexibility is a Benefit
Of course, not every employee works the same way. Some may find that different schedules are more effective than others, something that the office environment may not always allow. When your team is working from home, however, they can enjoy a greater opportunity to shift their schedule to meet their own productivity patterns. As long as the job gets done, right?
This can even assist employees when they have other obligations to fulfill. If someone in your office has a dentist appointment, instead of taking time off and ultimately costing the both of you (them in missed wages, and you in productivity), this employee could instead work from home before and after their appointment to make up the time that would otherwise be missed. Everybody wins!
Make sure that your team is aware of more than just the potential to sit in their pajamas all day, that remote working can be used to improve their work/life balance and allow them to prevent any consequences derived from missing time in the office. Letting employees work on their own schedules compared to a 9-5 may actually work better.
One of the biggest hurdles many organizations have had to overcome if they are serious about implementing remote work is the idea that it is too easy for an employee to become distracted when they aren’t in the office. Make sure that your employees remember how anything can seem preferable to the task they want to do, including household chores, but also that this phenomenon can just as easily happen in the office. The presence of family members can also contribute to some pretty significant distractions (most everyone has seen the BCC interview with Professor Robert Kelly where his young children barged in and stole the show), but also has the potential to help keep you accountable (“Shouldn’t you be working?”). Encourage your employees to recruit their family members to do the latter.
How to achieve productivity while working remotely? Productivity is possible from anywhere, as long as you have the tools and strategies in place to enable it. Even with the coronavirus already active, Symmetric IT Group’s services can help you put these resources into action for your company. To learn more, reach out to our team by calling (813) 749-0895.