If you’re not engaging remote employees, you’re shooting yourself in the foot.
Disengaged employees cost companies a whopping $550 billion a year in lost productivity.
Disengaged workers make 2.5X less revenue.
Hyper-engaged staffers are 87% less likely to jump ship.
But, engaging remote employees doesn’t come easy to most companies. Lava lamps and ping-pong tables won’t cut it here.
Don’t stress. You’re a quick scroll-down away from learning how to keep remote staffers glowing.
Help Them Feel Connected
Meet Mia—nice transparent eyeglass frames. She’s a rockstar with a plethora of skills on her resume that chose to enter the digital nomad lifestyle. The problem? Mia feels removed from the team. She isn’t aware of your managerial expectations, let alone what her peers work on.
The result? Your efforts for engaging remote employees drops off a cliff. Thud. The good news is you can flip things around and help Mia feel connected. Here’s how:
Introduce OKRTs (Objective-Key Result-Tasks). It's a management system developed by Andy Grove at Intel. OKRTs help get both Mia and regular staffers on the same page, KPIs-wise. You can learn more about OKRTs here.
Run regular 1:1s. Set up a recurring 30-min, weekly meeting with Mia. It’ll help you keep her in the loop and gauge how she’s doing within the role. Check this guide for 1:1 questions.
Once Mia feels she’s a true member of the team, engagement will rise from its ashes.
It’s a no-brainer that you should recognize remote employees' wins.
The problem? Mia doesn’t always receive recognition for her killer performance. That makes her want to eat bubble wrap and lose steam. So, make a point to give a digital pat for Mia’s plethora of contributions. Here are three battle-tested ways to do it:
Set up a #kudos channel in Slack. It’ll help you call out Mia’s wins on a team-wide scale.
Take advantage of Bonusly. It’s an advanced recognition platform that lets you spotlight remote employees' wins to the whole company.
Go on social media. Show appreciation to Mia by giving her a shoutout on Twitter, LinkedIn, or Facebook. Public recognition is ultra-powerful.
When Mia feels you value her work, it’ll inject antidote for her disengagement.
Pave the Way for Growth
Mia hates to be in a rut. Like 80% of staffers, she might throw in the towel and move on if she doesn’t grow.
Your job? Provide Mia with opportunities for professional growth.
As Pete Sosnowski, Head of HR and Co-Founder at Zety puts it, “Prove to your employees you care about their professional growth and development and you’ll see them go full steam ahead.”
Here are some employee growth ideas:
Sign Mia up for an online course. Check out Coursera or Futurelearn learning platforms and let Mia soak up the knowledge from the comfort of her home.
Hire an industry expert. Get a pro on board to mentor Mia online.
Send her off to a meetup or conference. It’ll help learn something new or pick a skill or two.
Keep Your Finger on the Pulse
So far so good. You’ve walked the extra mile to kick Mia engaged. The question is, did it work out?
See, you can’t just approach Mia and ask how engaged she is now on a scale of 1 to 10 because engagement is a complex emotion that’s hard to measure.
The good news is you can get a reading of her engagement levels. All it takes is to send the occasional employee pulse survey.
It’ll help gather insights via a set of indirect questions.
Mia will also see that you take steps to make sure she’s happy at work. That alone will torpedo disengagement in a heartbeat.
There you have it. A sizzling four tips on engaging remote employees.
Max Woolf is a career expert. He’s passionate about helping people land their dream jobs through the expert career industry coverage. In his spare time, Max enjoys biking and traveling to European countries. You can hit him up on LinkedIn.