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Master the Art of Keeping Your Remote Team Engaged: Expert Tips on How to Engage Remote Employees

Apr 28, 2023 · 5 min read

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The rise of remote work has drastically changed the way businesses operate. With more and more employees working from home, it's become increasingly important for companies to master the art of remote employee engagement. As a manager or team leader, it's essential to understand the unique challenges and opportunities of remote employee engagement. Remote employees may face feelings of isolation, communication barriers, and a lack of motivation. However, when businesses know how to engage remote employees, they'll be able to unlock the full potential of their remote workforce, leading to increased productivity, innovation, and job satisfaction.

As Enty’s team operates from all over the globe, we’d like to share some expert tips on how to engage remote employees effectively.

Challenges of engaging remote employees

Engaging remote employees comes with its own set of challenges. One of the most significant difficulties is communication. Without face-to-face interactions and daily check-ins, it can be tough to maintain a strong connection with remote employees. Misunderstandings and miscommunications can arise, leading to frustration and disengagement.

Another challenge is maintaining a strong remote team culture. When employees work remotely, they often miss out on the chance to build relationships and camaraderie with their colleagues. This can lead to feelings of isolation and detachment, making it difficult for remote employees to feel like they're part of the team.

Lastly, it can be challenging for remote employees to stay motivated and engaged in their work. The lack of structure and routine that comes with remote work can make it difficult to stay focused and driven, leading to dips in productivity and performance.

Importance of remote employee engagement for businesses

Remote employee engagement is essential for businesses for several reasons. Firstly, engaged employees are more likely to be productive and high-performing. When employees are engaged, they're more focused on their tasks, more innovative, and more willing to go the extra mile for their team and organization. This can lead to increased profitability and a more competitive business.

Secondly, remote employee engagement is crucial for employee retention. When employees feel connected, valued, and motivated, they're more likely to remain with their organization for the long term. This can save businesses time and money by reducing turnover and recruitment costs.

Lastly, a strong remote team culture can help businesses attract top talent. When a company is known for its positive work environment and engaged remote workforce, it can become a more desirable place to work, drawing in the best and brightest candidates.

Tips on how to engage remote employees effectively

To engage remote employees effectively, it's essential to focus on communication, team culture, recognition and rewards, professional development, and monitoring engagement levels. Here are some expert tips to help you master the art of remote employee engagement:

  • Establish clear communication channels: Ensure that remote employees have access to the necessary tools and platforms to communicate with their colleagues and managers effectively. This can include video conferencing, instant messaging, and project management software. Encourage regular check-ins and updates to keep everyone in the loop and foster a sense of connection.

  • Set expectations and goals: Clearly outline the expectations and goals for remote employees, including performance metrics, deadlines, and communication guidelines. This helps create a sense of structure and accountability, which can be motivating for remote workers.

  • Encourage collaboration: Promote a collaborative environment by assigning team projects and encouraging remote employees to work together. This can help build relationships and teamwork, leading to increased engagement and job satisfaction.

  • Offer flexibility: Remote employees often value the flexibility that comes with working from home. Allowing employees to set their own schedules or work during their most productive hours can foster a sense of trust and autonomy, leading to higher engagement levels.

  • Maintain a healthy work-life balance: Encourage remote employees to establish boundaries between work and personal life. This can help prevent burnout and maintain a sense of balance, which is essential for employee engagement.

Communication strategies for remote employee engagement

Effective communication is the foundation of remote employee engagement. Here are some communication strategies to help keep your remote employees engaged:

Implement regular check-ins: Schedule weekly or bi-weekly check-ins with remote employees to discuss progress, challenges, and goals. This can help maintain a sense of connection and support, as well as provide an opportunity for feedback and coaching.

Utilize video conferencing: Whenever possible, use video conferencing for meetings and check-ins. This allows for more personal interactions and helps to build rapport among team members.

Encourage open communication: Promote a culture of open communication where remote employees feel comfortable sharing their thoughts, ideas, and concerns. This can help address any issues before they escalate and foster a sense of trust and collaboration.

Recognize and address communication challenges: Be aware of potential communication challenges, such as time zone differences or language barriers, and take proactive steps to address them. This may include scheduling meetings at convenient times for all team members or providing language support when necessary.

Building a strong remote team culture

A strong remote team culture is essential for employee engagement. Here are some tips for building a positive and inclusive remote team culture:

Organize virtual team-building activities: Schedule regular virtual team-building activities, such as online games, group discussions, or virtual team lunches. These events can help remote employees get to know one another, build relationships, and foster a sense of camaraderie.

Celebrate milestones and achievements: Recognize and celebrate team and individual accomplishments, such as project completions, work anniversaries, or personal milestones. This can help build a sense of pride and unity among remote team members.

Encourage inclusivity: Make an effort to include remote employees in all aspects of the team culture, such as decision-making processes, team celebrations, and feedback sessions. This can help remote employees feel valued and included, leading to increased engagement.

Focus on shared values and goals: Clearly communicate the team's values and goals and ensure that remote employees feel connected to the overall mission and vision of the organization. This can help create a sense of purpose and belonging.

Professional development opportunities for remote employees

Providing professional development opportunities for remote employees can help them grow in their roles, increase job satisfaction, and boost engagement. Here are some ideas for offering professional development opportunities:

Offer online training and workshops: Provide remote employees with access to online training courses, webinars, and workshops relevant to their roles and interests. This can help them stay up-to-date with industry trends and develop new skills.

Provide opportunities for cross-functional collaboration: Encourage remote employees to work on projects or tasks outside of their primary responsibilities. This can help them gain new skills and experiences, as well as build relationships with colleagues in other departments.

Support remote employees in pursuing certifications or further education: Offer financial assistance or flexible scheduling to enable remote employees to pursue relevant certifications or further education. This can help them advance their careers and increase their value to the organization.

Establish a mentorship program: Pair remote employees with more experienced colleagues who can provide guidance, support, and coaching. This can help remote employees learn from the expertise of others and develop their skills and career paths.

Monitoring remote employee engagement levels

Regularly monitoring remote employee engagement levels can help you identify and address any issues before they escalate. Here are some strategies for measuring and monitoring remote employee engagement:

Conduct employee surveys: Use anonymous surveys to gauge remote employees' satisfaction, motivation, and overall engagement. This can provide valuable insights into areas that may need improvement.

Monitor performance metrics: Track remote employees' performance metrics, such as productivity, quality of work, and goal attainment. This can help you identify trends and areas for improvement.

What we do at Enty

Basically, we utilize most of the methods mentioned above. But to be more specific, let us tell what we are doing to keep our team strong even if we are thousands of kilometers away from each other.

Random coffee events once in 2 weeks: once in two weeks our whole team is divided into groups of 3 or 4 people where we share some personal stories. During these meeting we try to keep it as non work-related as possible.

We host online meetings once in a month: we meet on Friday after work. Sometimes, we can can just have a beer or wine and chat or play some online games. Participation is completely voluntary which is a key to make this activities fun.

Small talk is appreciated at the start of the team meetings: before starting regular check-in call, all teams try to talk about what’s going with us personally. This helps us know each other better.

We meet in person at least once a year: these meetings are unforgettable and help us to be stronger and have some memories that we share with each other.

Separate channel is Slack for non work-related banter: we have active channel in Slack where we share jokes, memes, and photos of our pets!

Conclusion: Sustaining long-term remote employee engagement

Mastering the art of remote employee engagement is crucial for businesses looking to harness the full potential of their remote workforce. By focusing on communication, team culture, recognition and rewards, professional development, and monitoring engagement levels, you can create an environment where remote employees feel connected, valued, and motivated.

Enty won't be able to help you establish relationship with your employees. However, our HR tool will help you to simplify hiring to the max. Explore Enty and explore how we can ease up back-office management for your company.
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