Motivating a workforce to innovate while ensuring productivity and collaboration is easier said than done, but creating an environment and culture that encourages employees to do well in their role is the first step to a loyal, purpose-driven, and satisfied organization. The added benefits of retaining top talent are countless—from reduced turnover costs to employee wellbeing. If your organization is planning for growth, employee engagement is the investment you need to make.
Here Are 10 Emotionally Intelligent Ways to Engage Remote Workers:
1. Set Clear Expectations
Although remote work provides a lot more flexibility, employees still need defined values, goals, and objectives, as well as a clear understanding of what is expected of them within their role, department, and the organization as whole.
2. Stay Connected
We are fortunate to have access to a plethora of digital tools and platforms that enable us to work remotely in efficient ways. Effective communication and collaboration through video calls, meetings, and instant messaging have made it possible to work on the same projects simultaneously despite being apart. Don’t forget the importance of checking in to see how colleagues are doing and providing support where you can.
3. Trust Your People
With a change in the routine of everyday work, it's important to uphold an atmosphere of mutual trust within your organization. Believing in your employees’ abilities to follow through aligns culture and practices for your people and fosters mutual respect and trust through accountability, effectively eliminating the need for micromanagement.
4. Manage Accomplishments, Not Activity
Waiting to give feedback on project milestones of your employees’ efforts is far more efficient than managing every little task along the way. Developing trust in any employee-leader relationship starts with giving up control of the small stuff to allow employees the freedom to be creative and innovate to successfully reach their goals.
5. Encourage Growth and Learning
Creating a culture of learning and development in your organization shows employees that you appreciate their investment in you and in turn are invested in them. When employees are confident in their leaderships’ support to learn new skills and grow within their roles, it only further motivates them to achieve more.
6. Give and Receive Feedback
Giving periodic feedback and checking in with employees is a managerial must-have, but it is also an excellent opportunity to receive feedback and give credence to their opinion of your performance.
7. Take Breaks (and Deep Breaths)
It is hard to separate work stress from home stress when working in your personal space every day. Remind yourself and your employees that no one is on call 24/7 just because they can be reached at all times and are likely near their computer outside normal hours.
8. Emphasize Workplace Culture
Accentuating organizational culture motivates employees toward a shared vision and goal through best practices, group norms, and values.
9. Encourage Volunteering
Looking beyond our own needs and feelings is critical for emotional intelligence at an individual and an organizational level. Working together to achieve socially responsible goals brings about an increase in teamwork, camaraderie, and togetherness.
10. Celebrate People
Employees are the driving force behind every successful organization, so don’t forget the human side of your business. Celebrate accomplishments, birthdays, retirements, newcomers, and more. Make their important moments matter to the company and show it through recognition, a kind gesture, or a small celebration.
Showing empathy to one another, working together as a team, and understanding that there are bound to be circumstances beyond our personal locus of control are the keys to having an emotionally intelligent organization.