5 Tips for Working Remotely During the COVID-19 Outbreak

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Many companies around the world have asked their employees to start working remotely during the coronavirus outbreak. For many people, working remotely has been a dream they’ve persuaded for a very long time. While there are many benefits to working remotely, there are also a lot of challenges that companies have to overcome, especially if it is their first time going remote.

If your company is one of them, make sure you read this article as we’ll be taking a look at some tips to make your company’s remote work experience as successful as it can be in times like these.

1. Establish Proper Communication Channels

Be clear with your people about how they can reach you. Whether it’s email, text, Slack, Zoom, or any other channel you prefer, make sure to tell your employees how they can reach you. Also, don’t expect people to answer instantly. Be mindful of their situation.

Make sure you often communicate with everyone. Now is not the right time to hold anything important from your employees. Share as much as possible to the point that it feels like you’re oversharing. 

2. Cut Everyone Some Slack

Some first-time remote workers have the tendency to overwork themselves, while others can feel isolated and lonely. Neither of these two states is good. As someone who manages people, it is your task to make sure that none of your employees are overworking themselves. You also need to try to make all of them feel better so that they could be more productive. Feeling lonely or stressed at times like these is perfectly normal. Be there for your employees and don’t expect everyone to be on top of their game all the time.

3. Track Time on Projects

To understand how your employees spend their time while at work, you need time tracking. When you are able to see which of their tasks take the most time, you can reflect and see if that time is well spent. Additional benefits of time tracking include the improvements in quality, efficiency, and effectiveness of the work your employees are doing. By tracking time you’ll ensure that none of your deadlines are missed.

To do this, most companies use some sort of time tracking software. Without it, it’s hard to accurately collect data about the duration of tasks. Incorrect project duration estimates could cost your company a lot of time and money.

4. Introduce Check-Ins

Remote companies usually have some sort of check-in between the manager and those directly reporting to them. You can do them in conjunction with your standard daily meetings. Establish how frequently you want to check-in with your employees. Three times a week is a good start. 

The check-ins can be very effective as they ensure that your employees have a specific time where they can give or receive feedback, raise concerns, or talk about anything else they’d like. These check-ins also establish a stronger connection between you and your employees. For check-ins, you can use any of the numerous video meeting apps available, with Zoom and Google Meets as the most popular choices.

5. Don’t Forget to Have Fun

To help everyone relieve themselves from stress, consider introducing non-work related video chats. These chats can happen once a month or more frequently, and are designated to help everyone blow off some steam and talk about all the new things happening in their lives. These can help everyone stay connected and build closer relationships with each other.

Think about hosting a sort of internal conference for your employees. Take some time to learn more about everyone. You can encourage people to host “ask me anything” sessions where their colleagues can ask them questions and learn more about what makes them so interesting. You could also host a non-topic video chat where you invite your colleagues to talk about any topic they like for a set amount of time. This will further strengthen the bond between coworkers.

Final Takeaways

While we have given you a few tips, set aside some time to figure out what works best for you and your employees. Now is a perfect time to experiment and figure out a sustainable pattern that you’ll be able to use in the following months of remote work. 

Also, don’t forget to embrace change. Remote work routines can get boring, so always try to do something now. Always try to have fun, especially in times like these!

Make sure you and your loved ones are safe and taken care of. Be there for your employees, be flexible and let them do their own thing.

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