You're Hired, Now Go Home: Managing Workers at a Distance
Telecommuting or virtual work opens up a wider net of potential employees for businesses - the disabled, the stay-at-home parent, the student, the retired, the flextime person, etc. However, it also creates unique challenges in hiring, supporting and managing this new group of workers. Here are six tips on managing workers at a distance.
Select the right employees.
Spell out expectations.
Get them off to a good start.
Don't forget introductions.
Set up structures to support self-sufficiency.
Keep in touch.
Managing at a distance, it's really no different from managing in the office. Good managers set expectations, monitor progress, give feedback, and do all the other basic managerial tasks for employees no matter where they work.
A side benefit for managers of telecommuters is that they often find they have more time for their own work now that they are spending less time in direct supervision of office staff. This is a big advantage in today's lean, flat organizations.
Marcia Zidle, the 'people smarts' coach, works with business leaders to quickly solve their people management headaches so they can concentrate on their #1 job to grow and increase profits. She offers free help through Leadership Briefing, a weekly e-newsletter with practical tips on leadership style, employee motivation, recruitment and retention and relationship management. Subscribe by going to http://leadershiphooks.com/ and get the bonus report "61 Leadership Time Savers and Life Savers". Marcia is the author of the What Really Works Handbooks resources for managers on the front line and the Power-by-the-Hour programs fast, convenient, real life, affordable courses for leadership and staff development. She is available for media interviews, conference presentations and panel discussions on the hottest issues affecting the workplace today. Contact Marcia at 800-971-7619.
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