With only a few weeks left before the end of summer, many businesses are still reeling from the challenge of working remotely. Managers and business owners alike have had the difficult task of trying to keep their business as normal as possible, all while supporting their teams now working in a new, disconnected environment and adjusting to a fluctuating economy. After nearly five months of managing teams from home, there are many lessons learned that can help any business continue to flourish in the future – whether continuing to work remotely or heading back into the office.
Working remotely – while maybe not ideal – is possible
The opportunity to work remotely was a perk that many employees were interested in, but companies were hesitant to move forward with, as they believed productivity and focus would suffer. However, what this pandemic has taught businesses is that through an adjusted mindset, and after mastering a few new tools like Zoom, Teams, and Skype, employees could still complete their work successfully. While the preferred method of running a business is within the office environment, this experience has opened up options for working remotely or even hiring fully remote candidates.
Trust your team and hiring decisions
Being forced to work remotely for nearly half of a year could be summed up as a giant team-bonding experience for many businesses. In this exercise, managers have learned that working remotely takes a lot of trust. It’s important that management not only trusts their teams to get their work done and work responsibly, but also trusts that they’ve made good hiring decisions. As this article from Inc.com states, “There’s a reason you hired them in the first place, so equip them to do their jobs and hold them accountable.” This trust enables team members to work successfully on their own and with their remote co-workers as well.
Clear communication works best
If communication isn’t clear from the start, relaying the details of a project while working remotely can turn into a game of telephone tag. At the start of the work-from-home mandate, teams quickly realized that having a central online meeting platform helped to keep everyone on the same page. Of course, as all companies are different, mastering several different video conferencing platforms is important. When it comes to internal communication, utilizing one platform like Slack provides clarity and more concise messaging.
Keeping a pulse on new technology is just as important as ever
To further stress the importance of clear communication, a lot of businesses found that learning new platforms like Teams, GoToMeetings (GoToMeeting), or Zoom was necessary to stay connected while working remotely. This opened a new world of communications possibilities that many might have ignored before, as virtual meetings were more of a luxury addition than a necessity. Teams were forced to think outside of the box and, for some, to realize that there’s always a new piece of technology or a new skill to master.
An elevated understanding of technology came in handy for companies that continued to hire during the pandemic, either for temp-staffing needs or for permanent placements. Staffing agencies like TriStarr adapted to hosting all interviews and meetings virtually, and many companies followed suit. By keeping teams skilled in virtual communications technology, staffing agencies and companies alike were able to continue their recruiting, hiring and onboarding initiatives seamlessly while maintaining safe practices.
Set realistic expectations – and give yourself a break
Perhaps the most important lesson learned throughout this pandemic has been learning to cope with change. The best managers proved to be those who set realistic expectations for their teams and showed grace, knowing that working at full capacity wouldn’t always be possible. Between team members who had children at home or had connectivity issues while on team calls, working remotely has had its challenges. Companies that have made serenity a priority are thriving in these changing work conditions. This is a lesson that can be adapted as businesses return to the office. Understanding that there are times when going with the flow is necessary has had a big impact on happiness and culture in the workplace.
TriStarr is consistently ranked as one of the best staffing agencies in the Lancaster, Pennsylvania area. Skilled in customer service and consulting, TriStarr’s teams are able to offer expertise in staffing services, recruiting, HR management, hiring needs, and temp-staffing. If your business is in need of finding top talent for any open positions, or for insights on best practices when it comes to working remotely and managing remote teams, TriStarr can help. Interested candidates seeking work can also apply on our website for any open positions available. Contact us today to see how we can partner together.