To lead on a distance

2020-08-24

We are living in the middle of a pandemic and with that comes some recommendations and restrictions depend on where we are living. One of them are saying that if it´s possible we should work from home. Most of us aren´t used to that and with that comes a lot of responsibility, for both workers, HR-employees and managers. We decided to focus on what HR-employees and managers needs to know when it comes to lead on a distance.

We have outlined some points we think need extra focus. Here are 4 points for you how are a manager or in some way needs to lead on a distance.

Strategiskt arbete

1. Clarity of roles and tasks

Being clear is the key when it comes to leading on a distance. Go through with you employees individually what is expected from them in the next coming months and have continuous follow-up meetings. Don´t forget to collect what you have agreed on and bring that to your next meeting.

With that said, it´s also important that you trust your staff and let them know that you trust them. So, let go of the need of control and expect the staff to do their job.
At the same time, do not forget to show interest and let them know that you are there if they need you.

2. Take advantage of the digital tools

The social part easily disappears when you do not meet in the office. Therefore, use the digital tools to not lose it!
In an office it´s easy to just ask a quick question in the hallway but when you work from home that step seams so much bigger, especially via email. Because you don´t want you email be full of that kind of questions, right?

To prevent this from happening, we suggest using a chat platform, such as Slack or Teams. hen you will receive a notice and can quickly answer the questions or ask a question back. It´s so much more efficient than emailing back and forth. You can also create groups if you are working in teams. Another thing is that you can easily share files and document.

One other digital tool that you probably already are familiar with are video calls in Zoom and Teams. Try to start your meetings by asking your staff how everyone is doing, have they done anything fun during the weekend or have anything interesting news. That will bring the team together and get some team-spirit!
And do not forget to put the camera on! It is so much more fun to talk to a face then to a picture.

3. Ask how everyone is feeling

When we don´t see each other on a daily basis it may be a good idea to not only talk about tasks and job related stuff but to open up to the question of how everyone is feeling.

Maybe someone in your staff has become, or knows someone, who has been affected by Covid-19 or feels worried about the situation.
Therefore, it is important that you as a manager or team leader listens carefully to your staff. It will mean a lot to them just to know that you will be there if they have something to say, both now and in the future.

4. Don´t forget to celebrate

It could be a challenge when we work from home but if someone has done something good and reach a goal you have to celebrate! It could be a goal or a success that you usually celebrate with cake at the office – change that and send out flowers, a gift card, have a digital after work or a well selected GIF in an email. As you all know, it is the thought that counts, so don’t forget to celebrate!

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