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Tuesday 05 Jan 21

The TakeawayWhat Mistakes Might You Be Making As a Remote Manager?

Common Remote Management Mistakes

88% of organisations worldwide have encouraged employees to work from home since the COVID-19 pandemic was announced earlier this year.

Before 2020, only 3.4% of employees worked remotely, meaning an increase of 84.6% in remote working this year.

With many leaders managing remote teams for the first time, several common remote management mistakes have come to light.

What mistakes might you be making as a remote manager?

Neglecting Communication with Employees

When managing remote teams, the phrase “out of sight, out of mind” can easily become a reality.

Remote working eliminates the opportunity for casual chats in the office and quick check-ins, meaning that actively scheduling time to catch-up with employees is an integral aspect of effective remote management.

A lack of communication with remote teams may leave employees feeling unmotivated, isolated and forgotten about. 

It’s also critical to balance casual check-ins with formal meetings to ensure that your communication with employees doesn’t become solely transactional.

“Communication is the real work of leadership.” Nitin Nohria

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” George Bernard Shaw

Micromanaging Employees

On the other hand, you may instead find yourself over-communicating with employees and being at risk of micromanaging.

Some managers may believe that constantly checking-in with employees and knowing what they are doing at all times will increase productivity when in reality, it will just likely frustrate employees and make them feel untrusted.

“A team is not a group of people who work together. It is a group of people who trust each other.” Simon Sinek

The key to avoiding micromanagement is being able to recognise and overcome micromanagerial tendencies.

“A boss who micromanages is like a coach who wants to get in the game. Leaders guide and support then sit back to cheer from the sidelines” Simon Sinek

Lack of Feedback

89% of employees report wanting more feedback now that they are working remotely.

Every employee, remote or not, needs regular feedback, praise and criticism.

Feedback helps motivate teams and keep them working hard as it allows you to praise employees, give recognition for their accomplishments, and raise any concerns you may have regarding their performance.

“Feedback, when given well, should not alienate the receiver but should motivate them to perform better.”

“I think it’s very important to have a feedback loop where you’re constantly thinking about what you’ve done and how you could be doing it better.” Elon Musk

The Key to Successful Remote Management

While remote management is a complex role with many different possible approaches, there are three things you should remember:

  • Communicate frequently and effectively

  • Trust your remote employees

  • Grow and improve both as a team and individually

“There is always space for improvement, no matter how long you’ve been in the business.” Oscar De La Hoya

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