Flexjobs: 5 Ways to Effectively Lead Remote Teams

by Carol Cochran, Director of People & Culture and a contributing writer at FlexJobs, originally published by Kin

If you’ve ever managed an in-office team before, you know that it’s fairly different from managing a remote one. But if you want to get the most out of your telecommuting staff, here are five remote team leadership best practices to follow.

Be realistic—and respectful.

By its very nature, having a remote staff means that your workers have greater autonomy and control over their schedules. And because they are able to balance their work needs with their personal ones, they have more time to take care of the things that truly matter. At FlexJobs, we’ve seen people work from hospital rooms while a family member recovers from major surgery and from hotel rooms while searching for a loved one who has disappeared. We’ve even had a director working from bed as she recovered from a mastectomy and reconstructive surgery. The ability to keep working actually helped them get through difficult times and situations. Knowing that your workers will use their time off to take care of personal matters or pursue their interests—and still get their work done—can help reinforce a strong bond between managers and their teams.

Focus on talent, not location.

One of the biggest benefits of having a remote team is the ability to hire top-tier talent no matter where they are located. So even if you’d ideally like to hire someone who lives somewhat near your company’s headquarters (if you still have a brick-and-mortar one) or if you’re looking for workers who live near each other, it’s best to focus on hiring the best worker for the position with no geographical boundaries. And once you hire remote workers, encourage them to get out into the world! We’ve had people working from the beaches in Hawaii, on summer-long road trips across the United States, and in the mountains of Germany. We really encourage people to take advantage of the fact that they can work from any location with Internet access.

Continue reading… Kin.

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