Extending Workplace Culture To Remote Workers
Up until recently, your company operated as a brick-and-mortar business. But after doing your due diligence and seeing competitors thrive by offering remote work opportunities to their employees, you’re ready to adopt some flexible work policies of your own and put them into practice. You’re concerned, though, that your company culture might get lost in the transition. Here are four tips on how to translate your culture to a remote workplace.
Create constant communication.
At your office, your employees gathered around the water cooler/coffee machine/fridge and talked about work, their interests, etc. But without a proverbial water cooler to hang around, your team could lose touch with each other, causing a negative impact on your bottom line. That’s why one of the first things to put into place when allowing some (or all) of your employees to work remotely is communication tools. You don’t want just any ol’ apps, though; you want proven communication tools that make sense for your company. So test drive a few before incorporating them into your workflow; many remote companies swear by Google Hangouts, GitHub, Slack, Sococo, and Yammer.
Make it personal.
Whether your company is already fully remote or planning to become so eventually, it’s important you don’t lose that personal touch with your employees. Why? Studies have shown that remote workers who feel they are heard, respected, and play a vital role to the overall success of the organization often outperform employees who work in a traditional office. So make sure you recognize your employees for both their professional and personal accomplishments. For example, if someone recently had a birthday, you can send flowers, like FlexJobs does. By reminding employees of their importance to your organization, you can ensure a loyal and dedicated staff who cares about your company’s bottom line and success just as much as you do.
You can boast about a workforce that stretches out to all corners of the globe. But just because you have employees in Panama and Poughkeepsie, NY, doesn’t mean they never have to see each other. When possible, encourage your employees to get together for informal meet-ups. At Help Scout, Content Marketer Paul Jun says, “Alongside the two retreats a year, we have our Friday Fikas, and randomly we’ll do something where everyone can go to the movies on Friday or maybe a dinner is on the company.” Don’t think that this doesn’t benefit you as an employer; by having your team get together on occasion, they will not only reinforce their bonds as coworkers, but as a team as well.
In a regular brick-and-mortar biz, information is often disseminated via in-person meetings, memos, emails, and face-to-face conversations. Having a remote workforce shouldn’t be a roadblock to communicating with your team, though. In order for the company as a whole (and your team too) to do well, it’s imperative to keep all of your employees in the loop at all times. This means updating them on initiatives, keeping them abreast of policy changes, and letting them know about more productive methods to improve their workflow. All of this can help keep your company’s culture alive—and thriving.
It’s super important to nurture your company’s culture in a remote work environment. With some planning and practice, your company’s culture will rival any competitor’s traditional office set-up—and far surpass it.