Our new hybrid workplace challenges our ability to communicate with influence and truly connect. Relationships are easier to establish when we see peers in person, but what happens with employees who work remote?
Here are three ways leaders can develop relationships and grow their influence with remote employees.
Create team routines.
Have your team set aside the first thirty minutes of each workday to determine their top three priorities, review their daily calendar, and prepare for upcoming meetings.
Set aside the following thirty minutes for a brief team sync. This daily, predictable video chat will ensure you and your team remain on the same page with daily priorities. The repeated exposure to teammates and leadership will also help establish working relationships despite the distance.
Be responsive. Expect responsiveness.
Being an information bottleneck hinders team productivity, creating frustration. Determine a reasonable time frame team members must respond to questions or comments throughout the workday. Hold yourself accountable to the timeframe, too. For example, if you decide two hours provides enough time to respond to remote employee questions or comments, commit to it. Then, ask your team to do the same.
Your timely responsiveness will build trust among those who can’t interact with you in-person.
Ask for feedback. Offer encouragement.
Remote workers often feel isolated, especially from those who work face-to-face every day. As their leader, ask for frequent feedback to help bridge the gap. Determine the challenges they experience working remote. Commit to increasing your communication and accessibility as needed.
Offer encouragement. Explore creative ways for your team to develop better working relationships. Set aside the last five minutes of each weekly team meeting to share something personal to grow your relationships personally and professionally.
This week, put in place these three techniques to develop an influential relationship with remote employees based on trust, reliability, and responsiveness.