Manage-from-Home Tips

Bitmoji image of Grace working from home.I’ve started a new week-daily post on LinkedIn and Facebook under the hashtag #TheLeadershipGeekWorksFromHome.

I invite you to follow the hashtag on either (or both!) platforms.

What will you be getting? Here are the first eight tips:

1. Reach out daily to check in

Don’t wait for your team members to contact you. There are a host of reasons why they might not, including not knowing if you’re available, not wanting to bother you, and so on. As the manager, be proactive.

2. Encourage virtual coffee meetings, lunch dates, happy hour get-togethers.

Why not schedule one with a couple of work friends on the weekend? It would be a great alternative to binging Netflix!

3. Conduct daily 15-minute check-in meetings.

Maybe there’s a status update, maybe not. Just get everyone on a videoconference call and let each other know that you’re still here, still a team, still all in it together.

Now more than ever, seeing faces and making the connection is important.

4. About those daily meetings…

Open up videoconference “rooms” ten minutes early to allow people to come in ahead of a meeting and socialize IF they want to!

5. When you start a meeting – any meeting!

And even if it’s on old-skool telephones instead of video ? – first go around the “room” and ask everyone for an indicator of how they’re feeling.

NOT with a description. With ONE WORD:

This is a non-threatening way of giving each other a clue as to how they’re doing. You can follow up individually later with the Red and Yellow – and maybe Pass – people to see what you can do to support them, if you’re so inclined, but in the meeting itself, no further update is required.

6. Managing across time zones

If you have employees in different time zones, rotate your meeting times so they’re not always favoring just one time, while making other people either get up at oh-dark-thirty or work into the evening.

7. Office Hours

Set office hours and show up on video for anyone who wants to drop in. Daily. Lock the meeting when someone arrives so they have private time – and others know to come back later.

This is the virtual equivalent of having an open-door policy, and it’s a great way to invite your team to just “drop by” as they would if you were all together at the office.

8. Non-work chit-chat is a good thing

Create opportunities for non-work chit-chat, such as would happen naturally in the office. For instance, if you use Slack, open channels for non-work topics – fitness, crafts, cooking, sports, music, and so on.

What are your ideas? Let’s connect!

Maintaining team morale is important at any time, and it’s especially important now when things are in such a surreal, anxiety-inducing state. I’ll be continuing to post these tips on LinkedIn and Facebook, so by all means follow the hashtag AND connect with me on either or both platforms to share your tips!