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Working remotely: Continuous performance management strategies to support your employees

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Work­ing remote­ly is becom­ing a com­mon prac­tice in many orga­ni­za­tions right now. Although many have been pushed into this by the cri­sis we’re now fac­ing, it can be great for employ­ee morale as well as a great strat­e­gy to broad­en the tal­ent pool and cut costs. Tak­ing out dis­trac­tions that are asso­ci­at­ed with com­ing into the office — like long com­mutes or extend­ed chats in the kitchen — can help your employ­ees become more effi­cient. Work­ing remote­ly gives your employ­ees more auton­o­my by show­ing that the orga­ni­za­tion trusts them. This can be a key moti­va­tor and encour­ages loy­al­ty to a company. 

How­ev­er, work­ing remote­ly doesn’t come with­out its pit­falls. If your employ­ees are work­ing from home for a long peri­od of time, often they can start to feel like they aren’t doing enough, have a lack of pur­pose and clar­i­ty, and start to feel alien­at­ed. Accord­ing to research, 32% of UK work­ers say work­ing remote­ly means they can­not switch off in their per­son­al time. This is often because they feel like they aren’t doing enough which can cause anx­i­ety. The same research showed that 18% of peo­ple feel like they are under sur­veil­lance and 17% say it affects their sleep because it makes them feel anxious. 

How­ev­er, it doesn’t have to be this way. With good per­for­mance man­age­ment prac­tices, work­ing remote­ly can help increase employ­ee morale and pro­duc­tiv­i­ty. Tools like Clear Review for exam­ple, help sup­port employ­ees regard­less of where they are based due to its cloud-based nature and struc­tured con­ver­sa­tions, feed­back and goals. 

We’ll share with you some of the ways in which you can sup­port your employ­ees while they are work­ing remotely. 

Set clear objec­tives and goals

Clear goals and objec­tives can help an employ­ee feel a sense of pur­pose, as well as help them pri­ori­tise when they are work­ing from home. Research shows that only 7% employ­ees believe they need a man­ag­er present to be pro­duc­tive. How­ev­er, when you’re work­ing remote­ly, there still needs to be guid­ance from man­agers so that employ­ees can pri­ori­tise their tasks.

By set­ting clear goals, you are cre­at­ing deliv­er­ables that can be ticked off” — help­ing your employ­ees feel a sense of achieve­ment. Every com­pa­ny varies in how they set goals. Some set SMART goals, some com­pa­nies may use oth­er meth­ods for goal set­ting. But the bot­tom line is that your employ­ees should feel clar­i­ty with their tasks and have a way to mea­sure their success. 

With Clear Review, your employ­ees and man­agers can cre­ate goals, whether they are agile, OKRs, per­son­al devel­op­ment or team goals. Track­ing your progress in the sys­tem and tick­ing off tasks and actions towards goals can help your employ­ees feel moti­vat­ed. It’s a way to give employ­ees clar­i­ty on their deliv­er­ables and removes the con­cern of am I doing enough?”

Tri­al Clear Review for two months!

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Give reg­u­lar feedback

When your employ­ees are work­ing remote­ly, often they can feel in the dark about their per­for­mance, espe­cial­ly if they aren’t get­ting the reg­u­lar ver­bal feed­back that they get in the office. Reg­u­lar feed­back can help your employ­ees per­form bet­ter and push them to work hard­er if they feel their efforts are being recog­nised. Feed­back can also help employ­ees feel more moti­vat­ed with one study reveal­ing that 68% of employ­ees who receive reg­u­lar feed­back feel more ful­filled in their jobs.

Through Clear Review, employ­ees can give each oth­er and request real-time feed­back to help recog­nise achieve­ments which can improve per­for­mance and engage­ment. Feed­back is also tied to com­pa­ny val­ues. Often when you are work­ing remote­ly, you can feel dis­tant from the com­pa­ny val­ues and its cul­ture, so this is a great way to rein­force them. 

Have reg­u­lar conversations

Work­ing remote­ly can some­times feel like a bless­ing and a curse. Work­ing from home has some pos­i­tives, such as the reduced per­son­al stress of com­mut­ing or punc­tu­al­i­ty. How­ev­er, it can also make you feel lone­ly and iso­lat­ed. The lack of face-to-face com­mu­ni­ca­tion that oth­er­wise hap­pens in the office, makes it hard­er for employ­ees work­ing remote­ly to com­mu­ni­cate with their man­agers. Those quick cof­fee chats in the office need to be replaced when your employ­ees are work­ing from home. The dif­fer­ence with work­ing from home is that these con­ver­sa­tions need to be more struc­tured and booked in so that it actu­al­ly takes place.

These con­ver­sa­tions could be about an employ­ee’s pri­or­i­ties, issues that they are fac­ing, as well as well­be­ing and devel­op­ment con­ver­sa­tions. Well­be­ing con­ver­sa­tions are impor­tant when you are work­ing remote­ly because often your employ­ees might feel iso­lat­ed. It’s always good to check up on them and see if they are speak­ing to their friends or going out for fresh air.

The great thing about a tool like Clear Review is that you have the flex­i­bil­i­ty to choose between dif­fer­ent types of con­ver­sa­tions and make a record of them — regard­less of where you are. Just because you are work­ing remote­ly or have teams that work remote­ly, it doesn’t mean you can’t have those reg­u­lar con­ver­sa­tions that you would have had if you were in the office.

Find how out how Clear Review can help remote workers

We are offer­ing a two-month free tri­al of Clear Review, to help your employ­ees con­nect more with each oth­er, feel moti­vat­ed and engaged, and per­form at their best. 

I want a two-month free trial!

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