Telecommuting doesn’t mean sleeping late and staying in your pajamas all day. A successful employee who works at home or outside of the general office needs to be a self-motivating, technologically-savvy and prioritized individual. Supervising or managing telecommuters calls for additional attention to the very situations that make this form of work unique. Encouraging efficiency and productivity in the telecommuter requires communication, structure, and a clear understanding of goals by management and employee.
The telecommuter needs to organize their day and personal working space in such a way that they have the tools and time needed for proper communication with coworkers. Clear understanding of how they will communicate – via phone calls, emails, instant messaging – is integral in successful telework. The interaction with coworkers is dual-purposed: it keeps an energy of camaraderie or teamwork present, and it keeps the telecommuter on task.
While it is important that the telecommuter be able to self-manage as much as possible, supervisors play a key role in furthering the output of those working from home or remote locations. Those managing teleworkers need to be able to effectively dictate what is required. There may be less time spent checking in on someone outside of the office; one needs to trust that physical time is being logged even if literally witnessing work being done is not possible. This is where, as www.telecommutingadvisor.com writes, the successful leader is able to manage outcomes, not just activities. When there is a clear line of communication and specific discussion of what is being achieved, there is less room for confusion and under-performance by the telecommuter.
Every company is different, and every business specifies what successful recognition of goals means for their individual organization. A teleworker should have a clear understanding of what his or her role in the company and required performance is. When supervising a telecommuter it is important to have measurable and time-specific goals. The employee must acknowledge what needs to be done and how long they have to achieve it in order to best manage his or her time.
Maintaining a clear set of incentives for the telecommuter is another supervisory strategy for maximizing effective work outside of the office. When telecommuting, an employee lacks the direct one-on-one contact with management and peers that may serve as reinforcement of good work or morale. Celebrating successes together is a suggestion from www.telecommutingadvisor.com, meaning that upon completion of large projects or successful endeavors the teams all come together for praise, reward, and acknowledgement. There may be many telecommuters working on a specific task who spend little time interacting together in the office, but whose work has nevertheless been cohesive and met a specific goal.
Telecommuters and those who manage them need to have an established sense of trust and mutual respect in order to ensure successful work results. Solid understanding of goals and the steps necessary to achieve them makes for a more productive teleworker.
Author: Stacia Argoudelis
Tags: flex time, goals, HR, management, performance, telecommuting, workplace