Remote work is going to be around for a while. Even though it sounds like a cliché, it’s the reality.
Shopify, Facebook, Twitter and other majors have confirmed their support for remote job for everyone or a portion the employees.
Waitrose admits to preventing rivals from opening their own stores
Small and large companies restructure their work processes in order to adjust to the changing regularity of meeting via Zoom and online conferences have become an everyday thing. What happens if you have a remote team that is distributed across the globe, so that when one team checks the inbox while enjoying their morning morning coffee while another is closing in at the end of their day?
How to manage the work of remote teams can be differently for different brands, dependent on the specific business requirements and the size of the team. Here are 5 suggestions to help businesses create an environment that is stress-free and provide a more enjoyable life-style for their employees.
#1. Be aware of the synchronous schedule
The year 2021 was the one in which Portugal became the talk of town after it prohibited managers from calling employees during working hours. In fact, prior to the outbreak, over half of employees were able to send and receive emails after hours of work. With remote work managing our inboxes has become an ongoing job as people simply send messages and emails throughout the times.
Many may suggest that the issue can be resolved by shutting off notifications and email alerts. However, it’s not as easy as that. Many employees, particularly newbies will feel the pressure of their minds to check their email and remain connected.
One way to protect employees’ rights to disconnect is to set up email and messages to be delivered within working hours. For us at UXPressia for instance, we utilize Slack to track our employees’ hours of operation to determine if it’s appropriate to contact them. If it is not, Slack makes it easy to plan your message to be sent out at the time and date you want it to be.
#2. Make use of a calendar shared with others
If a team is spread between different time zones, and even multiple countries, keeping track of everyone’s schedule for vacation isn’t easy. Along with employees’ personal days every country has distinct national holidays, laws and practices.
A shared calendar such as Google Calendar, Calendly, or any other calendar not only gives an the instant view of all gatherings but also assists in keeping an eye on the days free of employees. This makes it easy employees to determine who’s available and who’s on vacation. It’s important to set up a chat channel or channel that is synched to the shared calendar, so that you can post notifications on your coworkers’ off days and vacations on a regular basis.
#3. Implement well-being programs
The efforts to improve the balance between work and life for teams with different locations can go beyond sharing calendars and flexible hours. A successful company wellness plan is an important source that can assist employees to improve their physical and emotional wellbeing while also encouraging imagination and creativity.
There are many methods to incorporate wellness programs into a workplace. For instance, some companies provide health platforms such as Headspace Others work with health insurance providers to provide regular health screenings. Wellness initiatives can comprise:
- Social gatherings (seminars or workshops Team building events);
- Resources (nutrition programs and online assessments);
- Challenges for teams or groups;
- Classes in fitness, much more.
#4. Make sure you check in with your employees
Each business is unique and your employee’s needs could differ from those expected in a different organization. This is especially true for teams that are distributed across multiple countries where the term “work-life balance” can take on different meanings depending on the view of culture.
When you check in regularly on your employees, you can see what they really need from your employees. This information can help you ensure that you’re heading towards the right direction. Or it could reveal the issues, such as a lack of social interaction or a blurring of lines between personal and work time, and you’ll be able to do the right thing to fix them.
#5. Test new and innovative ideas
New challenges require innovative solutions. To help workers who are scattered to find the balance they need in their lives, business leaders are experimenting with new strategies.
Capital One, for instance, has introduced “Invest in Yourself Day”. Associates have one Friday each month to concentrate on their own goals, whether that’s developing a new skill in their profession or focusing on mental wellness.
WilsonHCG has introduced the unlimited pay-to-play (PTO) programme. In the program, employees will not be provided with a specific amount of days off per year. Instead, they are able to take as many or as less hours off when they require to relax, recharge and take care of their personal obligations. Based on the feedbackfrom the employees, PTO can be a win-win situation for everyone.
The final line
It’s a given that excessive work isn’t a good thing for anyone. However an investigation of employees who make up more than 3 million has found that their average work day increased by 48.5 minutes..
Finding a balance between work and life especially with a distributed workforce, isn’t easy because without in-person signals it can be difficult to keep a close eye on the employees’ mental and physical well-being. However, a team that is distributed is still a group, and many of the practices that could work in a workplace (like regular meetings or wellness programs) are attainable with some changes as well. To create an effective remote culture organisations must take a leap forward and come up with creative and novel strategies to deal with the work/life problem of balance.