Showing your employees that you appreciate them is much easier in a regular office. All you need to do is walk to their desk, say a few words of praise, and pat them on the back. But when your workforce is remote, demonstrating that you care can be a bit more complicated.
1. Offer Recognition
Every employee wants to feel their hard work is appreciated and valued. Praise can be even more meaningful in a remote work environment since remote employees might not be getting feedback all of the time.
For instance, you can show your appreciation to introverted employees by spotlighting their efforts in the company newsletter. For the ones that enjoy public praising, on the other hand, consider mentioning their achievements at the beginning of a team meeting.
If you want to take things a step further (and if your budget allows it), you can award employees who put extra effort with gift cards or bonuses.
2. Communicate Frequently and Openly
Checking in with your remote team members on a regular basis is the best way to show them your appreciation and support. Use online chats, communication apps, and video conferencing tools to share achievements and any issues your team may be facing.
You can also call individual employees who have made great achievements and congratulate them. In addition, encourage team members to keep in touch with each other and collaborate to achieve the organization’s goals.
3. Send Them Care Packages
Social distancing doesn’t mean your staff members have to feel isolated while working from home. Designed to boost social connection and employee engagement, care packages show you care while at the same time providing essentials and goodies people need to feel better.
As the SnackNation team puts it, work-from-home care packages are the bond-maintaining symbols of affection you can send to people you don’t get to see as often as you’d like due to physical distance or pandemic-safe social distancing practices.
According to the team, some of the best care packages include healthy office snacks, feel-good items like candles and bath bombs, and even alcohol. You can send them on employees’ birthdays, on holidays, to celebrate milestones like work anniversaries or promotions, or on any day to boost employee morale and show that working from home doesn’t have to be a drag.
4. Use the Right Technology
Remote team members can be as productive and dedicated as your on-site employees, but there’s a risk of isolation for those who work from home.
Technology can help you avoid this by enabling you to put faces to names, engage in water-cooler-style conversations, etc.
You can also use online collaboration tools like Trello, Asana, and Google Docs to help all your employees work together, even if they’re miles away. Employees can use email or the official company’s Facebook page to collaborate. Make sure all the employees have a reliable internet connection so they can work, communicate, and submit reports easily.
5. Ask for Feedback
One of the best ways to show that you care is to provide an easy way for your remote employees to give feedback and to actually act on it.
You can set up short (2-3 question) surveys at the end of the workweek where you will ask your remote staff members to let you know how they’re doing and weigh in on important topics like employee benefits, communication, etc.
In addition, try to act on the feedback you receive. This will show that you’re really listening and you are working to meet your employees’ needs.
6. Show Interest in Their Professional Development
Taking an interest in your employees’ professional development will not only show that you care but will also boost their motivation. One way to do this is by encouraging them to take online courses to improve their skills.
However, even if remote employees have access to great online development courses, they might feel that they are missing out on informal mentoring opportunities. Consider funding programs that allow remote team members to attend conferences and get in-person training.
7. Surprise Them With a Day Off
Everyone loves a surprise, especially if it comes in the form of a day off. You can offer extra days for hitting performance goals, to reward loyalty, or for no special reason, simply to boost your team’s productivity.
While it can be complicated to shut down operations across the entire company for a full day with minimal notice, you can try offering a flexible day off to be taken in the upcoming month.
It’s just one extra day, but this perk will leave your staff members feeling that the organization cares about their happiness and overall health.
When employees feel their best, they’ll perform their best. Whether your business has always operated remotely or you’ve had to make adjustments to the new way of working due to the pandemic, showing your remote employees that you care is important to keep morale high and boost efficiency. It will help you retain the highly skilled employees you already have and attract new top talent to your company.