The ability to manage a team remotely has become critical. Because of the new coronavirus pandemic and measures of social isolation, many companies have adopted the remote model and remote leadership has gained force.
Today, many challenging scenarios are no longer new. However, it is still a fact that many leaders are in an unprepared position to exercise remote leadership effectively.
Many companies face a major challenge as they are forced to adopt the teleworking model. Not only from the teams, which need to adapt to the home office while maintaining engagement and productivity but also from the leaders who need to understand how to manage remotely.
In this article, you will find out how leaders have dealt with working remotely and managing and monitoring teams all the way long.
What is remote leadership?
Remote leadership is a people management model adapted to the more flexible working hours observed in the home office. That is a kind of a format that increased since Covid-19.
In other words, it is an essential update for companies that want to keep up with the reality of the moment.
The idea is for managers to continue performing the same functions and fulfilling their usual responsibilities, but applied to a different context.
The Main Challenges to lead a team virtually
As the pandemic progressed, many companies switched to teleworking. This sudden change meant leading and managing in new ways.
For most professionals, it is very easy to run into obstacles when working virtually, whether with assessments, priorities, or expectations. Thus, preventing this from happening in the central challenge of remote leadership.
In a scenario where most employees of a company are working away, the role of the leader becomes even more important. He/she needs to have adaptability and flexibility, and share these attributes with the team.
Therefore, the leader must always keep in mind that he/she needs to strengthen the trust between the team and create a helpful environment for the work.
Thus, motivation and feedback are two fundamental elements of remote leadership.
What are the pillars of remote leadership?
If you want to be a good remote leader, there are some qualities you must follow. These pillars are important to remote leaders to keep their teams on track.
Communication is so important in the remote work context that it deserves even more attention.
In other words, it is necessary to know the team very well to find the best way to communicate with each member.
Instead of relying on common sense and asking for agility, share the calendar. In addition, instead of just commenting on the expected result, bring it in detail. Therefore, explain what each person needs to do and how they interact with other team members.
One way to do this is by holding quick meetings every day. The idea is to ask everyone what was done the day before and what will be done today.
Thus, the goal is to be informal and confirm the plan quickly. It will explain doubts and resolve any problems that have arisen.
Trust is another fundamental pillar of remote leadership success. This relationship is part of a construction and needs to be practiced daily.
Many people wonder how it is possible to inspect a job without being able to follow it closely. The answer lies precisely in giving credit to your team’s employees and relying on their professionalism.
There are ways to put that trust to the test.
Finding the balance between autonomy and discipline is one of the great challenges of remote leadership, but it is possible to find that middle ground.
In a way, this pillar was mentioned in the first topic when we talk about communication and it is natural, as they are closely linked.
That’s not a positive attitude. Employees, to achieve good performance, need a certain level of independence.
The duties and obligations of employees in a company do not change. In addition, it happens because they are working from home or the office.
Remote work can give a feeling of greater flexibility, which is completely normal. But this style cannot give reason to procrastination.
The idea is to say that both parties need to take responsibility for their actions so that the results appear.
Leaders must practice active listening and be empathetic to listen to the issues raised by employees and seek to quickly and assertively resolve these demands.
It is an exercise in putting yourself in the other’s shoes and trying to be a calming voice.
10 Ways to Leaders Manage Remotely
1. Schedule daily check-ins
Adopt a routine check-in with the team. Whether by videoconference, WhatsApp, or any other communication system your company uses, establish contact with people.
2. Take advantage of technology
As most teams have been forced to follow a path of digital transformation, try to adopt tools that provide simple communication platforms.
3. Focus on results
Clearly defining goals and desired outcomes and allowing employees to develop an execution plan enhances creativity and autonomy.
4. Define the goal of these results
The team needs to understand the overall purpose and their role in achieving success. Thus, this is the foundation of high performance for remote teams.
5. Show flexibility
Each team member has a different home environment. In addition, the leader needs to understand the conditions of each employee and to be flexible to different contexts.
6. Guide more than manage
The best leaders are those who guide and train more than they manage. They also understand the differences between the leadership and management disciplines.
7. Use the best tools for communication
In remote work, you depend on technology for the entire relationship and communication with your employees.
That’s why you should take responsibility for choosing the best possible tools for this communication…
8. Explore the tools well
It is important to keep up-to-date with remote work and remote communication tools.
Follow the news to ensure that your team is using the best for this way of working.
9. Seek to evaluate yourself
It’s not just employees who need feedback and evaluations. You as a leader must be evaluated to understand how your work is doing.
Seek feedback from trusted people and outside consultants who can provide ongoing analysis.
10. Assess your beliefs
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Avoid negative and self-sabotaging thoughts, like thinking you’re an idiot and no one likes you.
Instead, try to improve with more positive thoughts, after all, if you believe you won’t make it, you probably won’t.
Does Remote Leadership work anytime, anywhere?
Leaders will never fail to play an essential role within organizations, even in the context of remote work.
Leading remotely brings a host of new challenges and the fact is that many leaders don’t feel ready for this.
Remote leadership is a fundamental practice to maintain the balance and quality of the work of the company’s professionals.
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