Working Remotely? 4 Smart Ways to Stay Connected
Here we are two months into the pandemic. If you’re working remotely, it’s time to ask, “How well are we staying connected as a team?” Your answer is:
By being transparent with each other, remote workers can actually help build a healthier, stronger workplace. This proved to be the case recently when remote employees from like-minded ministry organizations brainstormed ways for how to stay better connected during the pandemic. Their ideas make up four, logical steps for creating greater employee engagement:
1. Size Up
Evaluate the current well-being of your people.
- Send a staff-wellness check-in questionnaire. (mental, emotional, spiritual, physical)
- Offer a biblical perspective on crisis and chaos. It can be an article or a kindle book, such as The Red Sea Rules: 10 God-Given Strategies for Difficult Times.
- Create a winsome one-pager to help clarify potentially confusing issues, policies or procedures. Examples: List the difference between reduction in hours, furlough and layoff. Post updates on wider community, state and federal news, tips on how to apply for unemployment.
2. Check Up
Migrate to proven, available tech tools to better stay in touch.
- Agree to connect electronically at a consistent time (ex., the first and third Tuesday at 4pm). Leverage both call-in and video chat options.
- Host a weekly manager, 10-15 minute check-in to confirm who’s doing what by when—and how people and departments can help one another.
- Start a home care package drop off for furloughed staff. (Comes with smart social distancing, and a recipient’s deep appreciation for each provider who experiences the gift of giving)
3. Speak Up
Communicate what you need to say (and say it again).
- Continue to overcommunicate. (Healthy Communication is part of the FLOURISH Model present in the best Christian places to work). Leadership should be sharing facts and feelings every week. Transparency matters at all levels, from financial and personnel news to how leaders are responding to COVID-19.
- Value Facebook, or Zoom staff meetings for news, celebrations, affirmations, and prayer requests.
- Start a shared Facebook page just for staff. Pick a moderator to rodeo new stories of community impact, productive teams, prayer requests, birthdays, and other milestones.
4. Free Up
Invigorate your mind, body, and soul, together!
- Make time for an online trivia or game night
- Share a family photo of a special or silly moment. Double bonus points for including a sing-along.
- Create a “Get Moving Challenge” and have your fitness team post an encouragement and/or five-minute workout.
Connecting with colleagues goes far beyond your four walls. As journalist Matthew Brooker writes, “There is no substitute for face-to-face contact, though how much is necessary is an elastic question.”
Remote employees are already working out the answer.
Siobhan McHale, author of The Insider’s Guide to Culture Change, says “You can’t predict the future but you can create a more agile, responsive and inventive way of navigating in uncertain times. The companies that survive and thrive through this period of uncertainty will be those with resilient and adaptive cultures.”
Download BCWI’s four-page guide for inspirational leadership in crisis for FREE.