Flexible working arrangement has become the new normal, with 41 percent of global businesses surveyed said they already offer some degree of remote working and 60 percent provide flexible opportunities that allow employees to choose when to start and end their workday. Workers who currently telecommute also admitted that they plan to work remotely for the rest of their career. Given these findings, it comes as no surprise that the idea of remote working is seen as ideal for the future workforce.
However, while remote work sounds like a promising workstyle, working remotely remains associated with a bad reputation. According to a CDC report, 35 percent of working adults, regardless of where they work, are not getting the recommended hours of sleep every night. Respondents also said that they do not have quality sleep, such as repeatedly waking up throughout the night, feeling less than rested when waking up or getting sleep apnea. Remote work culture also often leads to an always-on culture that blurs the boundaries between professional and private life, especially when remote team members live in very diverse time zones.
Remote work is vital to tomorrow’s workforce, but it could also pose a negative working culture. That being said, business leaders together with HR should be able to bridge this gap. Here are proven ways to improve remote work culture and achieve its true advantages.
A good example of a well-managed remote culture is demonstrated by UNICEF. In an interview with Trello, the GIC team reported that they successfully maintain 16 full- and part-time colleagues across 11 locations, enabling a 24-hour cycle of time some support and asynchronous collaboration by unearthing the need for a suite of tools to collaborate, organise, and share a single perspective on their efforts regardless of longitude or latitude.
Here is a roundup of the most important types of tools businesses should consider for their remote work:
In a remote work situation, employees can easily feel isolated and lonely. Remote employees are also more prone to feeling left out or shunned by others, partly because they are worried about decisions and changes are being made without their input.
To make sure this does not happen to your team, business leaders and managers in each department should keep updated and transparent communication about what’s going on. Make sure to spare time at least once or twice a week to get in touch with the whole team, be it through video conferencing or text messaging. Emojis are also helpful to convey messaging to be livelier.
Rules in remote culture mean social norms that provide participants with expected experience when they enter the proverbial office. The special things about norms are that they are collectively agreed upon by all the stakeholders in the team. With 100 percent buy-in, these rules could also build trust, understanding, and support.
While an on-site working environment might give more opportunities for all employees to meet and share with each other, remote working culture should not prohibit the same culture. Encourage remote team with a “choose-your-own” company adventure that allows team-bonding. Or, bring everyone together for a company holiday in an unexpected place, such as camping for the whole department or going on one-day nightlife in a Safari park.