The outbreak of the novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) has vastly impacted businesses and how they can function all around the world. Many employers have since taken the decision to encourage their employees to work from home during this difficult period. In Singapore, particularly, telecommuting has been increasingly adopted as the new norm for numerous companies.
Both bosses and employees might be feeling slightly overwhelmed by the changes that this switch of working routine brings. Employers may be worried about productivity while employees may be finding ways to maintain their focus as they work from the comforts of their own homes.
It leaves no doubt behind then that the importance of leadership through telecommuting is essential in driving an organisation through such a time. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why leadership skills play such an important role during a crisis period like the one we’re all in now.
Leadership For A Productive Telecommuting ‘Workplace’
Individuals with leadership skills tend to be exceptionally skilled and equipped to handle tight timelines and difficult projects. They usually know how to run processes and keep things in check, especially in the middle of a crisis. However, as it goes for any unforeseen circumstances, challenges may present themselves in new forms.
So, how can leaders seamlessly take charge in today’s telecommuting conditions? Ensure that you stay connected with your colleagues. Sharing the same platforms like Zoom, Whatsapp or other alternatives to conduct meetings is one such example. According to an article published on uschamber.com, this will allow everyone from the office to stay on the same page no matter where they are working from.
Conducting check-ins with your employees every now and then will also be helpful to ensure that colleagues are able to check things off their task list. Offer assistance to them if you can. The new telecommuting arrangements might have already introduced new challenges for individuals, so try to give them (and yourself) some leeway where possible. This act of checking-in will both help to foster connections with colleagues and allow employees to set priorities so that they can better handle their time.
Starting with these two simple steps and maintaining them throughout the work period can assist leaders to make sure that work is getting done and that the company is moving ahead in a productive manner, despite the crisis at hand.
Leadership Through Telecommuting To Keep Employees Positive
People with excellent leadership qualities understand the importance of keeping everyone at work happy for positive business results. Forbes.com shared a study where happy employees were found to be up to 20% more productive than unhappy employees. When it came to salespeople, happiness had an even greater impact, raising sales by 37%. As such, good leaders should not only adopt strategies to maximise productivity at a workplace, but they should also know how to keep their staff positive, in spite of the difficulties posed by the pandemic.
Those with leadership abilities understand the importance of people-skills and the power of social influence. An article by Forbes advises leaders to “acknowledge that employees with caregiving responsibilities are likely to face challenges when working from home and express a general understanding that normal hours and business priorities may need to shift”. Therefore, it is important for leaders to accommodate changes in the workload and empathise with their colleagues as meeting your employees’ needs will allow you to maintain healthy relations with them.
Be open-minded and honest while assuming positive intent in your conversations with colleagues. Understand that everyone is under new stresses and be ready to make adjustments since the pandemic affects people differently. Trying to spread positivity within the workspace carries numerous benefits for both employers and employees. As a leader, incorporating this strategy into your office can help your colleagues to push through the challenges brought on by remote working conditions a little better.
Good Leadership Through Telecommuting Will Improve Organisational Success
Every organisation that has an exemplary leader who knows how to tackle possible problems in stride, are most likely to be found at the top of the success ladders.
Having leadership skills allow employers the opportunity to drive the company’s visions and missions ahead. Colleagues will be aware of the goals they are working towards and this will result in KPIs to be easily achieved, even though the working styles of an organisation has been changed.
When someone who always has the big picture and end goals in the back of their minds step up to lead the company in the middle of a crisis, things are most likely to work out positively, even when they have to face the troubles posed by remote working conditions. Research from University of California Irvine by professor Judith Olson have found that the most successful remote work situations are those in which workers have similar work styles, know and like each other, have technology that allows them to collaborate, and know how to use that technology. All these factors, if managed well by a strong leader could result in organisational success to be achieved easily.
What You Learn About Leading A Remote Workforce Now Will Likely Become The Best Practice For Your Company Later On
In summary, leadership skills are especially important qualities to attain in today’s world where individuals from around the globe are adapting to telecommuting and remote working conditions. Use your leadership value to keep your colleagues happy, maintain a productive workplace and achieve organisational success with the work-from-home system. As supported by an article from Gallup, what you learn about leading a remote workforce now will likely become the best practice for your company later on.
StrengthsAsia has helped many individual and corporate clients all throughout the region in empowering leaders by enabling breakthrough experiences for both leaders and followers. If you want to learn more about the Strengths Leadership Program, feel free to reach out to us here.