What could be a great example to describe turbulence other than the pandemic caused by Covid-19 and the immediate need to social distancing? Aside from being good news for introverts, social distancing is a public health tactic that helps communities slow down the transmission and spread of contagious illnesses like the coronavirus. Research has shown that in urban areas and regions where a disease is spreading, taking measures like working from home, shutting down schools, and canceling large events can significantly reduce the rate of new infections. Social distancing measures can make a serious impact when they’re implemented early, so that, over time, all patients get the resources they need and lower the risk of spread, forcing organizations to adopt remote working. But, what does that mean for leaders and managers? Obviously, a critical foundation is having the right technology to enable your team to collaborate from anywhere but without a mindful approach and concerted effort across the company, remote working can be incredibly challenging and result in lost productivity and engagement.
Ttm shares some tips for managers to help them master virtual management techniques:
1. Acknowledge that Health comes first!
Managers need to share that this a global crisis affecting all a great proportion of the population, acknowledge that health and safety of our global employees, clients and partners is your first priority, keeping in mind that all teams fail without cohesion and trust, Managers should Communicate situation updates to reduce stress and sustain efficiency
2. Maintain Informal communication!
Employees are diverse in the way they work, while some people are more productive when they work remotely, many people thrive on the energy of teams and find virtual communication ineffective, evidence suggests that in general, remote workers suffer with increased anxiety (let alone in times of stress). Without regular informal communication, teamwork could suffer and relationships may strain, managers need to Sustain employee discipline, engagement and performance in a remote work setting.
3. Go back to basics
Stretching into others’ preferences, and asking your teams to as well, can make all the difference in preventing a lot of frustrating interactions when working remotely , Adapt Your Leadership Style to suit cognitive diversity, decoded by the Herrmann Whole Brain® Model as below:
- Defining sources of truth to create a shared reality particularly appeals to analytical and fact-based thinkers
- Building a routine around timeboxed activities is geared towards those with an inclination for structural and organized thought ensures that you aren’t depleting your brain’s capacity for productive work
- Over-communicating to make sure everyone on the team is in the know relates to the more interpersonal, empathetic thinkers among us, The potential for misunderstanding is amplified in a remote environment, especially when you communicate via written language and can’t hear vocal inflections, experience body language, or see facial expressions.. To help with this, amplify the use “camera on” approach to all meetings, but there is still a lot of information loss when communicating in a remote environment.
- Being sure to provide context makes sure you’re considering the needs of holistic, integrative thinkers , When you’re working remotely, it can be easy to lose track of context, especially when your brain is worn out from the productivity costs of task-switching.
4. Agility is the key to ambiguity
The new vera of virtual working came furiously due to pandemic with a lot of changes and ambiguity. It is important for managers to set priorities, prioritize tasks, come up with contingencies and encourage employees to Win: “What’s important now?” That’s a useful acronym, but it’s a more useful idea and practice to remain focused and Agile, the first and most important step towards building it – and possibly the only needed step – is building Agile Individuals who demonstrate necessary behaviours and obtain essential skills to deliver results in an agile way!
5. Social Distancing does not mean Emotional Distancing
It is of crucial importance to keep lines of communication open with your team, be accessible, check on their health status with genuine calls, create social webinars to replace coffee breaks, and always start your meetings by checking in with everyone first rather than diving into business, managers also need to maintain learning continuity through remote coaching and training.