Ep 248: How to Help Remote Teams Be Productive

Right now, we’re all looking for ideas to help our teams who are suddenly dispersed and working from home due to the coronavirus. How do we train employees who have never worked remotely? How do we ensure they have the resources they need to do their jobs from home? And how can we help them be productive? If this is the new future of work, how do we, as HR leaders, support a remote workforce?

 

Ep 248: How to Help Remote Teams Be Productive with Charlotte Lockhart (@lockhart_charli)

 

Right now, we’re all looking for ideas to help our teams who are suddenly dispersed and working from home due to the coronavirus. How do we train employees who have never worked remotely? How do we ensure they have the resources they need to do their jobs from home? And how can we help them be productive? If this is the new future of work, how do we, as HR leaders, support a remote workforce? In this episode of the Workology Podcast, I talk with Charlotte Lockhart, business advocate, investor and philanthropist with more than 25 years’ experience in multiple industries. As CEO for the 4 Day Week Global campaign she works promoting internationally the benefits of a productivity-focused and reduced-hour workplace. 

With such a large share of the U.S. workforce converting to remote work due to COVID-19, HR and company leaders have to be skilled at engaging an off-site employee base. This means we have to build “people-first” policies that enable our remote workers to be productive, engaged, and educated on best practices for working from home – especially for employees who may be working remotely for the first time in their careers. 

Charlotte’s company went remote after some trial periods in 2018, during which they worked to answer the question, “what does productivity look like?” Based on her experience, she recommends that companies make looking at a remote solution a “bottom up process” so that “everyone’s involved with finding what productivity is and what the solutions are around increasing it look like.” 

“When you treat the business as a whole, everybody in that business has a job that allows everyone else to do their job.” @lockhart_charli #podcast #remotework Click To Tweet

 

How Can Company Leadership Best Support Their Remote Workforce?

 

In looking at all the new things we can do with a remote workforce – reduced overhead, flexibility for employees – that are positives for companies, trust is really at the heart of these decisions from a leadership perspective. Once you have established that people can work from home, there are environmental and infrastructure benefits, there is more of a work life balance, a gender balance in the workforce. Reframing and reimagining this allows us to define what productivity looks like in the workplace.

I asked Charlotte how HR leaders can best support company leadership in communicating with and supporting a remote workforce. She said that we should remember “why we gave them the employment contract in the first place. So if you’re not going to trust your decision to hire a person or a team of people into roles, then actually what are we saying about our own ability to make decisions?” As HR leaders, we must be able to support hiring managers in having confidence in their own decisions and in our decisions when we screen employees. 

 

Conclusion

 

We are making a significant shift in how we work with a newly remote workforce, and it’s challenging to make this experience as seamless as possible, as well as help our dispersed workforce be productive. Remote work has become a vital part of a company’s operations and I’m glad to have had the opportunity to get advice from Charlotte Lockhart as an expert on workplace productivity.

Connect with Charlotte Lockhart.

 

RECOMMENDED RESOURCES 

 

Charlotte Lockhart on Twitter

4 Day Week Website

Udemy: Online course enrollment surged 425% amid lockdowns

The 4 Day Week Book

Podcast Transcript

 

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell (@jmillermerrell) is a workplace change agent, author and consultant focused on human resources and talent acquisition living in Austin, TX. Recognized by Forbes as a top 50 social media influencer and is a global speaker. She’s the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource and host of the Workology Podcast.

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