“Remote work is the future of work.” – Alexis Ohanian
Working remotely is all fun and pajamas until the loneliness of being apart from everyone else sets in. That’s why it’s important to check in on remote employees occasionally to make sure they’re coping well, adjusting to the work-from-home culture, and getting all the support they need.
The best way to do these check-ins is by asking questions that’ll give you insight into their well-being, challenges they may be facing, and the things that are working out well. Here are 5 key questions you can ask remote employees to get this kind of insight:
“How are you adapting to working remotely?”
Although remote working is becoming more common, it's not uncommon for people to struggle with adapting to the new work model. This question allows remote employees to share any challenges they might be having with the switch.
Based on their answers, you can offer your support in whatever way is necessary, such as providing resources or tools that make working remotely easier. Your employees can also share positive things they've experienced while adapting to the switch so you can find ways to maximize these.
"Do you have any experience working remotely?"
The answer to this question will highlight the level of support the employees will need to successfully work remotely. You can offer your support in the form of guidance, advice, or training.
Make sure to check in regularly and also ask your employees if there's a particular skill they'd like to learn or level up. You can incorporate those into the training programs you set up so they're better equipped for remote work.
"What's your work setup like?"
Most productivity hacks for working from home suggest having a designated space. This offers many benefits, from increased productivity to a better separation of work from the rest of life.
Take note of your employees’ answers to this question, as well as how it impacts the quality and quantity of their work. You can offer employees tips to improve their workspace and also provide or suggest equipment or software they can use for increased productivity.
"Are you clear on your role and what you should be working on?"
Miscommunication is one of the biggest risks associated with remote working, so this question is necessary to provide clarity. When you have a remote team, each member needs to do their part to ensure the overall success of whatever project they're working on and your business.
Besides asking them to let you know where they need clarity, you can also help by providing clear, detailed outlines of the task they're expected to perform or carry out.
"What's your daily routine?"
Success in anything starts by building good habits and those rely on one's daily routine. While routines vary from person to person, there are certain common elements in each one that guarantees success, especially when it comes to working remotely.
You can ask employees to share their daily routine with you so you can work together to fine-tune it in a way that guarantees they'll put their best foot forward. Answers to this question will also give you insight into their energy and time management so you can help them work out a routine for a good work/life balance that won't leave them burned out.
“Trust in your employees is essential for remote work success. It also forms the underlying foundation of a great virtual culture.” – Larry English