Pros in Different Area Codes: 4 Tips for Remote Employee Engagement

Screen shot 2012-10-03 at 1.56.51 PMThe Starr Conspiracy has several agents who rock the HR marketing world remotely. We aren’t a virtual firm, 90% of our employees work in The Starr Conspiracy HQ in Fort Worth, Texas. But every once in a while, you meet that rockstar agent who lives across the country.

We have a laid-back culture that relies on trust and empowerment of all agents here at TSC. We hire people we know are capable. Whether or not they’re in the office, no one is being micro-managed or overly supervised. But there are unique challenges that affect both employer and employee in a virtual work environment.

We didn’t write the book on remote employee training or engagement. But we have some tricks up our sleeve we use to keep our virtual employees in front of the team.

4 Tips for Remote Employee Engagement:

  1. Include as much visual communication in your daily routine as possible: At The Starr Conspiracy, we video conference our daily huddle with onsite and remote employees to catch up on the agency’s news and workflow.
  2. Don’t ignore the need for face time: Whether employees are flown in once per month or joining the team at industry-relevant events, remote employees need the opportunity to engage with their teammates face to face.
  3. Be sensitive to the fact that they might be flying blind: Understand that in-person conversations that happen at the office might leave onsite employees with a greater understanding of a project’s requirements or client sensitivity, but communicating effectively with virtual employees requires more purposeful communication. Remote employees don’t have a crystal ball into the daily workings of the company … so they can’t know anything you don’t make a point to tell them.
  4. Be sure the door is open both ways: Encourage employees to communicate with leadership and coworkers through email, video chat, IM or other internal communication methods.

Interested in learning more information about training remote employees and integrating virtual team members into your company’s daily life? Check out this infographic from Mindflash.com.