The Google Way …!

Google made headlines again earlier this month for confirming that the company would extend its work from home policy until at least July 2021. He surveyed over 5,000 Google employees and held focus groups with over 100 more to better establish exactly what employees wanted and how this would impact their work structures.

On focusing on four areas; wellbeing, performance, connectedness and productivity and on analysis of the data, Google not only could prepare for how it handled the pandemic, but also how it plans to adapt to the remote future of work. These were:

Make team meetings a priority – Team meetings are often some of the only interactions you’ll have with your team when working apart so schedule them, prioritise them even if it there isn’t anything urgent, and be socially present.

Show personal interest – Google’s data found that the key positives for employees from meetings within the company were the chance to talk to peers and senior leaders about themselves. It recommends pushing this by starting all meetings with a short period of chitchat.

Be present – Some engagement signals are lost when we work together virtually, particularly when we mute the microphone or focus intently on our laptops. So, try to keep engagement high by giving everyone the opportunity to speak, and encouraging everyone to look at each other.

Check in – Whilst the difference between being a consistent presence in your employees’ remote working schedule and preventing them from actually completing their work is ultimately down to personal preference, Google recommends checking in with a short hello via an encouraging message, a project-relevant news article, or even a funny photo.

Recognise your teammates – When working remotely, it isn’t as easy to say a quick ‘thanks’ or ‘good job’ to a teammate. Be sure to send a message to a colleague congratulating or thanking them, share kudos in team meetings, and utilise your company’s recognition program.

Choose to implement a similar approach while managing your workforce remotely could make better morale and productivity. Particularly if your business is still unsure on how long you will require to work remotely.

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