How to effectively manage your US remote workforce

Managing a remote workforce can be, at times, tricky – we have put together some tips to help you build lasting relationships with your employees.
side view of smiling woman freelancer working at home

Regardless of whether you employ one person or hundreds, managing US remote employees from a different country may present some challenges. As your trusted advisor, Foothold America wants to share key business practices to help you effectively manage your US remote employees.

It is possible you will never meet your US employee(s) in person. That means the importance of connection, relationship building, and management is more important than ever.

The time to consider how to manage your remote US employees is during the interview stage. It’s crucial to ask questions of your potential hire that will indicate their ability to successfully work independently in a remote environment. Some questions to consider are:

  • Have they previously worked remotely?
  • How do they manage distractions?
  • How will they ensure they are building an effective relationship with others?
  • What is their preferred communication style?

 

Once it is determined that the candidate is a good remote hire, it is time to effectively manage your remote employee. Here are some tips:

Start them off on the right foot

  • Send a gift box to the new employee.
  • Announce the new employee to the entire company and on social media.
  • Introduce the employee to all co-workers they will be interacting with.
  • Assign an onboarding buddy or mentor.
  • Ensure they have the proper equipment and adequate home set-up.
  • Prepare a new hire presentation about the company’s history, mission, and culture.

Clear expectations

  • With clear goals, direction and expectancy, employees can understand their contribution to the business and perform better.
  • Align on priorities and focus on goals.
  • Conduct a personality assessment to determine communication and work style preferences: Belbin, The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, DiSC
  • Create a professional development plan for growth.

Regular and ongoing discussions

  • It is imperative to stay connected and communicate with your employees as frequently as possible. Based on your and the employee’s schedule, you can determine if it’s worth scheduling weekly meetings for basic catch-ups or to measure the employee’s progress.
  • Proper communication can eliminate the lack of enthusiasm and feelings of isolation. Ongoing communication can help to develop and nurture strong relationships as well as increase motivation and productivity.
  • Use video conferencing as much as possible. During online meetings, employees and managers can see each other’s emotions through facial expressions and body language.

Employee Engagement

  • Communicate deliberately and on a regular basis.
  • Build trust and rapport – small talk can go a long way!
  • Engage regularly across multiple channels.
  • Have set catch up meetings.
  • Use web-based collaboration tools.
  • Do not be afraid to use GIFs and Emojis.
  • Ask for feedback.
  • Prioritize the employee’s wellbeing and work-life balance.
  • Give recognition and award achievements.
  • Offer professional development opportunities.

Combat Isolation

  • Bring employees in town or visit employees for social events and celebrations.
  • Create virtual events such as virtual happy hours or virtual team building activities.
  • Mail company swag, newsletters, or gifts.

 

As a trusted employment partner, we understand the common challenges that may be presented when managing remote employees. Managing remote workers require discipline from both you and your team. It means finding opportunities to stay connected and engaged to maintain the strength of your team. Implementing these tips is an investment in not only your team but in your company.

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