The recent pandemic has forced many companies to change the way they operate. However, training and learning of existing as well as new hires cannot come to a stop altogether. The challenge remains in providing a channel for learning when the majority of employees are working remotely.
Utilizing digital learning strategies can help companies provide their employees with opportunities to grow and develop their skills. This will expand the canvas of their professional growth. Incessant learning will prepare everyone for the long-term growth of the company. With this thought, companies have switched to various strategies to engage remote employees with new technologies and processes while working remotely.
Understanding Engagement For Remote Teams
Employee engagement, at its core, reflects the intensity of an employee’s connection to their work, team, and the organization. When applied to remote workers, it takes on a nuanced meaning, focusing on sustaining a strong sense of belonging and shared purpose despite physical distance.
While the rise of remote work offers undeniable flexibility, it can also present challenges in nurturing this vital feeling of engagement, potentially impacting individual and organizational performance.
Measuring engagement, be it in a traditional or remote setting, is never a one-size-fits-all endeavor. But in the virtual landscape, regular, two-way communication emerges as a powerful tool to engage remote employees.
We can gain valuable insights into their engagement levels by proactively checking in with remote employees about their work, aspirations, and any roadblocks they encounter.
Addressing their concerns thoughtfully and supporting their career goals will ultimately bridge the physical gap, cultivate trust and commitment, and unlock the full potential of our remote workforce.
Why Engage Remote Employees? The Ripple Effect
Ever wondered why engaging remote employees matters? It’s like dropping a pebble – see the ripple effect of productivity and satisfaction. Read on to know why!
1. Healthy Bodies, Happy Minds
A Gallup study found that engaged employees have lower obesity rates, fewer chronic diseases, and naturally embrace healthier lifestyles. The key is workplaces that invest in employee well-being, offering flexible schedules for breaks, company fitness programs, and accessible healthcare options.
And the connection to remote work? It’s the same idea. Engaged remote employees thrive when their well-being is a priority, with flexible schedules for breaks, virtual fitness programs, and easy access to healthcare. It’s a win-win: whether in an office or working remotely, healthier employees are happier, more productive, and less likely to miss work due to illness.
Coming up, we’re also going to see how the same can be done for remote employees as well.
2. Retention Upperhand
Disengaged employees are like wilting flowers – devoid of sunlight and nourishment, they eventually fade away. This translates to high turnover rates in today’s dynamic job market, especially among Millennials.
Studies show that 60% of Millennials are open to new opportunities, and a staggering 21% hop jobs annually – three times the rate of non-Millennials! But there’s good news: engaged Millennials, those who find their strengths utilized and their voices heard, stick around longer than any other generation.
They become brand ambassadors, spreading satisfaction and advocating for your company with a powerful 59x referral rate. So, nurturing engagement isn’t just about keeping your team happy, it’s about building a loyal force of brand advocates who amplify your reach and attract top talent.
3. Present and Productive
A virtual workspace filled with enthusiasm, not the chaotic sort, but a calm sense of purpose. That’s the vibe in highly engaged remote work environments, where absenteeism sees a significant drop of 41%. Why? Because engaged remote workers discover purpose in their tasks, grasp the company’s mission, and eagerly make daily contributions.
This doesn’t imply they never take breaks – burnout remains a real concern. However, for engaged remote workers, occasional absences are often driven by genuine needs, not a lack of connection to their work.
4. Productivity Ignition
Employee Engagement isn’t just about happy faces; it’s the fuel that powers productivity and innovation. Studies show a 17% productivity boost in highly engaged teams. And who are the tech-savvy maestros pushing the boundaries of innovation? Millennials! They are the largest generation in the workforce.
Engaging this generation (and all others) is no longer optional; it’s the key to unlocking maximum workplace potential. Engaged employees don’t just follow instructions; they ask questions, offer solutions, and bring fresh perspectives to the table. They become the engine driving your company forward, fueled by a sense of purpose and a desire to contribute.
5. Revenue Soar with Smiles
Happy employees translate to satisfied customers, and satisfied customers translate to one thing: higher revenue. Organizations that engage remote employees are sure to witness revenue boosts compared to their disengaged counterparts.
Investing in employee engagement isn’t just about fluffy perks; it’s a sound investment with a tangible return. By fostering a connection, appreciation, and a sense of belonging, you’re not just building a happy team, you’re building a thriving business.
6. Innovation Playground
Engaged employees aren’t just cogs in the machine; they’re like kids in a giant playroom of possibilities. The energy crackles as they throw around ideas, experiment fearlessly, and break the mold.
They see challenges as opportunities to innovate, not roadblocks. This creative spark leads to a constant flow of fresh solutions, new products, and groundbreaking services – the lifeblood of companies that stay ahead of the curve.
Remember, Steve Jobs didn’t build Apple with drones; he built it with passionate rebels who dared to dream differently.
7. Loyalty Magnet
Employee engagement isn’t just about ping pong tables and free snacks (though those don’t hurt) or sharing memes on Slack; it’s about forging a deep connection between an employee and their company. Feeling valued, heard, and like your contribution truly matters.
When that happens, the “job” transforms into a purpose and loyalty blossoms. Engage remote employees so that they can become your advocates, fiercely defending your brand and attracting top talent like moths to a flame.
Who wouldn’t want a team of such passionate ambassadors spreading the word about your awesomeness?
So, now you understand why is it important to engage remote employees. Now, let’s get started with employee engagement ideas for remote workers.
23 Learning Strategies to Engage Remote Employees
Struggling to keep your remote employees engaged and thriving? We’ve compiled 25 proven learning strategies that helped us engage remote employees.
At Ajackus, we have tried and tested these strategies, making us a Great Place To Work, and we’re sharing our insights to help you do the same.
1. Learning Powerhouses
Ditch static training materials and ignite a passion for knowledge with a dynamic Learning Management System (LMS). Platforms like LearnVilla, as adopted by Ajackus, offer a seamless way to access diverse learning materials and personalize the experience.
By identifying individual strengths and weaknesses, the LMS paves the way for customized learning paths that blend video lessons, online courses, and interactive sessions for a truly engaging journey.
We can also help you build these LMS for your company. Contact Us for more info.
2. Webinar Wisdom Bites
Don’t underestimate the power of a quick knowledge jolt! Even a 30-minute webinar can spark self-improvement and give practical direction. For example, monthly webinars on various technical and soft skills topics empower individuals to grow professionally and personally.
Webinars transform passive observers into active participants, with tools like interactive whiteboards and live screen-sharing fostering dynamic learning experiences.
3. Bite-sized brilliance
Embrace the power of “less is more” with micro-learning. Imagine short, impactful bursts of knowledge readily accessible anytime, anywhere.
At Ajackus, we also integrate this philosophy into its daily routine, ensuring employees have immediate access to essential information and actionable insights to tackle any challenge.
As remote work gains momentum, micro-learning empowers teams with quick, decisive learning that fuels both personal and business growth.
4. Learning and Bonding to engage remote employees
Break the geographical barriers and ignite the learning flame with regular virtual meet-ups. Picture monthly or bi-weekly sessions buzzing with interactive group discussions and lively debates on captivating topics.
These video conferences are more than just learning forums; they create a positive work environment where remote teams can bond, share ideas, and motivate each other. This blend of knowledge and connection fosters the development of soft skills while strengthening the remote team spirit.
5. Presentations with Panache
Channel the accumulated learning into captivating presentations! A simple 15-minute showcase can do wonders for confidence and soft skills. Imagine polished language skills, captivating delivery, and a surge of self-belief – that’s the magic of presenting.
This act not only reinforces the newly acquired knowledge but also inspires others to embark on their own learning journeys.
6. Bridging the Digital Divide to engage remote employees
Ditch the endless email trails and embrace tools that foster seamless communication and project management. Think Zoom for face-to-face connection, Asana for collaborative task tracking, and cloud-based file sharing to keep everyone on the same page, regardless of location. Remember, a video call goes a long way compared to cold text – schedule regular meetings with screen sharing to break down the virtual walls and build a more cohesive team.
7. Celebrating Every Milestone
Remote work offers flexibility, but human connection remains vital. Cultivate a culture that celebrates victories, big and small. Public shout-outs on your virtual “Kudos Wall” or dedicated Slack channels empower everyone to recognize and appreciate each other’s achievements.
A little recognition goes a long way in boosting morale and fostering a sense of belonging.
8. Beyond the Work Agenda to engage remote employees
Let’s be honest, emails and instant messages don’t always reveal the human story. Nurture genuine connections by incorporating fun icebreakers into video meetings, like show-and-tell activities or online games. Tools for video chats can help with deeper connections – remember, fostering authentic engagement means going beyond the work agenda.
9. Rewards and Recognition
Employee R&R programs are more than just fancy titles and trinkets. Take a critical look at yours – are they aligned with your remote workforce’s needs and aspirations?
Consider offering non-monetary incentives like flexible work hours, personalized learning opportunities, or even volunteer time-off programs. Show your employees they’re valued not just for their output, but also for who they are as individuals.
10. Breaking Down Silos
Onboarding remote employees shouldn’t feel like an isolated experience. Organize virtual welcome sessions where new team members can interact with their in-house counterparts. Icebreakers, pre-determined questions, and even casual coffee chats can help break down silos and foster a sense of camaraderie right from the start.
11. The Virtual Coffee Break
Who says water cooler moments can’t happen remotely? Schedule regular virtual coffee breaks where team members can unwind, chat about anything and everything, and simply connect on a personal level. It’s a chance to share stories, offer support, and build stronger relationships – all over a steaming cup (or mug) of their favorite beverage.
12. One-on-One Time in the Spotlight
Remote workers deserve to feel heard and valued. Make regular one-on-one video calls with the founder or leadership team a priority. These short but meaningful interactions provide a platform for feedback, concerns, and open communication – ensuring everyone feels connected to the bigger picture.
13. Home Office Hustle
While providing workstations might not be feasible, consider allocating funds to help remote employees personalize their home offices. This could include ergonomic furniture, noise-canceling headphones, or even subscriptions to online productivity tools.
Remember, a comfortable and inspiring workspace can significantly boost productivity and well-being.
14. Perks with a Pulse
Remote work comes with unique needs. Supplement your benefits package with offerings that cater to those needs. Think online fitness programs, mental health app reimbursements, or even grocery delivery allowances.
Demonstrate your commitment to your employees’ holistic well-being by providing tangible resources that support their work-life balance.
15. Prioritizing Mental Wellness
A strong mind fuels a productive workforce. Organize virtual guided meditations, offer access to employee assistance programs, and promote mental health resources openly. Create a safe space for team members to share their experiences through dedicated Slack channels or private messages.
Remember, prioritizing mental well-being isn’t just beneficial, it’s essential for a thriving remote team.
16. Gifts that Go Beyond the Cliche
Skip the generic stress balls and keychains. Show your employees you truly appreciate them by offering personalized gifts that cater to their individual interests. Whether it’s a subscription to their favorite streaming service, a gift certificate to a local restaurant, or even a donation to their chosen charity, make it thoughtful and meaningful.
17. Celebrating Together (Virtually)
Dedicate a special day to recognize and celebrate your remote team. Send personalized appreciation messages, deliver sweet treats to their doorsteps, or organize a virtual talent show. Get creative, have fun, and remember – even miles apart, you can still create a memorable and meaningful shared experience.
18. Setting Goals with Purpose
Acknowledge the changes your team has faced, both personally and professionally. Establish clear, attainable goals that consider their individual needs and aspirations. Regularly check in, offer support, and celebrate progress.
Remember, a flexible and supportive approach to goal setting fosters a sense of ownership and engagement among your remote workforce.
19. Tech-Free Tuesdays to engage remote employees
Combat digital fatigue and encourage human connection with “Tech-Free Tuesdays.” Dedicate one day each week where all communication and collaboration happen offline. Encourage phone calls, handwritten notes, or even in-person coffee meetings for those in close proximity. This digital detox can spark creativity, enhance focus, and build more meaningful personal connections.
Channel the team’s collective spirit towards a greater good by organizing volunteering initiatives. Partner with local charities or online platforms to engage remote employees in remote volunteering activities, like online tutoring, digital marketing assistance, or even translation projects.
Give back to the community while fostering team bonding and a sense of shared purpose.
21. Skill Swap Workshops to engage remote employees
Break down departmental silos and ignite cross-functional learning with skill swap workshops. Encourage employees to share their expertise by hosting short online sessions on various skills, like coding basics, graphic design tips, or even effective communication strategies.
This builds inter-team collaboration, enhances skill portfolios, and fosters mutual respect for diverse skill sets.
22. Virtual Escape Rooms
Boost teamwork and problem-solving skills with online escape room challenges. Choose from a variety of themed virtual escape rooms that require collaboration, communication, and quick thinking to solve puzzles and break free. This fun and engaging activity not only strengthens bonds but also hones essential workplace skills.
23. Wellness Wednesdays
Prioritize physical and mental well-being by dedicating one day of the week or a month to wellness activities. Host virtual yoga or meditation sessions, organize online fitness challenges, or even arrange for discounts on mental health apps or subscriptions. Small steps toward holistic well-being can significantly impact remote team morale and productivity.
Conclusion: Tips to Engage Remote Employees
The future of employee engagement is virtual, vibrant, and powered by relentless learning. We’ve ditched the one-size-fits-all training manuals and embraced a digital playground. This is where micro-learning bursts ignite curiosity, webinars spark transformation, and personalized learning paths lead to individual mastery.
We’ve replaced isolation with virtual coffee breaks, skill swap workshops, and global guest speakers who broaden perspectives and break down silos. We’ve prioritized mental well-being, celebrated small wins with a confetti shower, and empowered our remote team to be more than just cogs in a machine – they’re the architects of our shared success.
This is the revolution of remote work – not a forced experiment but a vibrant tapestry woven with connection, growth, and the belief that distance can never become a hurdle.
We hope now you have enough tips on your fingers and tricks up your sleeve to engage remote employees in your team and company.
Now, let’s step beyond the screens, embrace the virtual handshakes, and embark on a journey where every team member, no matter their location, can thrive and contribute to a future as boundless as our imaginations.
Want to know how you can build effective teams? Contact us now!