By Thomas Griffin, co-founder and president of OptinMonster. Entrepreneur, investor and software expert. Helping you be a better leader in your organization.
With the rapid digitalization of the world in the last few years, there has been a major shift in the way people do things. One of the biggest shifts that surprised everyone is the way many of us work in the post-pandemic era.
Unlike a decade ago, many people now no longer have to walk into their company’s office every day to do their jobs. We can go to work without even stepping outside of our homes. Sure, companies like ours that had a fully remote team existed even before the pandemic, but it rapidly accelerated the remote work trend.
One survey of adult professionals revealed that 82% believe that remote work is the future of work. This means that as a leader, you may need to change the way you lead.
To be able to run your workplace smoothly, you may need to gain new leadership skills or strengthen skills that perhaps never seemed all that important to you before. So what are these skills?
1. Effective Communication
One of the most important skills for remote business leaders is the ability to communicate effectively. When you run a remote business, you can hire talented minds from different locations without worrying about physical boundaries. When that happens, you may not get to meet your employees in person too often. But as a leader, you’ll have to convey your ideas, thoughts, opinions, etc. to them. That’s where your communication skills become important. It’s crucial to know how to convey your message effectively over the phone, via video chat and by email.
Whatever message you convey should be conveyed with clarity. This will help your team members be more efficient in their tasks. Unless they understand the purpose of your idea, thought or concern, they won’t know how to use it to achieve your business goals.
So work on developing your communication skills. Be clear and concise. It’s important that you watch your tone and be polite with the person you’re communicating with. Also, practice being a good listener to be a good communicator. Being a good listener helps you understand others’ perceptions and concerns, and it helps you learn from them.
2. Technical Knowledge
As a leader, you’re the one managing your business. This means it’s important to have a basic understanding of the technology that enables you to run it. As a remote company, you probably handle a lot of tasks online.
You may have your team to help you, but you can’t always depend on others for everything. Make sure you’re able to evaluate, identify and generate information without having to rely on others.
But without proper technical knowledge, you won’t be able to do that. You may not be an engineer or a technical person, but when you’re the leader, it doesn’t matter. You may be forced to handle things even when you’re not skilled at them. But doing it with uncertainty can only make things worse. So why not acquire the skills you need?
Try sitting with your web or software developer and having them show you the basics. You can always reach out to them again if you need further help.
Many people love working remotely because of the flexibility it offers. By working from home or a coffee shop or another desired location, employees not only can accomplish their jobs but also have more time to do things they love.
But some leaders don’t give their employees the freedom to work on their own schedules. Instead of letting them do their jobs when they’re best able to, these bosses try to micromanage their employees without even realizing that by doing so they may actually be lowering their productivity.
So stop micromanaging, and be more flexible about when employees can do their jobs. Remember, it’s not the amount of time they put into the work that should matter. What matters is how productive they are overall and how many goals they meet. If they are meeting their goals, you don’t have anything to worry about.
Over To You
The pandemic changed the world a lot. Many of us do things differently now. Adjusting to the new way of working not only will make things easier on you, but you’ll also be a better leader.