A strong company culture is key when creating a positive work environment, but remote workers often receive little benefit from offices with great working environments. Fortunately, companies such as Edoc have demonstrated that fostering an engaging remote culture is both possible and worthwhile. The company's virtual culture model has five essential elements.
Creating a Team Atmosphere
Edoc CEO Jim Mullaney reminds businesses that focusing solely on connective technology while failing to connect individuals is a recipe for failure. One step toward creating a team-oriented environment is to avoid pitting employees against each other, a method many sales companies utilize. This creates a competitive culture rather than a cooperative one. Foster an environment in which a win for the team is a win for every member as well as for the company. Encourage remote workers to offer and ask for help among themselves, and limit department divisions in the remote workforce to encourage more teamwork.
The Importance of Good Leadership
In the virtual world, traditional office leadership, which focuses on commanding and controlling the workforce, simply doesn't work, according to Mullaney. Rather than thinking of themselves as bosses, employers need to act as stewards of the workforce. Focus on hiring self-sufficient employees, and provide them the proper tools and resources to self-manage. For this aspect, businesses should be open-minded to the changing face of the modern workforce. Millennials may work differently from older generations, but they are essential to keeping things current while fully embracing the technical side of being remote workers.
Maintaining Healthy Service Relationships
Employees and supervisors only make up a part of a thriving culture. The other part takes the form of vendors and other service partners. Maintain consistent communications with suppliers, sharing the current vision for the company and asking for feedback.
Autonomy for Remote Workers
Making remote workers feel like an essential part of the company takes more than just a flexible schedule. Give workers full autonomy by involving them in the decision-making process. Hold annual, biannual or quarterly meetings with full financial transparency, and provide them a chance to brainstorm solutions. You can also assign remote workers to run virtual team-building exercises or help onboard new remote employees.
A Culture of Purpose and Principles
The way a company operates is the lifeblood of a strong business culture. The company's values and purpose should drive everything from defining operating principles to creating a code of conduct. A hiring process that focuses on finding remote workers who match the culture is also essential.
An employee-focused culture is the key to success in the virtual business world. You want your remote employees to be not just reliable, but also enthusiastic and comfortable in their jobs. Providing an excellent company culture outside the walls of the conventional office space turns your company into a community, and it's in your best interest.
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