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New to Remote Work? Here's How it's Done.

Inc. logo Inc. 7/22/2022 Sarvarth Misra
New to Remote Work? Here's How it's Done. © Photo: Getty Images New to Remote Work? Here's How it's Done.

Better recruit talent, strengthen culture, and increase productivity in the workplace with these best practices

The rise of dispersed workforces has changed how organizations operate day to day -- how they recruit talent, evolve company culture, and communicate in business altogether. Or at least it should.

Corporate leaders need to accept the new reality of remote working: being completely agile from the top down. But although navigating dispersed teams can be pretty challenging, it is not improbable, as many organizations are finding out. In 2022, leaders who wish to do this successfully would do well to invest time in these three critical areas.

1. Expand your talent pipeline -- from regional to national.

Historically, employees needed to be located close to the office. No longer. And as job seekers search for global, purpose-driven work that provides them with a chance to grow professionally, employers have a unique opportunity to experiment.

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Decades-old barriers to employment have now dissolved, capturing the attention of organizations of all sizes including Fortune 100 companies, such as Google and Apple. With organizations choosing to continue operating as a dispersed or hybrid workforce, leaders realize that changing how they recruit --from locally to nationally or internationally-- can help them fulfill their own talent needs. In doing so, leaders also level the proverbial playing field by expanding their recruitment scope. The term, "diverse team," takes on new meaning, reflecting employees from different industries and geographies. And this re-envisioned talent pipeline improves organizations' ability to future-proof their retention.

2. Build a digital company culture.

'Digital culture' is not a new concept; it stems from the idea of corporate digital transformation. Across industries, organizations are moving beyond traditional structures and digitizing their business processes and customer relationships. But changing company culture in this way doesn't happen overnight.

To build a strong digital culture, leaders first need to be more intentional about the environment they want to create across the organization. This means being clear upfront about the outcomes or results that are most important to the company: streamlined remote work processes and improved collaboration through the latest digital tools, for example. Leaders --from the C-suite on down-- should also manage the dispersed workforce more responsibly, mitigating the side effects of implementing new technology and ways of working, such as employee burnout. And this means encouraging communication from a diverse group of employees and developing sound process plans. Communicative and accessible leadership like this goes an incredibly long way when it comes to establishing a foundation on which a digital culture thrives.

3. Create trust and transparency in the workforce.

Trust among the workforce is fragile; it is earned over time but can be lost in an instant. The same goes for transparency. Nevertheless, both trust and transparency are vital to a dispersed workforce because they together foster openness, inclusiveness, and collegiality --wherever employees are situated.

Leaders who accept this premise bring themselves another step closer to navigating a dispersed workforce successfully. They are able to take immediate action on issues that are important to employees and help each person fully understand changes to systems and processes (as mentioned above). In other words, they are able to make employees feel more heard, informed, and aligned. After all, the latter are drivers of the company's success, too. Those with ground-floor knowledge and influence become the 'voice' of the latest initiatives.

At the end of the day, growing the talent pipeline, nurturing digital company culture, and generating trust and transparency will make a dispersed workforce feel more supported by corporate leadership and connected to the overall mission of the organization.


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