This year has seen millions of sales, marketing and technology employees around the UK working from home in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19. While many are enjoying their jobs, cutting out the commute and spending more time with their families, others that benefit from human interaction in an office environment have been longing for a return to ‘normal’.
However, with many businesses announcing that working from home will become a new standard option in their jobs, it's looking like flexible and home working will become the new normal, so making sure managers are equipped with the skills to keep remote teams motivated and positive is essential.
We’ve worked with sales leadership and business coaches to put together some tips and pieces of advice to help keep your sales teams going while working their jobs remotely.
Trust in your team
It’s important to focus on the outcomes of your sales team rather than how it’s been achieved. Trust that your team is working while at home even though you can’t see them.
Find a way to communicate
Many sales team members will be struggling with the lack of social interaction, so setting up regular catch ups will really help this. Also, setting up a WhatsApp or Slack group can help with chatting in between.
But avoid Zoom Fatigue
Make sure your video calls are concise and engaging by asking plenty of open questions and keeping them relaxed. The team will be more likely to look forward to them.
Encourage your sales team to take regular breaks and walks to get fresh air. It can be easy to let go of healthy habits and forget self care but ensuring your team are looking after themselves will improve mindset and productivity.
It can be hard to switch off at the end of the day without the commute home from the office. Also, be clear when you expect communication within the team, noones wants to receive emails at 7pm. Be strict with work times and unplug devices when you’re finished to avoid burnout.
Define what is possible for your team to achieve given their own personal circumstances and when you expect certain work to be achieved. It’s a lot easier when everyone’s on the same page!
Don’t forget to check in
Disconnected, overwhelmed, lonely and stressed might be some of the feelings you and your team might be experiencing. It might be harder to spot when someones going through a tough time when only having video contact, so make sure you check on individuals and see what support they need.
It’s all about celebrating the little things! Achieving anything during a pandemic is something to celebrate so be sure to notice the small wins to increase motivation.
Lead by example
Show the same level of commitment to successful remote working you expect from the team and they will follow. However, if something isn't working or you are struggling too, don't hide it and share it as you'd expect others to. Transparency will go a long way!
Everyone will have their own challenges during this tough time, so be empathetic and offer support rather than adding to the stressload.
Finally, don’t be afraid to say you’re struggling during this difficult time too and ask for support. Managing a team remotely comes with many challenges and it will be hard to provide adequate support for your team if you too are struggling. Be kind to yourself and your team!
To find out more about how to keep your teams motivated while working from home, watch the video using the link below!