How confident are you that team members have all the tools they need to do their job from home? That question has repeatedly come up in pitstops over recent weeks.
It is a highly practical issue, although it seems far removed from the big issues of strategy and survival. Moreover, it could be the source of a significant performance losses with preliminary data putting the tooling of remote workers at 55%.
If this data holds up it could mean that every second worker is missing some of the equipment they need to be effective. As one executive put it ‘Some people have found themselves like Robinson Crusoe on the island trying to fashion tools from sticks and stones’. Here are some examples of the unusual performance losses in the home working environment:
How many of these factors are within the leader’s control? Well, some are and some are not. Here are some of the things we have heard in pitstops:
A good manager knows the set up that each person on their team has and does the best that they can to make allowances for that.
At its simplest managers need to be patient and understanding when it comes to interruptions and noise during conference calls.
Intervene to address any technology issues. One leader explains it this way: ‘I heard in a seminar that the modern leader ‘carries water for their troops’ – well I have been sending them monitors, printers, and anything else that they need via couriers. Not only am I sending them equipment, I am sending them a signal too – a signal that their work is important and that we must do all that we can to work through this crisis’.