How To Help Onsite Team Members Thrive
It’s tricky balancing the mindsets of workers with distinct environments. The remote worker is enjoying the flexibility and the lower stress that comes with forgoing the commute and staying at home to work. The onsite worker, however, may feel that they have a greater stability by coming to the worksite every day. But after learning of the leniency and flexibility offered to their remote counterparts, their enthusiasm and energy may wane.
Photo: Courtesy of Wix Media
This poses a problem for leadership. How do you keep both sides happy, avoid dissension between them and still keep onsite workers engaged?
Start by asking questions. Letting your onsite team members know that you care and that you are interested in their needs can go a long way to instill trust as well as discern what changes they’d like to see. Get onsite team members to think about and identify what they want more of. I would explore the possibilities and themes of freedom, flexibility, and flourishing, and what that looks like for them as they work onsite. Ask them to explore ways to co-create a more enjoyable environment than ever before. Being onsite gives them more skin in the game, so to speak. They’re poised for bigger opportunities and have a stronger voice in the status and the future of the organization and their careers. Let them know this is how you see their contributions and encourage them to speak up freely about what they need to thrive.
Ask about their future and how their careers could be improved. What path can they design, and ask leaders to consider, for them to have more fulfillment in their work? What does that look like here and now, in the short-term and over time?
You may need to acknowledge that in time, they may no longer want to be the engineer on the plant floor but instead, be a remote engineer. What would it take for that to happen and keep the flow going in the plant? Encourage them to lean in as leaders and map out the solution. How will they help you find the people who will do what needs to be done and is being done by them today?
This approach to lifting people up who may be relatively dissatisfied or envious of remote workers who seem to have the perks, will go a long way to helping them thrive. Use it as an opportunity to create a culture that is constantly in pursuit of having everyone experience the thrill, fulfillment, and comfort of the work that they do, wherever they do it. And for those who do work onsite, it’s important that they have the appropriate compensation befitting their sacrifice.
The ultimate quest is for enriching the work, the environment, and the experience of every worker. But this cannot be achieved without recognizing there are pros and cons of every role and every dimension of work. To ignore these distinctions is naive. To thoughtfully approach them as a competent leader, and work with team members to co-create a healthier culture and career, is critical.
Renwick Brutus' career has spanned roles as research economist, investment advisor, entrepreneur and consultant. He holds an MBA from Fordham University and has been recognized for his outstanding achievement in sales and business leadership. Today, Renwick applies his unique blend of business strategy and interpersonal skills to help individuals prosper and companies grow. He is actively engaged as an entrepreneur, advisor and executive coach to business leaders. Contact him by email and LinkedIn.