How to Mentor in a Remote Workplace
There is a steady demand for managers to mentor from a remote workplace, but it can be difficult to set up the kind of mentoring environment that supports the objectives of both parties. The research showed that mentoring is an effective way of building and supporting practices in organizations by connecting mentors with those who need their support. According to educator Jonathan Osler, the following are ways business managers can mentor from a remote workplace.
Maintain personal connections with your employees. You’ll find it much easier to work with them effectively and efficiently if you first establish a personal relationship. Start by getting to know them better, and then connect with them on social media like Facebook or Twitter. If someone is available on Skype, you can set up a video call immediately!
Combine video conferencing with conference calls. Video conferencing is an excellent way to build relationships with your employees. If you have the technology, you can use video conferencing meetings to keep in touch with each one of them.
Use Slack as a collaboration tool to collaborate virtually. Slack is a free messaging app you can use to virtually keep in contact with your employees. You can enable the app’s mobile features so that anyone on your team can see and respond to important messages or notifications no matter where the employee is or what time it is.
You might use Slack to announce upcoming events or share relevant news; alternatively, you might use it to organize group chats and share important files with your coworkers. You could also create separate channels for each employee and project so that messages don’t get mixed in one place.
Set goals for each employee. Setting the right goals for your employees will help them perform well and work more effectively. For example, you can challenge them to increase sales, become more productive or improve a particular skill. A great way to do this is with an ongoing goal-setting system.
You might try creating a Google Analytics report to collect sales information and then distribute it among your team members at regular intervals. This lets you discuss possible solutions while they’re still fresh in everyone’s mind (e.g., how employees can improve sales figures over the next few weeks). Alternatively, you could create an online forum on Google Groups and invite everyone on the team to participate in setting goals that meet their individual needs.
You can also reward your employees for meeting a certain goal that they’ve set. Consider using Recognize, an online rewards platform that lets you award virtual badges and prizes to show appreciation for employees’ hard work. You can use it to thank people for a job well done, motivate them to work faster or reward them for striving toward specific goals.
Through virtual mentoring, mentors and mentees can connect through video conferencing, webinars, and other technology-based communication methods to exchange knowledge and experiences. According to educator Jonathan Osler, by taking a virtual approach to mentoring, organizations can begin to increase the overall effectiveness of their employees.