Loyalty in remote teams and how to inspire it
Employee loyalty is one of the core elements of a company's’ long-term success. Overlooking your remote team’s commitment is not a rare mistake. Neglecting to account for loyalty, and how it affects employees’ morale, can cost you valuable talent. Even worse, it can do so on short notice and leave you in a tight spot. Some simple, but important practices can help managers inspire the remote employees’ loyalty.
The way towards building loyalty is understanding what propels it. Always remember that is loyalty is a two-way street. Employees will be as loyal to you as they think you are to them.
Why is loyalty important
Loyalty is as relevant to remote workers as it is to any workforce. Most employees will always keep an eye out for better opportunities, especially in the case of remote employment. Treating them right will influence the way they would go about it. A disloyal worker wouldn’t bat an eye about leaving you in the middle of important business. They would damage your company's operation, its financial status and customer satisfaction rates. Having a loyal remote team will bring such unexpected situations to a minimum.
But loyalty isn’t only about retaining talent forever. It is tightly entwined with remote employees’ performance.
Work arrangements with remote employees tend to be more flexible. In this case, a lack of loyalty can result in missed deadlines. Disloyal employees are only concerned with hitting your targets to the extent it gets them paid. Remote workers’ performance is proportional to their motivation and loyalty. And remote employees’ performance, respectively, is commensurate with customer satisfaction.
Disloyal remote employees might try to take clients or undermine your image. Ex-remote workers can copy your company’s ideas and take them somewhere else. They might start looking for ways to benefit from you without contributing. The best way to prevent this is by showing loyalty to your remote workforce in the first place.
A high level of remote employee turnover means more training. More time spent on teaching means slowing down operations. And slower delivery might cause you to lose your clients’ trust.
How to inspire loyalty
Give a chance to less experienced remote workers
Most managers put experience above all. This requirement has created a catch-22 for many young and hungry talent waiting for a chance to prove their worth. Presenting eager remote employees with an opportunity to shine is like a binding spell. Recruiting talent that has everything to gain means building loyalty. Believing in one’s yet unproven abilities will form a loyalty bond that will last for a long time. You will go from being a manager to being a leader with loyal followers.
Open-minded application processes
Accommodate application processes that level the playing field. Ones that let potential employees compete with skills rather than on-paper experience. Recruiting talent through tasks that reveal qualities you consider important is the way. Doing this will make them feel like they have earned the position through their performance. They will feel the spot is meant for them. Remote employees will perceive your company as more than a job. They will form an emotional attachment, see you as a coach, a leader. They will become your protégé.
Naturally, you can’t build a remote workforce solely of inexperienced workers. Devising a balanced strategy is key. Have more experienced and proved “veterans” oversee young talent. Create an open culture which encourages mutual learning. A setup like this is one of the best working conditions for building loyalty.
Invest in training programs
Constructing training programs is an excellent way to earn loyalty. Remote employees see growth opportunities as a powerful job perk. It’s also hard to be disloyal to someone who has invested time in you and your future. When you train remote employees, it reinforces your belief in their potential. It also increases their marketability for future employment. When that time comes, those employees won’t just abandon the ship without leaving on good terms. Training programs are one of the most effective ways for building loyalty.
Being transparent about every aspect of the job is tightly entwined with loyalty. You need to communicate effectively if you want a loyal remote workforce. From the job description to financial rewards, to growth opportunities. Whatever they might be – good or bad - being honest and upfront about the job details is essential. You can’t have loyalty without trust. When remote employees feel deceived, they will leave you the first chance they get. Hiding even minor details will end up costing you more in the long run.
Be thoughtful about their well-being
You can do little things that can go a long way towards building loyalty, especially financially. This doesn’t mean you have to give out bonuses or turn remote employees into charity cases.
Let’s say they encounter unforeseen circumstances preventing them from work. Health issues, for instance.You can pay them the same on the promise of them making up for it the following month. You can also offer money in advance before holidays so they can get the most out of them. Pre-paying their salary in case of emergencies can also be of great help and a loyalty booster.
Such gestures of kindness are hard to forget and make a big difference. Working conditions that build loyalty often revolve around simple, human acts. They work as a vote of confidence, showing concern about remote employees’ well-being build loyalty. On the contrary, trying to cut back costs to the extent of limiting working conditions and potential can quickly ruin it.
As cliché, as it may sound, being nice can make all the difference to your remote workers’ loyalty. When you communicate, in whatever form, be nice and communicate effectively. Don’t talk down to your remote employees. Be firm, but not overly bossy. Say thank you. Show that you recognize their input. If you don’t, they give them polite pointers on how they can improve. Feeling valued is practically loyalty’s first cousin.
Seeing potential for growth is the second. Think about how you would talk to your superior. That’s exactly how you should talk to those below you on the company ladder, as well. The only difference is: you are the one running the show. How you run it, though, is entirely up to you. Find the happy medium between being a leader and being nice and you'll find loyalty too.
Building loyalty is as delicate as it is important. Different managers use different approaches to earning their team’s loyalty. Finding remote employees whose loyalty is worth having is our domain. Get in touch with DistantJob!