How to set expectations and manage newly remote teams

by Sirius People

Estimated Reading Time: minutes

At the outset of the pandemic, many of our clients were facing a number of challenges to making their teams fully remote.

As organisations and senior leadership teams rightfully focused on creating business continuity plans to ease the transition into a fully remote workforce, many managers were caught off guard with the sudden shift from an office environment to all employees needing to work from home.

However, in an emergency situation, like the one we find ourselves in now, training management on how to manage remotely is often the last thing on anyone’s mind.

After all, if they’ve been trained how to manage in person, it’s the same as doing it remotely, right?

Not quite.

Just as each manager has their own personal management style, they’re also likely to view remote work in a different way – especially when it’s been brought on by an emergency circumstance rather than an independent company decision rolled out over time.

Some managers will see it as an opportunity for their team members to get more work done, as they’re uninterrupted by their colleagues. Others may feel disorganised and fraught as they don’t get the energy of their team members when they’re not all together.

It’s a tough role to be in, as the mediator between the front line (your employees) and the company’s vision.

But, as 70 per cent of an employee’s engagement is driven by their manager, it’s imperative that you know how to manage your teams remotely to ensure that they can get the most out of your teams during this uncertain time.

To ensure we fully understand how going remote has impacted managers, we put together a four-question survey to deepen our understanding of the difficulties our clients were facing.

Here’s what we found:


  • 88 per cent of survey respondents say that their company has a remote work strategy.

  • 1 in 5 survey respondents admits that he/she hasn’t been trained/advised on how to manage a remote working team.

  • Common challenges of a newly remote team include:

           - Managers are unable to monitor work as closely when working remotely, which may lead to long-term issues particularly for junior employees who require more assistance.

           - Managers are not trained to provide support for employee mental health and feelings of isolation or loneliness.

           - Managers are not being directed on how to maintain employee engagement, morale and company culture throughout this remote work period.

           - Managers are unsure about how to maintain consistent communication over a longer period of remote work.

Off the back of these results, we put together our latest whitepaper on how to set expectations and manage newly remote teams to ensure managers understand where they may struggle, how to ask for more support, and how to give more support to their team using our best practices.

Download your free copy today!

Hiring Manager

Employee turnover on the rise?

Stop it now with our

Ultimate Guide to Remote Employee Retention!

Get your free guide now >>