CROSS MY HEART HOPE TO DIE this post is for home service business owners.
Two years ago, if you had told any business owner that employees would be more productive working from home than in an office, most would have scoffed and said, “Yeah, right. OKAY.”
But the pandemic sent the workforce home in 2020, and what was considered a short-term solution to flatten the curve is the new working model for many businesses.
Employees have loved their newfound “freedom” during their workday, and studies are showing that for many types of jobs, having short bursts of focus has improved overall productivity for businesses.
But what about for managers trying to lead their teams, build camaraderie, and ensure deadlines and goals are met? How do you do that when you can’t see your people everyday?
Mike O’Neill, founder and owner of Bench Builders, focuses on how to help business owners solve their tough process and people problems so they can sleep better and grow their business.
In a remote work environment, many managers tend to take their employees for granted, assuming everything is okay. But the problem: you still have to communicate regardless of the work environment.
Here are THREE TIPS to managing a remote workplace while inspiring your team to still go above and beyond.
1. Offering a hybrid schedule
A lot of employers are finding that even though they have the technology to be fully remote, people still want to feel connected and be together in person.
This has been formative in creating a blended, or “hybrid” working solution that allows employees to work remotely some days and report to the office on others.
If you have employees who are working remotely, they probably liked the flexibility, but they may very well miss this sense of connection. Offering the opportunity to come in and work at the office can be actually embraced and help productivity!
2. Morning meetings are making a comeback
We aren’t sure when the morning meeting disappeared for many companies, but we want to start a movement to bring it back, especially if you aren’t already having a morning meeting!
No, not just a meeting to have a meeting, but a chance to come together as a team at the beginning of the day creates a sense of “We are in this together.”
Use this time as a daily check-in to build that sense of awareness. It’s a great opportunity to share with what’s going on in other parts of the business.
3. Weekly (or bi-weekly) one-on-one check-ins with every employee
“Why in the world would I need to meet with my employees every week?!”
That thought may be running through your head.
But part of being a great manager is making sure your team feels heard and valued.
This is a conversation that may not necessarily be work. It’s a conversation. “Tell me what’s going on in your world.” It adds the human element back into the mix.
If you’re going to have a one-on-one, make it sincere; don’t just go through the motions. Ask questions, and really listen to what they say, because more often than not, what employees need is to feel like they’ve been heard.
So how do these tips apply to us in the home service industry?
Danielle gives us some great tips on what a typical morning meeting could look like for your business.
Even if your techs are dispatched from home, you could still meet over Zoom or another platform each morning around 7:30 or 8:00 to make sure that everybody is unified and moving towards the same outcome and execution.
Once a week, the meeting could focus on process training, testimonies from customers, or core values you are going over as a company.
Sometimes, we assume that once a tech, dispatcher, or manager is trained, they always remember everything about their training. But over time, everyone’s own habits creep into the job, and retraining and going over processes ensures your employees are well-informed and on the same page.
Some ideas would be
- How you arrive on site
- How you get out of the van
- Where you park the van
- How you approach and greet the customer
- This is how you go and get your tools
- How you present your prices
- How you follow up with the customer
- How you do your paperwork and process payments
- How you say thank you
- How you ask for a referral
- How you ask for a review
- Role-playing customer service answering the phone
Many of us thought that working remotely would come and go, but it’s still here, and it’s not something that will soon go away. Finding a way to blend the flexibility and work-life balance of remote work with the productivity of office work will enhance employee satisfaction, team motivation, and will help to turn profits if you have the right processes in place.
The Ruthless elimination of hurry [05:20]
The Number 600 [10:28]
Productivity has gone up [17:25]
Team company meetings [24:18]
The service call life cycle [25:20]
Giving your technician’s structure [27:36]
Atomic Habits [32:08]
Hiring Matrix [25:29]
Contact Mike O’Neill [36:30]
LINKS & RESOURCES
Books we recommend during this episode
-Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones [32:08]