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#WFH: What Influences Remote Job Performance?

How do virtual workers adopt to new team members? How does the organization provide ongoing support for existing and new virtual team members?
Data mining and analytics can give organizations much needed insight into where to focus these efforts. Qualitative interviews and observations still have an important role to play in indicating what the needs really are. All methods of empirical examination are important in order to give organizations insights for learning opportunities and performance improvement. Realizing that performance can be influenced by individual personalities and personas, group dynamics, socialization aspects, organizational policies (or lack of them) and technical and context specific content knowledge can help provide guidelines for performance success.

In a virtual environment, it may be more difficult to learn a team’s processes and procedures. Often nothing is documented or if it is it is not conveyed. There is also the problem of a constant struggle between control and freedom, trust and doubt, and results and responsibilities. Information is communicated both explicitly and implicitly in the workplace. This is true of the virtual workplace as well. People need to be noticed and recognized for their efforts. One of the biggest fears of virtual workers is that they are invisible and will be passed over for recognition
and/or promotions. In many ways, the virtual workplace requires a more hands-on, not hands-off, approach.

Visibility is important in the virtual workplace. If management is going to understand what contribution individuals are making, they have to establish normal expectations and how they are going to be measured. Setting clear performance expectations is essential. Tacit knowledge is conveyed from observation much of the time, so the good news is that in a virtual environment workers are less likely to learn from bad examples and negative coworkers.

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