By Asher Primrose, Director of Human Resources
As head of human resources for a completely virtual company, I am often asked what makes a successful remote employee.
In many ways, the same attributes that make someone a good remote team member are the characteristics that make for a good employee regardless of the work environment. That said, there are a few things that help set our virtual team up for success.
EFFECTIVE VIRTUAL COMMUNICATION IS KEY
Good communication is imperative to the success of any company, but the importance of it can be amplified in a virtual setting. Being completely virtual means that almost all communication among colleagues and other stakeholders is over the phone, email, or chat. Because we have little face-to-face interaction, it’s critical that our team members are able to emote engagement and warmth over the phone and other virtual communication channels. When interviewing potential new hires, I’m carefully evaluating how a person interacts and comes across over the phone, as this ability will be crucial to their success in a virtual role.
Good communication is imperative to the success of any company, but the importance of it can be amplified in a virtual setting.
CONSIDER SPACE AND BOUNDARIES
Our more than 100 team members work from home offices across the country, and it’s important they each dedicate a workspace that will help make them successful.
For me, I need a quiet space with limited distractions. I try to keep regular work hours and treat “going to work” like I would if I were going into an office every day. While it can be difficult sometimes, it’s important to step away from the computer after hours in order to compartmentalize work and home life in a healthy way.
At continued, we aim to build a strong rapport with one another and recognize that successful collaboration isn’t all about the work.
BE ENGAGED ALWAYS
At continued, we aim to build a strong rapport with one another and recognize that successful collaboration isn’t all about the work. We make a point to start our virtual meetings by checking in on one another rather than getting right down to business, and we always start our larger group meetings with something fun and interactive.
When new team members join our company, a virtual coffee date is scheduled with their executive team member to immediately set the tone that everyone at every level of the company is approachable. Throughout the year, we hold virtual happy hour events to enable people across teams to interact and spend some time together—with no talk of work allowed!
We only have one company-wide opportunity each year to come together in person, but we’ve found many ways to connect virtually and believe that being intentional about engagement helps team members feel more appreciated and valued.
Asher Primrose brings more than 20 years of Human Resources experience in small and medium-sized companies with deep specialty in performance management and employee/manager development.
She came to continued after 12 years with Hitachi Consulting, where she led their global performance management strategy and programs. In her role, she manages all aspects of HR including recruiting, employee engagement and development, company culture enhancement, management training, performance management, compensation strategy, benefits and wellness programs, HR policy, and employee data management.
Asher has a BA in Sociology from UCLA and is a Certified Birkman Method consultant. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two children and two dogs.