Remote Work is Here to Stay

A year has come and gone since quarantine pushed many people into the remote work environment, and although the end may finally be in sight, we may not necessarily be returning to the status quo.

The pandemic has seen many employees switching to working from home full-time, and for a good portion of folks, this is their first-ever experience with remote work. After hacking away at it for a year, some may find their motivation is flagging; not making the transition to remote work on our own terms has left plenty of us with lowered productivity, feelings of isolation and detachment, and a lingering sense that there has to be a better way to do this.

Even if the vaccination rollout continues to go smoothly, it may be several months before some businesses open their doors to the public or welcome staff back to the office, and depending on people’s circumstances, they may opt to continue working partially or fully from home. It is still very worth discussing the pros and cons of telecommuting for employees; this shift is one that’s been a long time coming and was simply fast-tracked forward by the pandemic.

Fortunately, as with many workplace trends, futurists predicted a transition away from full-time in-person work. As a result, there are a handful of keynote speakers and experts available who can help guide teams through a smoother and more fruitful transition and help them take advantage of all that this type of work can offer.

Marita Cheng, founder of Robogals, Aipoly & Aubot, is an expert on creating tight corporate cultures in organizations even when staff members are scattered across the globe. For teams made up of remote workers or those with employees beginning to make the shift, her keynotes on creating community and handling asynchronous communication can prove invaluable.

Another authority in the field of remote work, award-winning author, keynote speaker, and Harvard Business School Professor Tsedal Neeley literally wrote the book on the topic: Remote Work Revolution: Succeeding from Anywhere details how to lead through the change, prepare for future challenges, and build the most productive virtual routines. She’s also available to advise companies on keeping virtual teams motivated.

Strategic consultant, keynote speaker, and thought leader on the future of work Heather McGowan can also share insights on the topic of remote work. As someone who regularly assists leaders and their people in preparing for the fourth industrial revolution, she is an expert on adapting quickly to changes in the structure of the workplace and workforce, and actually asserts we will ultimately be better after the forced shift brought on by the pandemic.

Kevin Sheridan, a top employee engagement keynote speaker, is also an excellent choice for leaders looking to learn about effectively managing virtual teams. He provides illuminating information on building and maintaining trust, overcoming the challenges of remote work, and keeping team members motivated and productive.

Rounding off our list is Robert Waldinger, a happiness and work-life balance keynote speaker. While his expertise mainly lies in the realm of EQ, he’s the go-to to discuss how positive relationships among staff members strengthen organizations, and regularly aids management in fostering an environment that allows the cultivation of close partnership and friendships among employees, both virtually and in-person.

For those who can’t bring in an expert to advise them, our team can also offer up a few tips for helping newly virtual staff stay productive and maintain a feeling of connection to their colleagues. BigSpeak Speakers Bureau has had telecommuters on our staff for years, and 35% of our total workforce works full-time from home. They tell us that while the lack of commute and distracting coworkers are definite pluses, it is vitally important to self-discipline and stick to a regular schedule. Yes, you can wear sweatpants and slippers but you should get out of bed at a set time and block out your tasks. It is far too easy to lose track of projects.

To uphold company culture and combat isolation, we also recommend enabling staff members to see each other outside of mandated meetings. Privacy and a lack of distraction is a bonus, but our remote workers have mentioned feeling left out when in-person employees grab lunch or hit the beach together. To combat this, one of our team members set up a virtual watercolor painting workshop, another oversees a semi-regular virtual happy hour, and we’ve even had a jackbox game hour.

If you’re interested in facilitating the smoothest possible transition to remote work for your employees, please reach out to BigSpeak. One of our amazing advisors can assist you in tracking down the ideal motivational speaker who will cater to your needs and leave your team energized and empowered. Email or give us a call at 805-965-1400 to get in touch!