Communicating with teams and clients during lock-down

April, 2020

Remote working and communication

 
Struggling with remote working communication during lockdown? We have looked at some of the key advice out there.

Enforced remote working has placed many limitations on many of our clients. They are unable to spend as much time as usual in the locations they are re-designing and are unable to work with their team in a physical creative space. Even for those who are used to working independently, there are some very different circumstances at play right now. So, whether you are trying to manage a team or are being managed remotely these tips are worth considering:

1. Make your expectations clear

If you manage a design team who are working remotely during the lockdown, it is important that you make your expectations known. A heavy handed approach isn’t being suggested here, just the good practice of ‘goal setting’ and being available to discuss how those goals are being met (in a potentially more distracting environment). The CIPD in their advice state that you should be clear about mutual expectations and trust your team to get on with it without micromanaging. They suggest focussing on results rather than activity.

2. Don’t overload your clients with information

Your clients will be going through their own challenges during the lockdown and it is important you are on-hand to answer any queries or questions they may have, and your willingness won’t go unnoticed. You should reassure your clients you are taking the appropriate steps to ensure you are operating safely and try to provide them with a new timeline. The important thing here is getting the balance right between overloading clients with information and being a welcome distraction and useful source of information.

3. Schedule regular check-ins

Often when working remotely for the first time, employees can struggle to adapt to the new environment and can find themselves feeling very isolated. If you manage a team of people, try to regularly check in on them by organising daily or weekly video calls and scheduling regular company conference calls. The advice is also to make time for social conversations. This increases rapport and eases communication between people who may not meet often. It also reduces feelings of isolation.

4. Reach out to potential new clients and existing suppliers

Whilst you may be focused on your clients and employees, it is important you also maintain healthy communications with existing suppliers and reach out to any new companies that you would like to work with in the future. Many companies are saying that they are now getting hold of senior decision makers they previously struggled to get hold of.  Suppliers are likely to be keen to share training and insights with you, Duraflor for example, is offering product trend training, this could be the ideal time to learn more about specific products and trends, which you may not have had the time to do in the past.

 

We are busy looking at the many ways we can help our customer base with extra services. Not only through CPDs but also how our Group Companies can help with an array of flooring preparation and sanitisation products.

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