How to build a positive feedback culture when your company is remote

As COVID-19 started its international unfold, corporations scrambled to re-create acquainted routines for workers working remotely. Day by day conferences grew to become video calls. Espresso runs changed into digital Donut chats. The preliminary stay-at-home orders of 2020 impressed a number of fast fixes to assist groups keep related and productive. Practically a 12 months has handed since these first, frantic days of the pandemic; now it’s time to commerce our non permanent measures for lasting remote work options.

Millions of people have already been vaccinated, however analysis exhibits that remote work is right here to keep. A 2020 survey of 4,700 skilled knowledge workers, funded by Slack, revealed that solely 12% need to return to the workplace full time. The bulk (72%) would favor a hybrid mannequin that mixes house and workplace work.

As Slack co-founder and CEO Stewart Butterfield informed the BBC, the pandemic has given us a once-in-a-generation likelihood to reimagine how we would like to do our jobs. “If we will transfer previous a long time of orthodoxy about 9-to-5, office-centric work,” says Butterfield, “there’s a chance to retain one of the best components of workplace culture whereas releasing ourselves from unhealthy habits and inefficient processes, from ineffective conferences to pointless paperwork.”


My very own company weathered a sequence of highs and lows all through 2020. Earlier than the calendar flipped in January, I mirrored on the massive classes I’ve discovered from COVID-19; my subsequent step is extra granular. My purpose was to guarantee our groups are geared up to succeed and thrive, no matter the place or how they’re working.

Set up your imaginative and prescient

The previous 12 months triggered a systematic reset, for higher and worse. Working from house helped many people to navigate the disaster, write Mark W. Johnson and Josh Suskewicz for Harvard Enterprise Evaluation, authors of Lead from the Future. However what would you like in the long run? Perhaps it’s larger productiveness, cheaper workplace area, much less journey, higher morale, or larger retention charges. Your imaginative and prescient will drive the adjustments required to notice it.

“Considering and planning from the long run again permits you to totally articulate what you hope to obtain with your new work system after which design its main parts from a ‘clear sheet,” Johnson and Suskewicz clarify, “unencumbered by how issues work right this moment or how they labored prior to now.”

Revisit your group’s system

Clear targets and values are a springboard for change. For instance, our company prizes creativity and steady enchancment over hyper-speed outcomes. We care deeply about guaranteeing our staff are challenged and fulfilled—each at work and of their private lives. Which means group members will proceed to set their very own schedules, so long as they collaborate successfully with their small, multi-functional groups. And it could be a while earlier than we will share chef-prepared salads within the workplace, however we might institute a meal stipend or present ingredient deliveries for workers working from house.

You may additionally need to revisit employees wellness packages or recalibrate advantages. A tricked-out workplace gymnasium could now not be important. As a substitute, might you give staff a health stipend to use for brand new sneakers, physiotherapy periods, or exercise tools? Even employees who do return to the workplace or embrace a hybrid mannequin may gain advantage from better alternative in your wellness insurance policies.

Assess your instruments

For years, we’ve ensured staff have highly effective computer systems, huge screens, and enormous desks to unfold out on. We’ll nonetheless supply these instruments for in-office employees, however after nearly a 12 months of digital operation, our groups might need found completely different wants. Ask your staff what’s working, and what’s not. Do they want a {hardware} stipend or assist with their Wi-fi invoice? I do know many corporations face tight budgets, however some classes might need gone unspent in 2020 and the funds might be reallocated.


Enterprise and communication software program are additionally ripe for re-evaluation. From safe messaging instruments to video conferencing to digital IT help, remote work calls for distinctive instruments. Ship a survey asking staff what they depend on and what might be decommissioned. The identical goes for communication processes. It’s tempting to begin a video name for each dialog, however typically the telephone or digital chat is much less taxing. Discover your assembly methods and refresh any tips. Groups must be free to talk how they like, nevertheless it’s useful to remind those who they’ve choices.

Be empathetic to numerous wants

Lastly, take into account what employees want to handle shifting private duties. Perhaps you need to reimburse childcare prices, or introduce versatile depart for caregivers. And keep in mind that no two households look alike. Youthful staff and people who reside alone would possibly want completely different help than older staff with bigger households. Analysis additionally exhibits ladies are shouldering a disproportionate share of unpaid chores and childcare, and should proceed to battle at the same time as COVID-19 wanes. We want to preserve pushing for true gender equality in all realms, however within the meantime, feminine staff (particularly mother and father) might have distinctive preparations with better flexibility. The pandemic confirmed us that remote work has actual advantages, nevertheless it has to work equally for everybody.

Aytekin Tank is the founding father of JotForm, a common on-line type builder. Established in 2006, JotForm permits customizable knowledge assortment for enhanced lead technology, survey distribution, cost collections, and extra.