How to Handle Tough Conversations with Remote Workers

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The pandemic has accelerated remote work to the point where many companies choose to spend less on renting spaces and allow people to work remotely. However, there are situations when you do need to handle tough conversations with the remote workers. So you have to wonder, what can you do? Here are some tips and ideas to help you get started.

Check for warning signs
These warning signs can be anything from missing deadlines, having bad communication, low quality or incomplete work, and a change in behavior. Assessing the situation first and seeing what happens is very important. After that, you can start addressing any potential challenges before or as they arise.

Learn how to prepare yourself
Proper preparation for you and the other person is important. Communication is important and having to have a tough conversation should not be a surprise. You want to make things clear and let them know that it will be a different conversation. You can change the tone and language, but at the same time you want to maintain integrity and professionalism. No matter the situation, you want to explain it clearly and without any possible miscommunication.

Be focused and don’t generalized
Bring in examples and discuss those things that are indeed an issue. Knowing how to address any issue and ensure that you embrace flexibility is important. Yet at the same time, everything needs to be personalized for the employee. Adjust your feedback based on the person’s communication style. Being able to have the correct input can indeed help more than you might expect.

Try to separate the person from any problems
When having tough conversations with a remote worker it is important not to attack the person but to discuss the issue at hand. You want to avoid associating the person with any issues. It is normal to be defensive, but the idea is to avoid any personal attacks. So, not associating the person with the issue is a crucial thing here. Simply provide feedback on the issue and discuss alternative ways to do it better. Providing ideas for a positive outcome can help build trust and also keep everyone on track.

Figure out how to take a step back
The reason you want to do that is because it can actively open a lot of new opportunities. If you are very angry or too close to the situation, you may not be able to think clearly. You always want to avoid any emotional attack or response. Taking a step back and assessing everything will help immensely and it will help make the entire experience better for everyone. Which is exactly the thing to keep in mind.

As you can see, handling a challenging conversation does take some preparation. But in the end, it will help prevent issues, while making it easy to achieve excellent results. Take a step back, avoid any emotional response and you will find yourself amazed with the quality and benefits!

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