12 November 2020

Top managers play a crucial role in cultivating a healthy remote workforce. Here are five reasons why good leadership defines a great workplace and some tips for getting there

2:00 Min

Leadership is hard, and the shift to remote or hybrid teams has made it a lot harder. The traditional in-person top management skills, such as confidence, extroversion, and intelligence, may not necessarily translate to excellence in virtual leadership, says a new study published by the Journal of Business and Psychology.

1. A “do-er” leader improves work satisfaction

Research shows that employee satisfaction and wellbeing rates are directly correlated to management relations. Today, nearly 75 percent of employees claim that work stress comes from dealing with difficult bosses. In a virtual environment, successful leaders are people who are “do-ers,” says a BBC study. Managers who are organised, dependable, and productive become better leaders in reducing stress and running more collaborative remote teams.

2. Good bosses make jobs more meaningful

In a recent survey, the IZA Institute of Labor Economics found that leaders may make or break job meaningfulness, or how a person perceives the job’s added value to his/her life. The study found that healthy manager-employee relationships are 4.6 times more impactful than other characteristics in determining job meaningfulness. According to Forbes, great virtual leadership focuses on meaningful communication to strengthen relationships, empower teams, and reaffirm a greater purpose behind daily tasks.

3. Role modelling boosts employee happiness

When leaders “walk the talk,” they promote employee respect and accountability, two ingredients to happy remote teams, according to The Boss Factor by McKinsey. The article affirms that successful leaders understand that they are part of the virtual workplace solution. Thus, virtual management requires embracing flexibility, rewarding accomplishments, and trusting their teams with autonomy.

4. Servanthood uplifts team performance

Servant leaders prioritize the needs of their teams, which in turn serves and benefits the organization. Many corporations today, such as Starbucks and Intel, use servant leadership practices to build kinship and enhance team performance in a globally remote workforce. Servant leaders uplift their teams by removing roadblocks, fostering connections, finding resources, and protecting a diverse and inclusive workforce.

5. Empathic management builds (virtual) trust

Leaders who practice empathy cultivate a network of trust, openness, and improved performance, research confirms. “Being a leader does not mean being in charge, rather taking care the of the people in our charge,” says author and lecturer Simon Sinek on What It Means To Be A Leader. Successful leadership recognises that good performers will continue to deliver great results, whether or not they are under direct supervision.