I'm the type of employee who enjoys working and interacting in a team. Unfortunately my role puts me in an office separated physically from my boss and other team members. However, we interact daily via phone, instant message, and e-mail. Beyond this my boss goes even a step further to call up and say "Hey, how's it going?"
It seems like a small, insignificant gesture. And maybe to some that seems like an annoyance, but for my particular role, distance between offices, and my management needs, it's perfect. It's a simple, open-ended question that allows the employee to give as much or as little communication in return. Some days when he asks, I blather on and on. Other days - "I'm good."
It's what I call a download moment. I download to him what I've got going on, any questions I've been hanging on to, clarification, and even personal things like leaving early or just "Did you see Game of Thrones last night?" And he downloads to me anything upcoming or feedback.
Now you might be saying to yourself, "Well, Christine, not everyone has a boss and a work environment like you..." And that's entirely true, but ask yourself the following:
- Do you have employees who work alone?
- Do you have employees who enjoy interacting with others or working on a team?
- Do you have employees who work in remote offices/locations?
- Do you have employees?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then guess what - you should be doing this. It's vital importance that your employees interact with you on a daily if not weekly basis. Not only does it engage them and help establish a good working relationship, but it also helps you to get the details of what they're working on.
For some of you this might seem obvious... but ask yourself - When was the last time you asked your employee "Hey, how's it going?"