Brighton (UK), May 2020 – Skills Shift, a management training company focused on change - shifting managers' people skills to adapt to shifting business needs - has released a new training programme called Successfully Managing Homeworking Teams.
According to Skills Shift's managing director, Philippa Thomas, the course is targeted at the weak point of many organisations’ shift to homeworking, the specific skills people need to effectively manage a distributed workforce. "In the shift to homeworking," says Thomas, "much of the focus has been on the workforce: how they adapt, how they are equipped, and so on. This is understandable because for many, this is an entirely new way of working. But it is actually tougher for managers and team leaders to adapt, and this is often being overlooked, with many managers being expected to just cope."
Skills Shift's new training programme aims to address this and is, of course, delivered online. It consists of two two-and-a-half-hour modules delivered live by an experienced management trainer, with a third, optional, two hours' 'mastermind' coaching session.
The programme helps managers and team leaders to understand the changes needed to manage a distributed team: measuring KPIs and outputs; delegating to and trusting workers to whom they are not in proximity; communicating effectively; supporting the workforce; developing skills within a distributed workforce; dealing with emotions, team spirit, and morale; running effective remote meetings; and more.
"A distributed workforce needs to be managed in an entirely different way," says Thomas. "Proven management skills don't automatically translate into a distributed working environment. We build on the skills the managers already have and enable them to be far more effective when leading a homeworking team."
Skills Shift believes that people who can better manage a distributed workforce get far more from their teams and deliver more for the business. "It's clear that homeworking isn't a temporary fix to a short-term problem," concludes Thomas. "It's going to be an accepted part of the business landscape from this point forward. Those companies that get this right will have a real sustainable advantage in the new normal."