By Milan Shetti, CEO Rocket Software
Over the past two years, many business leaders received a crash course in managing a distributed workforce — whether they wanted to or not. While adjusting to fully remote work presented challenges for all, we at Rocket Software were lucky to have plenty of experience thanks to our global workforce, with centers of excellence strategically located throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.
It does require thoughtfulness and extra care to ensure every member of a global workforce feels included and supported by their employer and connected to both their colleagues and their organization’s overarching mission. And given any good leader understands that when their employees thrive, the company thrives, the longevity and success of a company truly depend on its people.
Here are three considerations for leaders balancing a global workforce to grow and succeed amid the Great Resignation:
- Support retention in new ways. The pandemic showed us how difficult it is to keep work and life truly separate, and employees increasingly want the option to integrate them in a way that works for their personal needs and their success at their organization. Balancing meetings across time zones adds to this complexity, and it’s important to keep in mind that as we often ask employees to join meetings outside their normal working hours, it’s only reasonable we consider that they may need to attend to personal matters they might usually address at that time during normal working hours. This is no reflection on anyone’s commitment to their job and employer, but rather points to the need for flexibility as they integrate each aspect of their life. Consider going beyond standard employee assistance programs with one-on-one coaching that ensures every employee feels heard and region-specific community connectors can support engagement in each of an organization’s communities across the globe.
- Take a holistic approach. Even the most considerate of leaders may find themselves thinking of just one group of employees when planning certain events or organizational engagements. And while community-specific events are necessary to create a sense of belonging, it’s just as important to create organization-wide opportunities for employees to participate in something together. For example, we at Rocket Software recently announced a season-long sponsorship of the Boston Red Sox. Both our organizations are headquartered in Massachusetts with a global footprint, making it a great match. We’re running a series of social media contests to engage employees and provide a chance to hand out some great prizes. However, we understand that not all our employees are Red Sox fans, let alone baseball fans! With that in mind, we’re taking into account the many ways our global workforce may enjoy sports, whether it’s a local team, their children’s youth teams, or even a pickup baseball game or bowling league. We’re encouraging employees to tell us how they enjoy sports in their region, and randomly selecting winners to receive a cash prize to use toward tickets to see their favorite sports team or sporting event. This kind of consideration ensures that even when an event or engagement is rooted in one geographic location, everyone can participate and benefit.
- Showcase what makes you great. We’ve established the success of our organizations would not be possible without our people. Are you putting those people — in every one of your locations — in the spotlight? Highlight your global workforce on every channel available to you, internally and externally. Do you have a company blog that features a rotation of guest authors? Make sure those authors reflect your distributed workforce. LinkedIn is the perfect place to showcase your people and where they’re from. Ask employees from different regions what they love about working at your company and feature a photo of them with their role, location and quote on social media to not only ensure they feel appreciated, but to show other employees — and increasingly importantly, potential future employees — the global reach of your organization.
The most important factor to keep in mind when fostering a great corporate culture across a global workforce is that no matter where a company’s headquarters are or where the CEO is located, it’s the employees in each and every region who are the heart of the organization. Prioritizing them is key to ensuring longstanding success.
To learn more about Rocket and how we support our employees, visit https://www.rocketsoftware.com/rocket-jobs