It can be a challenge to manage non-desk employees, mostly because they’re regularly on the move and you’re not seeing them face-to-face as often as you’d like. But those employees are just as important as your desk employees (some may argue they are even more important). So how can you keep non-desk employees happy? Here are 5 easy things to try:
1. Offer Opportunities for Growth
Because non-desk workers are usually out in the field, they may feel like opportunities for advancement are limited. In some organizations that concern may be entirely valid. In that case, it may be time to rethink how non-desk workers move up in your company. However, if there are opportunities available the problem may simply be that employees don’t know about it. Remedy that by keeping them informed, which leads us to…
2. Stay in Touch
Communicating with employees is always important, but it’s doubly so for non-desk workers. They already feel left out because they aren’t in the office. Make sure they stay on top of all important communication as best you can. With all the technology available today, there really is no reason non-desk workers can’t be just as informed as desk workers. (Need help reaching them? Check out our previous post with 10 easy ways to reach non-desk employees.)
3. Listen to Them
While employees do want to feel informed and on top of what is going on in the company, they also want to know they are being heard. Your communication system should keep the flow from both sides easy and transparent. Let non-desk employees know that you care about what they have to say by really listening to them.
4. Offer Face-to-Face Time
When was the last time you saw your non-desk employees? If you can’t remember, it’s been too long. It may not be practical to have regular meetings with non-desk employees, but it’s important that they do have the opportunity to see people at the company in person occasionally. Getting in a little face-to-face time will also help them feel like they are being heard and are an important part of the company.
5. Show recognition
Non-desk workers can feel as though their efforts aren’t recognized as often as their more traditional counterparts. In fact, 17% of non-desk employees cite that lack of recognition as one of the shortcomings of being a non-desk employee. Keep your non-desk workers happy by showing them how much you appreciate their work.
In case you didn’t notice, these five things really aren’t all that different from what you would do to keep your desk employees happy! But the very nature of non-desk work makes these five things more difficult to accomplish. It may be harder to do for non-desk workers, but it’s just as important.
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