Leading from Home Office

With these 5 tips, leaders can successfully lead from their home office.

Note: The tips refer to the 5 core tasks from the T.I.G.E.R.-Method© (following links lead to articles in German): Tell, Integrate, Grow, Encourage and Realize. I have developed, tested and refined this method over the last 15 years. At its core is an enabling and supportive leadership attitude, thanks to which employees develop, create opportunities and move the company forward. (more)

Home Office: Moving forward together even at a distance.

Tip 1 (to TELL): How to touch employees.

In the dictionary, resonance is described as “resonance of one body in the vibration of another body”. This is exactly what it is all about: Employees should pick up your vibration, resonate with it and transmit it to others - even if they are not physically present. Use the simple structure: yesterday, today and tomorrow. Especially in special times, employees look ahead spellbound. They ask themselves what lies ahead and whether they are (still) up to it. In doing so, they forget their own competencies and experiences. If you now establish a connection to the recent past (“gerstern”), you strengthen the connection to these competencies and abilities to act in the here and now. Put “today” in relation to “yesterday”: What can employees rely on? Who can they trust? Then turn your attention to “tomorrow”: What will continue to apply in the future? Help employees tie their ships to anchored buoys.

Tip 2 (on INTEGRATE): How to connect employees into proactive, agile and versatile collectives.

Trust is created at the intersection of what you say and what you do. (more (in German)) So pay attention to what and how they say something. After all, video conferences in particular can tempt you to talk too much to trigger a reaction. Create security and trust by speaking clearly, in a structured manner and by picking up specific answers in order to minimize the scope for interpretation or misunderstandings (and loss of trust) as much as possible.

Tip 3 (on GROW): How to develop potential in employees.

For example, strengthen the self-efficacy of your employees. There are basically four ways to achieve this: repeat successes, observe them and then have them copied, convince them personally to take new steps or appeal to a higher value. The third alternative is the home office: Win others as a person of respect, convince them. This has nothing to do with authoritarian behavior. You gain respect if you care about others and take yourself back. In this way, you gain a broader overview and create the right opportunities for others. And this is exactly what Grow is all about: enabling others to succeed, holding the stirrup and ensuring that employees can grow beyond themselves. (more (in German)). Because only realized potentials point you to further potentials.

Tip 4 (on ENCOURAGE): How to empower employees to help themselves and others.

The big difference between leaders who think they are being coached and leaders who are actually being coached lies in their ability to endure silence. Because coaches are good questioners. Many leaders are overwhelmed with this silence, filling it with empty phrases or redundant information. Employees then “switch off” and wait until superiors show what they would do in their place. So if you want to coach, then you provoke the “pronounced benefit” - the independently developed insight into new ways, solutions, opportunities. Help others with questions instead of tips or instructions. Especially in the home office you run the risk of getting involved yourself, of breaking the silence. Because you are simply not used to saying nothing on the phone or in a video conference.

Tip 5 (on REALIZE): How to consolidate and multiply employees’ successes

In the home office, it is difficult to obtain information (e.g. about a newly developed solution approach at customer X) that is not directly related to virtual meeting topics. The informal exchange is interrupted. However, companies are dependent on sharing such achievements internally and multiplying successes. Talking about successes proactively becomes a necessity, especially in the home office - otherwise the company loses attractive opportunities. Share successes. This also increases employee visibility - a nice counterpoint to distance.

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