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How To Empower and Engage Remote Employees This Summer

The sun is out, vaccinations are in full swing, and the Quontic team is working remotely while keeping company culture thriving and employee engagement at an all-time high! Here’s how we’re maintaining employee engagement among our remote team members, even with distractions abound.

Over the past year, we’ve kept our teams engaged (even while working remotely) in a few different ways.

First, with our Q Learning board, we’ve gamified employee engagement. There are all sorts of ways to engage with other teammates, but also challenge ourselves. The way it works is—for every 5 squares you complete, you will get a gift code for something from the Quontic swag store to show off your Quontic pride. Easy and rewarding!

We also started doing department-specific team building exercises and events. At the start of the pandemic, when we pivoted to working and onboarding remotely, we sent out tons of surveys to our employees. One of the results we got from those surveys was the preference for lunchtime events—it’s the best way for people across different time zones to connect. So, in order for our teams to disconnect from work mode, and connect with each other, we’ve been offering our teams a structured chance to engage during lunches. One department did a Guess Who game to get to know each other, another had a Cinco de Mayo lunch. We’ve done trivia and happy hour during work hours so that people are socializing and getting acquainted with each other. Then, we offer a classic Lunch and Learn opportunity, with individual assignments. So we’ll send a team member an UberEats gift card to use while they watch a short Ted Talk on their lunch break. So far, we’ve seen really positive results from these engagement lunches!

Another engagement opportunity that I’m super excited about is The ABA and IBA’s Women’s Virtual Leadership Symposium in July. Our plan is to have a Zoom lunch wrap up after the event. I envision this as something that will allow women within our organization to network between departments. I also see this as a way to get people out of their comfort zones and engage in a real way. It’ll also serve as a test run for future virtual networking and educational opportunities.

Yet another way we’ve been getting our team members involved and out of their comfort zones is by encouraging them to explore different career goals. Currently, we’re trying something on—keeping with Quontic’s Core Values–with two wonderful interns who work remotely. The idea is to have them shadow different employees in different roles. For example, if one of our interns is in the marketing department, up to their neck in data analytics, I want to expose them to emotional IQ and employee engagement and retention. This idea came to me when I was thinking back to when I was an intern who was just starting out —I was so laser focused on my goal, that I didn’t deviate from it at ALL. In some ways, that helped me. But I want to change the narrative for these interns.

Of course, with all this screen time, we have to address Zoom fatigue. I thought it imperative that I should offer large windows of time to be available via Zoom. But because I’ve opened up my availability in this way, I’ve had to reorganize my calendar, set boundaries, and allow myself to unplug—go to the gym, do yoga or pilates, and see friends and family.

To no one’s surprise, because we have THE smartest team, other employees have picked up on these changes and have even implemented similar schedules! Most notably, they have become really cognizant of each others’ time and boundaries. Together, we’re recognizing that we are all reacclimating into society after a pandemic. I’m focusing on encouraging them to be upfront with their managers about how they’re feeling, communicate the emotional temperature, and collaborate to organize for a summer of working remotely.

Looking forward, we’re going to continue doing our informal engagement surveys—those are working well by showing us where we can do better. We’re also looking forward to coaching individuals in leadership roles, growing our culture day to make it bigger and better, and having our new hires learn the Quontic story upfront.

Right now, our employee engagement goal is to create excitement. Culture is our soil, innovation is the seeds.

To have fertile soil, we need to start with an education on where we come from, and set expectations on where we’re going. We need to create a safe space and progressive environment. We need to engage all their senses, even remotely. Employees can get their hands on Quontic swag, taste and smell engagement lunches, visualize how Quontic’s culture has grown, and hear Quontic’s core values around them everyday. That’s the fertile soil that is going to help grow innovation.

So far, we’ve hired over 150 new folks in the past year—all remotely. But we’re always looking for great, innovative people to join our team. If our idea of employee engagement sounds like a culture fit, visit our career page. Review the job openings we have and e-mail [email protected].

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