How To Evaluate Employee Performance When More Want To Work From Home

Here’s a question that won’t be easy for some companies, even though I’m confident they will figure it out eventually. If an employee can’t be seen, how do you know they’re working hard, focused on the highest priorities and well on their way to producing positive results for you?

In traditional workplaces, it wasn’t a challenge to know someone was a hard worker if she was always asking to help, always on the phone talking to clients or always on the computer getting things done. You could literally see the work happening. It wasn’t a stretch to assume that the worker was producing results.

It could be a different story, however, if you’re talking about a Software Engineer or some Architects. Can their jobs be done from home? Not necessarily at the beginning of a project. They may need to come into the office to work on the more significant phases of the work, such as the overarching design. Could they work from home to finalize the finer points of the design? Perhaps.

Scott Graham for Unsplash

Don’t be surprised if some companies allow work-from-home but also demand certain sacrifices in the way of money and independence. They may say, “Sure, you can leave this environment and go work in Idaho. We’ll allow it. But you have to take a bit of a pay cut, we have to see your texts and have access to all of your work equipment remotely to see what’s going on. You’ll have a full suite of connectivity with Office and Slack, so we expect you to use it. All of it.”

Talman Advantage #2: We See The Complete Picture Of Who You Are

At Roy Talman & Associates, we don’t just see you as a resume or even a candidate to fill an open job. Instead, we’ll ask to meet you because we want to get to know you on a deeper level – that includes your current skills, your knowledge of certain subjects, your special expertise, your work style and the environments in which you believe you thrive. Compare that to others. But always talk to Talman first.

Are conditions even to that extent going to prevent migration away from Silicon Valley to nearby places such as Arizona, Utah, Idaho or Montana? Venture capitalists may need to be in Silicon Valley, but the greater affordability of real estate is a decisive factor for many others. A mid-level engineer in his mid-40s who can do what he needs to do from home and doesn’t have to be physically around a group of 15 people can be perfectly happy working from another location.

Will his employer be as happy? Rather than trying to force an employee’s hand on location, consider this as an option: Put them to the test. If they truly have the passion and purpose of work to not only be just as productive but perhaps even more so from a remote location, you’ll have yourself a win-win situation. If they falter, you’ll see that too and can adjust accordingly.

Luke Chesser for Unsplash

It’s this scenario where I’m reminded of a famous quote attributed to Warren Buffett:
“Only when the tide goes out, do you discover who’s been swimming naked.”

In other words, if they’ve got what it takes to perform exceptionally well from a remote location, let them prove it to you. Do your part to be clear in your direction, communication and benchmarks for success on a very consistent basis. Once you’ve done that, remote workers just may surprise you with how much better they can help your company reach its goals – even from a greater distance.

Is there any way to cover your bases in advance to get a much better sense of the potential your next hire brings to the table? You may think it’s a tall order, but not if you’re working with Roy Talman & Associates to sufficiently identify not only the candidate’s unique skill set but also the type of workplace culture they desire.

After all, even if they are all about returning to work five days a week, there’s still a long way to go before you can consider them a fit for your culture. Especially since that culture is bound to change to some degree due to the global atmosphere we’re presently operating in. We factor in a variety of aspects to present you with a candidate who has the passion and purpose to succeed while being in alignment with your approach to remote work, a complete office return or a hybrid of the two. Doesn’t it feel better to have more answers than questions in these moments? Our clients certainly think so. That’s why it’s wise to Talk To Talman First.