This is the first in a five part series in an interview with Matt Ronge, CEO, Astropad: an extension of our April 20th webinar hosted by Modern Logic and Lighter Capital.
As life slowly creeps closer to normal, one question is getting buzz: should we return to the office? In a recent poll by Harvard Business School Online, the majority of American workers reported wanting to remain working at home after the pandemic ends. Not all managers agree.
Matt Ronge, CEO from Astropad, led an all-remote team even before COVID-19 began. Now that others are facing tough decisions about what the workplace should look like in 2021 and beyond, he’s sharing this advice.
Recognize the Benefits
Employees want and expect this new way of life. “Even before the pandemic, I was surprised that more people weren’t doing all-remote work. A lot of people really like to work at home. There have been multiple surveys – people will give up pay just to work from home! They like cutting out the commute and being able to structure their day in a different way. People don’t want to sit in traffic and pay for parking. To stay competitive, more companies will have to adopt this.”
Change Your Mindset
Change your mindset about what accountability means. “Be less about ‘butts in seats’. I’ve heard of applications that monitor whether people are working, but that’s not going to bring the best work out of your employees. This is a new way of working, but it’s also a new way of holding people accountable.”
Focus On Outputs
Measure people on their output to maximize performance. “The best people respond well to this output-focused mindset! They don’t want to play a game where they log hours sitting at their desk. They want to be rewarded for doing quality work. Your best performers will value an output-focused mode.”
Adopt New Hiring Tools
Expect more applicants and know how to handle them. “Even as a small company, because we’re remote, we’ll get hundreds of applicants. We find ourselves implementing more tests or assignments, like giving people specific directions to follow through. That weeds out people who are looking for any job, versus people who are interested in our job. We also use questionnaires rather than just a resume.”
Embrace The Possibilities
Build great positions and your candidates will come. “When you hire for a unique position, it’s easier to hire from a huge pool outside your headquarters. It vastly opens things up. We’ve tried to hire people just near our headquarters versus anywhere, and the difference is pretty stark.”
This article is Part 1 in our Thought Leadership series with Matt Ronge from Astropad. Stay tuned for his thoughts on scaling!