Remote work calls into question the role of managers. What should they do about it?


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Before the switch to remote and hybrid work caused by the pandemic, the role of managers was largely confined to office walls. But their raison d’être is called into question in the new virtual world where their presence on site is no longer considered essential.

Hung lee, a UK-based recruiting professional, believes more and more managers are realizing that “telecommuting is not good for them because their role has no purpose without them being in the office” .

In his view, managers who feel threatened by more flexible working arrangements are a big part of the ongoing struggle over whether or not companies should walk away.

Continuing development, Lee — curator, editor and community builder for the industry-leading newsletter Brainfood recruitment– Self-management is the main skill that a person should have in order to be able to work effectively in a remote environment.

“Let’s be honest. A person who needs management won’t survive in a remote-only business. They’ll move into an office business.

Hung Lee, curator, editor of the Recruiting Brainfood newsletter and CEO of (Image: Supplied)

So a manager at a remote company should ask themselves what contribution they make in their traditional role if their team is already self-managed, Lee said, adding that he felt they didn’t have much to offer in a business. such frame.

Managers who do not accept this reality, according to him, end up doing what many managers do now: constantly monitoring staff.

“The only people who like meetings are the managers. This is why the number of Zoom calls has massively increased and people are complaining about unnecessary meetings, ”he said, lamenting the waste of time and energy such an attitude causes.

In today’s digital age where the old presenteeism management style fades, Lee argues that managers should face the fact that the output is primarily digital and can be tracked effectively using technology.

Even employee sentiment can now be monitored with modern software, and many meetings can be replaced with a recorded file, he said, noting that the opportunities are endless when it comes to making work better. efficient and enjoyable after the transition to remote work.

Management will end up becoming a lot more like “coaching, creative development and mentoring” rather than “a layer above the people”.


Hung Lee, Curator, Editor and Community Builder for the Recruiting Brainfood newsletter

Reinvent management

Asked about his advice to managers of distant companies whose roles are called into question, the editor of Brainfood recruitment says they can take two different paths.

The first option is to go directly to an on-site company dedicated to the offices, he said, adding that it was quite “good” and “understandable” that some companies decided not to reduce the cost. imprint of their offices.

“Another thing managers can do is re-imagine how their function works. I think management is going to end up being a lot more of coaching, creative development and mentoring to improve performance of individuals.

And it will be an “interesting” development to watch as it suddenly opens up the field of management for different types of people with different skill sets required in a remote workspace, he added.

The traditional scale of the company is evolving and management is no longer “a layer above people,” said Lee, who is also the co-founder and CEO of the award-winning online recruiting platform.

“I think companies that are light with management and don’t have a huge amount of that level are going to be the fastest and most nimble,” he noted, stressing that a “big revolution” is. ongoing that will transform the world of work forever.


Read more: “Hybrid workplaces to see a powerful generational and sexual division”


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