Can workers climb the career ladder working remotely?

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Can workers climb the career ladder working remotely?

Some companies have even started training managers to help remote workers build their career paths. Nationwide Insurance, which permanently moved most of its 25,000 workers to hybrid or full-time work-from-home arrangements at the start of the pandemic, trained managers to facilitate career development for support workers, improve workers’ skills and Creating templates for conversations about interests and connecting them with consultants or company resources to help them reach their goals. Nationwide also made a fully virtual four-week leadership course available to workers at all levels of the organization.

Erin Feaster, Nationwide’s senior vice president of talent and organization effectiveness, said, “We’ve intentionally gone so far as to create experiences so that out of sight doesn’t mean out of mind, which was a big concern for some.”

Software developer HubSpot, based in Massachusetts, trains managers to work with distributed teams, emphasizing interactions that foster team cohesion and build personal relationships, said Katie Burke, the company’s chief public officer. This means being very clear about how the team should work together and encouraging people to talk about interests and pastimes outside of their office.

HubSpot also encourages managers to adopt what Ms. Burke calls “intentional” in their approach to team events. For example, bonding opportunities like virtual happy hours are great, but if they are announced at the last minute, people in different time zones or with caregiving responsibilities often can’t attend.

The hope is that deliberate efforts to engage remote employees may help battle managers’ tendency to favor individual employees. When the Society for Human Resource Management surveyed managers about remote work last year, 42 percent reported that they often overlook remote workers when assigning assignments — not for punitive or intentional reasons, Mr. Taylor said, but Because they just forgot about them.

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Among employees who preferred remote work are women and people of color, who even before the pandemic often reported feeling under-represented and isolated in the workplace. Moving away without proper support can create a vicious cycle that increases feelings of isolation, while also reducing the chances of those workers being pulled over for career and morale-boosting projects.

Sensitive to this unconscious tendency, which organizational psychologists have labeled “proximity bias,” HubSpot Evaluated all of their roles and determined which positions to hold in the office for legitimate business reasons.

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