When you have representatives who work from home, or work in offices that are remote from their leaders, there are a few things to do differently when coaching over the phone as opposed to coaching in person:
A personal connection can be harder to establish over the phone because we cannot see the emotion that is typically understood by seeing a person’s body language.
Behavior - Smiling and having an energetic vocal delivery will be even more important to communicate presence, interest, and pleasure in speaking/ spending time together.
Energy is harder to convey over the phone than in person.
Behavior - Increase volume slightly, sit close enough to the phone, & sit forward to aid in projecting your voice outward.
Pace is important as it affects a person’s opportunity and comfort to speak up/interject.
Behavior - Pausing slightly after statements, or sections of statements (like after praising strengths for example), allows the other person to chime in, make a comment, ask a question, etc.
Because remote persons cannot see us to read cues, we have to intentionally offer the opportunity to speak.
Behavior 1 - Add more pausing to allow for easier interruption.
Behavior 2 - Directly ask for questions, more frequently than you normally would in a face to face event
Persons may be concerned with who can hear them, and who can hear you.
Behavior - Proactively address this – consider still reserving a room, and asking them to do the same.