With the recent global pandemic spreading like wildfire throughout the globe, many decision-makers like you are already thinking of going remote with their team or planning to hire some new remote team members. But are you familiar with the challenges that come with managing remote workers? Managing a team of remote employees is very different from team members within an office environment. Here are five tips to help you better at managing remote workers.
Establish a team culture
Whether it’s a remote team or not, it is critical to establish a team culture. In order to create this, encourage them to engage with each other more and more. Take ideas from them to enable personal connections to occur within the team and the broader business. This can be as complicated as setting up team rules to coming up with your own team hashtags, such as #mememonday, #virtualcoffeetuesday, #winningwednesday, etc.
Facilitate multiple communication channels
Don’t underestimate the need for frequent communications. Remote workers can’t just stop by for a chat. Schedule times in your day when you are free to chat via messenger, Slack, or other chat options. Equally encourage “blackout” or “do not disturb” time to allow time for the “doing”. Communicate 25% more than you would in an office environment.
Set clear objectives
Always communicate organizational objectives clearly. Define what will bring success for the team. Set detailed timelines and requirements for each stage. Leverage remote employee monitoring applications and workplace engagement tools management tools and ensure team members are productive, motivated, and healthy.
Arrange an annual employee meet
An employee meeting is a period of time in which your remote teams come together for a solid month of intense teamwork and improve productivity. This time allows you to come together and plan upcoming projects in-depth for the next year. Everyone gets the opportunity to input ideas or throw out suggestions. Arranging open dialogue sessions during these events is crucial to their success, as it provides grounds for creative brilliance. Plus, it allows your team to interact face-to-face, forming more concrete employee engagement and bonds.
Make sure your team has access to all the right tools
To ensure positive results from your team, it is crucial for them to have all the necessary tools. This includes quality headsets, having access to shared drives via a secured VPN, access to productivity software and video conference facilities, and reliable internet connectivity.
Schedule regular facetime
Schedule regular face-to-face time for your entire team or on a one-on-one basis. These face-to-face meetings can be easily conducted via video conferencing tools. Also, try to schedule some facetime in person if possible, for training, performance reviews, and building relationships.
Effectively utilizing these tips for managing remote workers could be an investment not only for your team but also for you as a leader. The better you can align the needs and challenges of managing your remote team, the better a manager you’ll become—and the better equipped you’ll be for a time where remote work is quickly becoming the new way of working.
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