The idea of allowing people to work remotely and transferring businesses online isn’t a new one. However, this concept gained considerable popularity after the Covid-19 breakout and has become the most favorable work model for millions of people worldwide.
Now that you know the remote work model is here to stay, you need to be prepared for this transition, applying efficient practices to keep your remote teams motivated and productive and your business successful.
Running remote teams is similar to running in-office ones because you don’t need to be close to your employees to manage them successfully. However, you need to tackle several challenges to build and run successful remote teams. The key is in fostering open communication and a company culture based on trust.
If you still have some questions about managing remote teams and want to improve your skills and interpersonal relationships, keep reading. Here, you’ll find several tips that’ll help you run a thigh-knit, highly productive remote team that’ll take your business to the next level
Use 1:1 Communication to Talk about Their Needs, Not Work
Most managers are aware of the importance of communication with their remote workers. However, they tend to use one-on-one calls to check work progress, focusing on objectives and expectations. This may put additional pressure on your remote workers already wondering whether their work is recognized.
So, instead of talking about the work-related issues, try to use these calls to discuss your employees’ needs, letting them know that you’ll provide the support necessary for their improvement and growth.
By doing this, you’ll find out if they’re satisfied with the work they’re doing, and what you can do to help them overcome some issues they may struggle with. In this way you’ll show your employees they can count on your support when needed and, what’s more important, you’ll build trustworthy relationships.
Host Meetings Only When Necessary
While keeping open communication channels is crucial for effective remote team management, holding frequent team meetings can be counterproductive. So before you decide to schedule a fourth team meeting this week, ask yourself the following questions:
- Can I convey the message via email or Slack?
- Is this topic so significant that it requires a team meeting?
- Will my team members learn something new in this meeting?
If all your answers are negative, skip the unnecessary meeting that’ll waste your employees’ time and distract them from getting the job done.
On the other hand, when you hold meetings, make sure you don’t have an overwhelming agenda. Stick to the current projects and tasks, focusing on the burning issues that need to be solved so that everything runs smoothly.
Devise a Clear Communication Policy
One of the greatest fears managers have when it comes to remote work models is the fear of miscommunication. And, this fear isn’t an irrational one because many things can get misinterpreted or lost in translation when you can’t communicate with employees in person. Advanced digital platforms can be of invaluable assistance, only if you use them the right way.
To solve this issue, you need to devise a clear communication policy to specify which communication channels are going to be used to discuss significant work-related topics. For example, you can exchange all the important company documents via email, leaving easy-fixable, daily issues for Slack. Also, all work-related communication, except giving personal feedback, should be public. This said, try to avoid expressing your opinion about someone’s performance publicly. Performance evaluation is a sensitive issue and you should leave it for the one-on-one call.
Keep a Close Eye on Workload
The fact is that employees love working remotely for several good reasons. Remote work offers a level of flexibility and independence rarely experienced in the office. People can choose their work hours and make work-related decisions without bosses hovering over their heads.
The negative side of this work model is that many employees fear that their accomplishments may not be visible or recognized, tending to work overtime, neglecting their other needs. This condition may easily lead to burnout which can affect their health and productivity.
If you want to prevent this from happening in your company you need to have an insight into your remote team workload so that you can distribute it accordingly. Click here to find out how advanced workforce analytics software can help you do this. Namely, this digital solution will allow you to see how your employees spend their time at work. By analyzing monitoring data, you’ll be able to see who is overwhelmed with tasks and redistribute their workload to those employees who don’t have much on their plate. By equally distributing workload, you’ll boost your team performance and avoid burnout.
These are some steps you can take to improve your remote team management and adjust to the future of business without sacrificing the core values of your company culture
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