Remote working isn’t going anywhere as the Covid-19 continues to increase around the world, but that doesn’t mean every business is ready to dive into the remote work situation. Both managers and employees can find themselves struggling to integrate, but embracing these challenges is the first step in overcoming them.
By implementing a trial-and-test approach to remote team management, businesses can start to unite themselves under common struggles and find ways to achieve their goals despite any learning curves workers may face. Whether your staffs are local or global, these below tips will help you strengthen a remote team and increase efficiency.
Remote Work Orientation
When hiring remotely, it’s important to understand that remote working is still new for some people. Plenty of talented candidates and experienced professionals are available, and they shouldn’t be avoided solely because they haven’t worked remotely before. Rather than narrowing your group, consider implementing a remote orientation program that walks new hires through the company background.
From online video tools setup to communicating with remote team members, an orientation program helps new hires integrate and prevents common pitfalls and miscommunication.
Find Ways to Connect
Establishing genuine relationships with remote employees can be a challenge when everyone is just an online profile. Although workers may not share a physical office space, they still need to develop connections and feel acknowledged and valued as individuals. Businesses should make it a top priority to connect with every worker and routinely check in. Team members should have opportunities to talk and get to know each other through chats, meetings, and even monthly virtual get together. Implementing virtual team-building activities break the ice and help workers feel more connected to each other, no matter where they are in the world.
Create Opportunities to upgrade
A remote hire is still an employee who needs a chance to grow. Any business that works with a remote team should invest in development opportunities that not only lead to cost reduction but also supplement employees’ career. Personal and professional development includes free training for major skills that are in-demand.
By investing in remote employee development, a company demonstrates a commitment to career advancement and helps establish a deeper connection with its remote workers. In addition, integrating new skills into existing jobs gives employees incentive to grow within their company rather than look for greater opportunity elsewhere.
The goal is to give every worker a chance to learn something that is exciting and meaningful to him or her rather than forcing unpaid and unwanted training on an entire team.
Incorporate Remote Culture
Company culture is arguably even more important for remote businesses. When hiring freelancers, cultural values can be incorporated into job postings in order to attract better candidates. Take time to explore deep into your company’s culture. If it’s lacking or even non-existent, start including employees in the discussion and show what matters most to them?
The best company cultures provide a framework that gives employees a sense of comfort and confidence to confront problems and grow from challenges.
Metrics to Track Progress
Metrics such as time tracking, check-ins, and calendars help you stay on top of remote employees’ productivity. In addition to helping guide management to areas that need attention, virtual team metrics also create structure. Rather than relying on abstract responsibilities, employees are given objective goals and established key performance indicators to ensure they’re doing exactly what they need to every day.
In many cases, implementing these metrics can be a team-building task. Host an online meeting and have employees contribute various ways they stay on top of their work. How do they define what needs to be done on any given day? This conversation opens the door into your team’s existing organization and reveals what elements need to be highlighted.
Having employees collaborate immediately reduces mistakes, eliminates redundancies, and streamlines the work process. Although many team members are used to working alone and showing off their work after it’s done, a collaborative approach improves efficiency and provides an opportunity to improve internal communication.
Remote employees can strengthen their relationships and teamwork by working together in real time. This help centralize objectives and ensure everyone is focused on the right tasks. Having daily progress meetings also can help improve productivity by giving employees a chance to ask questions, provide important updates, and communicate ideas.
Handle Different Time Zones
Although your business may have a set schedule, remote workers often live in different time zones. To off-set any communication obstacles this causes, try to arrange meetings at a convenient time for everyone. For larger companies with employees in significantly different time zones, this might mean appointing team leads in each zone and hosting meetings at the best time for them.
Teams also must embrace flexibility and understand that remote work and time zones often impact communication. The most important thing is to be mindful of everyone’s time and try to accommodate. With appropriate communication, time differences don’t have to impact productivity or delay success.