The global COVID pandemic changed a lot in our day-to-day lives and opened countless discussions about our ways of living. Including the conversation about the way we work every day.
And the biggest shift that happened in a corporate area is, undoubtedly, the wide and fast spread of remote working culture. Huge companies were forced to change quickly and adapt their working processes to a new reality. But, frankly, building a great team on a remote, especially if it is new to you, is not as easy as it seems. Though it is not hopeless!
We gathered the best tips for managers that will help you to create and manage a strong remote team, keep people's productivity high, and make this new remote work lifestyle as normal as it can be for all parties. Let's take a look at these tips, shall we?
Encourage communication and daily meet-ups.
It's simply impossible to manage a remote team without good communication. That's why your first task as a leader is to create a system that will help create bonds and improve communication between employees and managers. This is crucial because they don't see each other face to face every day and can't communicate as usual. You also need to encourage conversations within teams and between employees.
We recommend choosing one or two apps for "official" communication and not restricting any other tools if people find them convenient.
As for basic everyday communication needs, we offer you to use Slack and Zoom. First is an excellent tool to have daily conversations with your coworkers, easily find a coworker you need to message, and have dedicated groups for team discussions.
As for Zoom, we must say that this is a universal conference tool, and we know many companies which swear by it. You don't need to choose Zoom if you want to avoid this brand, but just give it a try.
Use apps and tools
Besides communication tools, there are thousands of great apps on the internet that help people to focus and stay productive.
We offer you to try time-management tools, dashboards, and various cloud storages in your team, to find out what works best for your particular needs.
Also, take a look at calendars, task managers, and other tools that will help your team to be on track of everyone else's work and see their progress. Nothing helps build team spirit more than seeing that not only you but everybody in your team is doing their best to reach your shared goals.
Try to help people adapt to this new remote work reality
Many of us love working remotely, but it can be simply too hard on your nerves if you don't like being at home all day or your house isn't properly equipped for a remote.
Talking to your employees and figuring out their problems is a fantastic way to prevent this situation from happening.
Discuss remote working with all of your workers, find out what bothers them, what distracts them from work at home, and how you can help them make their home office space perfect for their tasks. If you have some budget, you can even spend some money to give people appreciation gifts and help them adapt to these new conditions.
Create educational content to help people keep up-to-date with the industry's news and trends.
As a leader of your remote team, you have many important responsibilities, and one of the most important of them is helping your employees stay on-trend in your industry and be in the loop with everything that happens in your niche.
You can do it in many different ways: create daily emails with news, assemble presentations from time to time when something big is happening, or make topical videos and webinars.
We especially like the last method because visual content is just easier to digest and remember. You can make it as a presentation or a vlog form, but we insist on you adding photos to the video because dry text without any visuals won't work as well.
Encourage people to be accountable for their work
Working remotely can be easy for one person and absolutely unbearable for another one. As a leader, it is your job to make sure that people feel responsible for the work they're doing and have clear expectations about it.
Create a transparent KPI system with clear, understandable goals to give people perspective on what you expect from them. Use project management tools not only for supervising people but also for creating a road map of goals for this week, month, quarter, or even a year.
If someone exceeds your expectation, always appreciate it and tell them they did a great job. Also, make a transparent system of fines and penalties for avoiding working hard (at least as hard as everybody). It should come to both ways: you do good, then you get rewarded; you do bad, then you will get a corresponding penalty.
Work on strengthening the team spirit
So now you have built a great team, the goals are here, the consequences of a bad attitude are clear, now you can have some fun at a team-building event.
It always should be a time for fun if your people work hard. Team buildings inspire your employees to do even better, try harder, and more. You can show them how much it means to you, as a manager, that they are still here, despite the pandemic.
These meetings are needed for people to hang out outside of work, to know each other better, and create an atmosphere of friendship and family in your company. After all, if coworkers are friends, they will stick to your company even when a storm hits it.
Now you know all the secrets that will help you become a leader of the most successful remote team in the world!
We hope you find our tips for managers very helpful, and they will change the way you manage your remote team in a good way. All we can say in the end is good luck!