Transitioning from physical office space to a remote team structure can be at first, a little overwhelming. It may feel like everything you’ve built in your processes, communication flow, etc. will need to be reconsidered & remodeled. Therefore, the best way to make this shift happen in a positive mind frame is by acknowledging the umpteen benefits remote work brings along with it. The first very advantage it brings to you & your team is the sense of freedom & comfort such as showing up to the office every day, office distractions, travel time & tiredness. And if you’re a great manager you would know how much the lack of such inconveniences enhances someone’s mood & productivity.
Managing remote teams is all about recognizing the areas that normally keep your team motivated to perform & finding virtual methods to do that.
First & foremost, introduce or filter newer communication channels
With your entire team available virtually, your aim is to figure out selective communication channels that are compatible with your workflow. Finding a group of channels that respectively satisfy various communication needs such as one-to-one conversations, instant chat pings, project collaboration, task-flow, a pre-covid office environment people were physically available at your disposal. The presence & people are available at your discourse gone entirely virtual the first thing you should gather is With all your communication shifting to a virtual platform; it is suggested that the channels are not spread across 2-3 channels. Select a range of channels that encompass instant communication, broader communication (such as email) & tool for task management & collaboration. Streamlining communication traffic is key.
Re-look & refresh your pre-covid processes
In the pre-covid days, your team would be available at your disposal, sitting right around your office corner; making a few of your work-flow processes unneeded. Recognizing the missing processes by relooking at your current ones; will give way to building those processes. Introducing newer processes will ensure your team enjoys the real flexibility remote work brings to the table & make them access material at their own comfort, without the need of coordinating or stalling too much.
Introduce a compatible task-management tool
While you may have been using a task-management tool previously; with the newer task flows & processes included for your team’s remote structure, you may also want to look at department-specific task-management tools that allow more flexibility & has upgraded features that fit the bill. An efficient task-management tool lets you communicate, collaborate & is compatible with multiple third-party extensions you work with.
Update or create newer task systems
Although we’ve covered introducing newer processes & a task-management tool; it is equally important to give a micro view to all kinds of tasks & projects your team undertakes. A thorough breakdown of your tasks makes workflow easier & faster. Pre-defining most of your continuous tasks & projects will give rhythm to your projects & create a feel-good mechanism among your team. It will further help in making more time for other free-flowing projects & increase the creative space for your team.
It’s easy to feel absent especially if you’re working remotely, & lose the sense of belongingness at your workplace. Overcommunicating gives your team a sense of constant activity in the team & keeps the energy high among your team members. But even more importantly, over-communicating helps in reiterating multiple expectation settings & keeps people on the same page continuously. Another reason to over-communicate is to make your transition to remote working feel familiar & lesser overwhelming.
Increase & organize catch-ups
A lot of team bonding & team connectivity naturally took place without effort when working from an office space. With the entire team gone virtual; it is important to break down all kinds of catch-ups & make space for them in your schedule. From one-to-one catch up to team catch-ups, organizing & scheduling both kinds for work & bonding purposes is one of the key needs to manage remote teams.
Recognize them timely
Never skip recognizing your team members, every now & then on your respective team’s or company’s channel. It’s easy to feel gone missing & undervalued when you’re working remotely without the presence of your team members around you.
Don’t forget work-life balance
That’s right. Despite working remotely, it’s easy for team members to fall under the trap of working sporadically & end up feeling exhausted. While everyone should be allowed the flexibility of hours spent at work; it is equally important for you and your team to have fixed slots to keep your respective lives more organized.
Remote working, in general, is a testament to how organized you and your team can get. At first, it may feel a little cluttered & absent; but as long as you’re willing to automate a few things, organize the rest & drive everyone’s presence by being responsive – it comes with a lot of benefits.