Running a remote team isn’t always an easy job. Not only can your team members be in different time zones, but they can also have different needs. Because being a remote team member isn’t easy either! Being alone is one of the biggest challenges a remote working team can face. They can often feel isolated, unmotivated, and disengaged from the company they work for.
That’s why it’s so important for you to stay in touch with your team. Staying in touch with your remote team will help keep them motivated and help them to feel part of a team.
But if you’re wondering how to stay in touch and manage your team effectively, you’re not alone. Read on to find out some of the key reasons you need to stay connected, along with some ideas to help you effectively manage your team, no matter where they may be.
Tip #1: Have various methods of communication for staying in touch with your team
Video calls via platforms such as Zoom are one of the most effective ways of staying in touch with your team. But bear in mind many team members may also feel video call fatigued. Managing various pandemic lockdowns and many staff resorting to remote working has led to video calls putting a strain on their mental health. So look to factor this in by adding various communication methods, including email and telephone, and apps such as WhatsApp and Voxer.
Tip #2: Have regular check-ins with your team
Loneliness is a key struggle for many remote team members. So ensure you have regular check-ins with your team. Not only does this give them a chance to air any concerns and ask any questions, but it’s also a great way to see others and remind them that they’re part of a bigger team. Ideally, hold at least one team meeting each week, keep them relatively structured – and send out agendas, so each team member knows what to expect. It’s also always good to record them for members who cannot attend.
Tip #3: Set aside time for one-to-one conversations
You must be attending the team meetings every week. This helps reassure your team that you’re involved and there if they need them. But also set aside time for one-on-one conversations too. Look to implement 15-minute catch-ups, regular feedback and reviews, general chats and even a quick hello. The important thing is to ensure you’re getting to know your team members on a personal level. During these sessions, you must be an active listener – pay attention and don’t get distracted, repeat to clarify your understanding and do what you can to solve any problems and questions they may have.
Tip #4: Give regular feedback
You must be providing honest and frequent feedback to your team. This helps to show that you’re paying attention to the workload your team has, the deadlines they’re working to and recognising their achievements on a team level and as individuals. Look to always find solutions and better ways of working that will help your team perform better and help them feel motivated and inspired.
Tip #5: Have an open-door policy to help stay in touch with your team
You want your team to see you as approachable and considerate. One way you can do this is to have an open-door policy. This is where they can contact you anytime to air any problems, queries, questions or concerns they may have. It’s also a great way to get feedback on how you can improve your management skills too! The important thing to remember is to listen with an open mind, respond to their queries and complaints, and ensure they know you will take action to help wherever you can.
Tip #6: Don’t make it all about work
When you work in an office environment, there are plenty of opportunities to interact and socialise with others, from water cooler banter to social activities and events. It’s not always easy to offer this to remote team workers, but it is possible. Look to encourage group chats by offering virtual lunches, group chats and group coffee breaks. Also, look to hold coworking sessions as they can help boost productivity. And finally, plan social events – don’t make it just about work. Have contests and competitions, get to know you events, quizzes, team-building events and even virtual workouts.
It’s not always easy to manage a remote team, but it’s also just as hard being a remote team worker. So use the tips above to help stay in touch with your team and build some motivation, support and camaraderie to help you all gel together and work better as a team.
And if you’re looking for business management or marketing help, why not get in touch? We’re a dedicated support team here to help you free up your time and grow your business without having to burn yourself out or work all the available hours! So reach out and let’s talk about the best way we can support you and your team – you’ll find our contact information here.