Remote work is becoming more prominent every day in the United States. As technology improves the amount of people working from home is only expected to grow. Now, as COVID-19 causes many businesses to move to remote work, it seems more relevant than ever to gain a clear understanding of how to manage a remote team.
Many professional people want a job that offers creative opportunities and flexibility. Often, positions that offer opportunities for remote work can create solutions for bringing people together and getting a job done.
Of course, managing a team remotely is not without challenges. Everyone has to learn how to effectively communicate. How do you get people on the same page? Especially when some companies have employees working in different timezones, on different schedules. When you can’t see everyone working at their desks, how do you ensure that work is being completed?
Use these tips to boost your company’s culture and improve the communication of your remote team.
The first thing to do establish expectations. How should time-sensitive information be handled? In case of an emergency who should employees reach out to? Can certain meetings be emails?
Require employees to be available online during a set period of time each day. Weekly meetings should be mandatory, as not only a way to check in with everyone, but to ensure that team members don’t begin to feel isolated. Video conferences should be held at least once a week so that people can see their peers and managers face to face. There are great tech tools, such as Skype, Slack and Zoom, online that help to enhance communication.
It’s important that expectations are established so that people understand that working remotely still consists of rules and requirements.
Take Advantage of Tech Tools
Take advantage of tech tools that are available. There are a plethora of online tools to help manage a remote team. Software services, such as Basecamp and Teamwork can help track activity, enforce deadlines and handle task management. These platforms include built-in calendars and provide users with the ability to comment and talk with teammates all within the same service.
Google Drive and Dropbox allow files to be stored securely in locations that are accessible to everyone. Remote employees can create, store, and share documents, presentations, and spreadsheets. Files can be synced across devices and files can be viewed and updated by anyone on the team, regardless of their location. Collaboration is key to creating a healthy remote team.
This blog was originally published on Thomas Looby’s website.