The world is now over two years into the great remote work experiment and the honeymoon period is most definitely over. Remote teams are still very much in their infancy, and the time is ripe for them to start the process of maturing from a child into an adult.
Without a doubt, there are gaps in remote work productivity, and you will find not everyone is using methods to increase efficiency. It’s believed that if we all do our part, remote work will go through its inevitable growing pains, mature into a world-class skill and be on par with other working models as a solution.
At the same time, remote workers themselves may be capable of being considered serious job seekers in a global market – which, unfortunately, has not always been the case, although attitudes surrounding remote work are changing – thankfully.
The Challenge of Working in a Remote Team
The manager of a remote team comes with different challenges than a manager of a traditional office environment. You’re not on hand, you won’t see the effects of your actions in person, and you can often feel powerless.
Whilst it is possible to be successful with remote teams, what really makes a world-class manager is not dictating from afar; instead, it’s about thriving in this environment, and that can only come from investing time in the people in today’s remote workforce.
Here are a few things you can do to improve things for your teams who are working remotely.
Block Out Time for Meetings and Calls
Meetings and calls are inevitable in any company, whether it’s face-to-face or in-person. If you’re lucky enough to have the luxury of no meetings at all, then great for you, but for the rest of us, there’s nothing better than a quick meeting every now and then to keep everyone on the same page.
To increase productivity, however, hold these meetings during working hours that are convenient for everyone, and be sure not to disturb other important meeting times for your team. Also, plan in meetings when they are needed, rather than just for the sake of them.
Give Them A Support Group
Support groups are a great way to increase productivity. When people work remotely, they are often isolated. They will have a greater tendency to turn inward and think, “what’s in it for me?” rather than outward and think, “what can I do to help the rest of the team?”.
With that in mind, never underestimate the power of a mastermind group, especially if you can spend time with your team in person as well as remotely. The synergy of this combination is surprisingly powerful.
Communicate Better with Regular Reminders and Updates
One of the biggest reasons for decreased productivity in remote teams is a lack of communication. To help improve this, set up a series of reminders about things that matter to you, such as:
- Daily stand-ups
- Checking in on tasks
- Team updates
If your team has regular check-ins booked in, they simply won’t miss them. For their part, your team will be grateful for the updates and improve their communication immensely with each other.
Taking regular progress meetings and checking in are also great ways to ensure your team is on track with their plans as a whole group too.