Remote work became a routine for many specialists, requiring new management and team leadership approaches. This is a totally new challenge for any industry.
Leading a remote team requires intense planning, effective communication, and a complete understanding of all expectations. Applying the right strategies helps keep each member motivated & engaged in the process.
Best Tips for Leading a Remote Team
A recent study shows that remote employees are 77% more productive. People accomplish more tasks in shorter timeframes, growing their efficiency and staying focused.
Try applying the following tips in your company’s remote routine to help everyone maintain top-notch work quality and an even faster pace without burnout.
⦁ Prepare a daily plan
Planning your team’s workday is essential to keep a healthy load balance. This helps members organize their activities and regularly switch focus for a minor “reboot.”
Although this might be difficult at first glance, developing time management skills is extremely important for any team. In addition, setting milestones makes even the most challenging task look accomplishable.
Many companies use Jira, Trello, or Microsoft To Do in their planning processes. Such tools visualize tasks and help members speed up reporting. However, you should note that the mentioned apps are only an example. Your team might use other software as well.
⦁ Collaborate via online tools
As we speak of remote work, it is necessary to mention tools that allow online collaborations. Some of these are:
- Google Drive for sharing files, videos, etc.;
- Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides for collaborative editing;
- Miro for brainstorming and planning.
Actually, there are hundreds of tools and services that significantly benefit online workplaces. The point is in knowing which ones solve your challenges most effectively.
Imagine what everything would look like without these tools. You have to edit a Word file sent by your colleague. So you download the file, edit, send it back. Then your colleague does the same. It’s an endless cycle of uploading and downloading. Luckily, there’s no need to do that anymore.
⦁ Conduct regular team meetings
Although some things are better discussed in text, there are many reasons to conduct regular team meetings. Here are some of them:
⦁ Speech interaction builds stronger relationships;
⦁ Discussing complex ideas with multiple variables in speech is much faster;
⦁ Quicker decision making due to brainstorming;
⦁ Better employee engagement.
Most companies currently use Meet or Zoom, although some focus on Skype and Discord.
If you want to conduct an effective meeting, it is highly recommended that you consider the following points:
⦁ Set a clear agenda;
⦁ Inform everyone about the meeting in advance;
⦁ Choose whether the whole team or only several members should attend;
⦁ Encourage your team to share their ideas.
Regular team meetings will constantly improve your team’s communication skills, promote creative ideas & solutions, and also help solve complex issues faster.
We’ve previously discussed the 5 ways to connect with your mobile workforce. These tips will help you enhance communication with your team.
⦁ Build a knowledge base
A detailed knowledge base can simplify the onboarding process for new members and help other employees follow the company’s best practices. Having all the information written in a structured manner will minimize the number of repetitive questions you might have to deal with.
Usually, a knowledge base includes:
⦁ Team rules and standards;
⦁ Frequently asked questions;
⦁ Descriptions of various situations and their solutions;
⦁ Guides for completing different tasks.
In some cases, you might have to record a video guide about using tools like a CRM or CMS. New members will learn much faster with a visual demonstration. That’s why you’ll need to use a desktop recorder to explain everything effectively.
Remember that the bigger your knowledge base, the easier it is to keep high-quality standards in your daily routine.
⦁ Set chat rules
There’s a separate etiquette in online communication. Including your own set of rules in the chat will help you build an effective workspace for everyone.
Consider adding these rules:
⦁ If you’ve read a message, answer it. In case you can’t, at least let the other person know that you’re busy at the moment.
⦁ Send one long message instead of several scattered ones. This contributes toward the simplicity of understanding your idea.
⦁ Avoid using the “Mention All” feature unless it’s a truly urgent matter. Your message might break someone’s focus and ruin their day.
⦁ Do not argue in a text. It is very difficult to interpret text messages from an emotional standpoint, so keep the conflicts for face-to-face conversations.
Once you’ve got these rules applied, watch the communication flow change. The messages will probably become more friendly and convincing. As a result, the team gets a positive environment.
⦁ Practice public praise and private criticism
Recognizing your employees’ achievements in public greatly increases their dedication to the job. People like knowing that their actions are appreciated, so it is always a great idea to show your positive attitude. It’s all psychology.
However, when we speak of criticism, it is best to keep it private. The reason is that you don’t discredit the employee, and you can have a clearer conversation. In addition, public criticism usually triggers a person’s defensive mechanisms, ultimately reducing the possibility of an adequate discussion.
Now that you know how to manage a remote team try applying these best practices in your company. There is one thing each point has in common – a friendly environment. Keeping it up will help your employees remain motivated and engaged in the work process.