As technologies improve, the desire – and capability to work from home increases. Many companies are opting to have remote teams, whether to keep overhead costs down or to provide an incentive to attract top-notch employees. The problem is, managers are finding that their tried and tested methods for managing a team in an office setting aren’t quite cutting it when applied to a remote work setting. So how can you ensure that your team is performing at its best?
1. Hire the right team.
Different people thrive in different environments, and while we would all love to come to work in our PJs every day, it takes a self-motivated and driven individual to be able to work from home effectively. You see, in a traditional office setting, employees feed off of each other, naturally creating a culture of motivation. At home, the employee must create this motivation themselves.
Want to tap into that social motivation without providing a real-life water cooler at which to meet? Try creating a virtual water cooler by using communication apps such as Google Hangouts, Slack or Facebook Workplace. This gives you a direct line to your remote team to get updates, give encouragement and feedback, provide guidance and more – as well as sharing personal stories or jokes – to build a solid team despite working separately.
3. Clear expectations
When I am managing my team, I do not care where, when or how they complete the work – only that they produce quality work within a certain timeframe. Other managers may require their remote team to be reachable within specific office hours. Outline these expectations from the get-go and make it clear what the consequences are for not adhering to these guidelines.
4. When possible, meet in person.
Depending on your reasons for working remotely, this might be easier said than done. However, the connection you create when meeting someone face to face is unparalleled to any virtual connection you may have made. So it may not be weekly or monthly – but make it a point to meet bi-annually or annually for some team building exercises or a fun retreat – and reap the rewards of a bonded team working towards a common goal.
You see, working from home requires much more than an internet connection – it requires a connected team and a motivated mind. Once you find the perfect combination, the rest is magic.
DISCLAIMER: This article expresses my own ideas and opinions. Any information I have shared are from sources that I believe to be reliable and accurate. I did not receive any financial compensation in writing this post, nor do I own any shares in any company I’ve mentioned. I encourage any reader to do their own diligent research first before making any investment decisions.
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