Managing Remote Teams
Whether you and your team are new to working remotely or you've been remote for years, or somewhere in between, discover the tips and strategies you need.
These are uncertain times that we are working in, as companies continue to work remotely, many managers are running into obstacles they haven't previously faced. You may have had a team that was partly in-office and partly remote before; now most people are at home with kids, pets, significant others all at once. So, how do you manage a remote team to ensure success?
How to Manage a Remote Team:
There are a few things you can do to help you and your employees feel supported and work cohesively even if you're miles apart.
- Put an emphasis on mental health. Even if you had remote employees before, the odds of them also having children and significant others home at the same time were low. When you add in the factor that a global pandemic and recession are also going on, people's stress levels, anxiety levels, and even depression levels could be going through the roof. Check in one-on-one with your employees each week to see how they're feeling. Do they need an afternoon off? A flex schedule? Someone just to vent to? Focus on what your employees need and see how you can support them. Empathy is a vital emotion during this time. You may even be surprised when your employees are more productive when they feel cared for and supported.
- Know everyone's remote work style. Just like when you have in-office employees, everyone works differently and has their own preferred styles of work. Knowing how to manage and communicate with each person is key to maintaining and even increasing engagement.
- Be transparent. No one knows what the future holds. People may be feeling hesitant about returning back to the office and interacting with others. Keep your team in the loop about office plans and see if they want to continue working remote. See if they have any questions or if there's anything you can do put their minds at ease.
- Host virtual team bonding events. With everyone socially distancing, it's easy to forget about your team as a whole. You may only see each other during work meetings and not discuss anything else. Schedule virtual coffee chats and/or happy hours every so often and keep work off-limits.
- Focus on yourself. As a manager it's important to support your team and help them succeed, but you're still only human. You can't really help others if you aren't okay. Take the time to make sure you're adjusting well and mentally healthy.
When it comes to managing a remote team, there are many steps and routes you can take. Just remember to be in constant communication with your team as a whole, and check in with individual employees to see how they're adjusting.