5 Tips for Managing a Remote Team

April 17, 2020

5 Tips for Managing a Remote Team

By Caroline Chapin

The global health crisis has changed the way we work, forcing businesses to turn to remote workplaces to keep employees safe. However, this new change doesn’t have to wreak havoc on your management style or hurt your employees. In this blog we’ll offer a few tips to help you weather the storm:

  1. Ongoing communication: communication is critical during a crisis situation, so it’s important to schedule regular morning stand-up calls during the week. Use this time to check in and see how your team members are doing, how things are at home, and check in on their family. There will be plenty of other opportunities to “talk shop”, this is not one of them.
  2. Maintain your team “working” meeting: schedule a weekly or bi-weekly meeting to focus on current team projects and initiatives. Discuss what’s working, what isn’t, who needs help overcoming obstacles, share success stories, and more. Most importantly, the team should leave the meeting feeling supported and aligned on current projects and deliverables.
  3. Video conference calls: leverage video conferencing tools like Zoom or others to maintain some level of face to face contact. For those who are not accustomed to working remotely, this is critical to their success. Otherwise you risk them withdrawing and losing that contact with others.
  4. Virtual Lunch: just because you and your team are working remotely, doesn’t mean you can’t do lunch. Schedule a bi-weekly lunch time and catch up with everyone casually. This is a great way to get to know your team members and put the human element back into what might be a very stressful situation.
  5. Virtual Fun: working remotely can be challenging, so it’s important to find some time to let loose and have some fun. You can choose from a variety of online games, trivia, or even just scheduling a good, old fashioned happy hour will do wonders for team building and morale.

Here’s a bonus tip for you, always remember to ask your team members “How are YOU doing”? It’s not always about work or checking on the status of a project, but asking sincerely how the person is doing during this difficult time. How is their family? How is their pet? What did they do this weekend? Do they need emotional support? Remember, you are their leader, but also an advocate during these difficult times. It’s important your team knows you are there for them, always.

To learn more best practices about WFH, check out our recent webinar. Our team discusses how to make the most of remote working and what you can do to maintain efficiency and productivity.

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