No matter where you turn, there is some annoying after-effect of Covid-19 to exasperate us.
It is permeated into all we do, personal and business. But as humans, we must learn to adapt and hope that all this goes away soon.
One of the aspects of all the turmoil is trying to work as a team when remote working is the only option. You used to work together in a room and feed off each other having the synergy to create great things. To learn how to possibly do that while experiencing tens or hundreds of miles apart from dislocation is what we strive for here. Having enough self-motivation to manage yourself is challenging alone and now to add to the task, you are remotely managing a team can be daunting.
Even before Covid-19 came along, there has been a 140% increase in working from home since 2005, so remote working had made its way into the business landscape already. There are plenty of examples and lessons already experienced on this topic. And feeling gratitude for the fact that you still have a job to ‘go-to’ is a lot more than a lot of people around us can state.
One of the most important things is to lead by example and be there for your team. Of course, there will be times when you cannot be available, but communication goes a long way. Along with presence and communication would be organization. Again, leading by example.
Having a clean and easy way to communicate is paramount. Some type of video chat is a great idea because texting or emails loses the human touch you would need for your teams’ interaction. But all types of communication should be encouraged.
Nothing can be as frustrating for a remote worker as not having access to the same tools he or she had at the office on their computer. As the people from www.cirrusinsight.com/ explained, there are technological easy to use instruments to assist everyone on your team to do their remote world best. This is the way for your team to all collaborate and see everything in real-time.
Because you are not with your team in the same room where you can see them interacting (or not) and completing their assignments, checking in with them is mandatory, but you should be flexible. There should not be a required 10 am video check-in but one every three or four hours within a half-hour window possibly. That would of course depend entirely on how many people you actually have on your team.
If you do have a rather large team or the work that is done needs more hand-holding, consider teaming two or three people up to collaborate on answering a question themselves before they come to you with it. That could lessen the number of video inquiries or emails you get in a day and allow you to get some of your own work done.
Once a week or so, have everyone have lunch together or maybe a coffee chat in the morning in a video chat and see how that fuels things. Are they chatting with each other and cutting up? Be transparent with them so that everyone feels like they are on the same level at these meals.
This may also hinder another issue your worker may have which is loneliness and isolation. Encourage working from somewhere other than a home once in a while. Even make working outside of the home some type of a rewarding experience for them. Tell them they can take an hour off at the end of their workday if they are working remotely from their usual remote location.
Since they don’t work from the office, schwag – which is products like printed t-shirts or hats and such – sent to a remote employee can be a big deal. Usually, this is for promotional purposes, but schwag can be used for team building for remote workers as well. It shows their manager and company thought well enough of them to send them something. Anything. You can even go the extra mile and send schwag for their whole family.
Once you have a team motivated to communicate clearly with each other and get the job done no matter how much real estate is between them, you have succeeded. Which is probably about the same time all this Covid-19 stuff will be behind us. We can only hope.