How to Fit in a Remote Team – What a Founder Says

Entrepreneurs always worry if remote employees would fit into the company culture. We understand the concern, as working remotely is quite different from gathering at an office.

Remote team meeting

It’s easy and natural to blend in when we meet face to face. A new employee comes to your office, meets your staff, and starts interacting within days. They may need a week or a month, but ultimately any new employee fits into your workplace culture soon enough.

Remote work puts a cap on the number of interactions you have. Coming together on video calls for collaborating for a few hours is not enough. You need to spend adequate time with your colleagues to know how to fit in.

As a result, entrepreneurs are extra cautious while hiring remote workers. They can’t be sure if their new candidate will be a good match for a team.

YouTeam has gone remote a long time back and has a few meaningful insights to share. Here is how you can ensure you have the right talent that fits into your work culture.

Get the Right Person

To choose the right person, you should focus on hiring like-minded people who share common interests or traits with your existing team. This will ensure the new employee can adapt quickly and experiences the least barriers to fit in.

How do you ensure you have the right person?

Focus on Personal Values

Your company has its values that guide you in achieving your business objectives. Your employees have to share these values, but you cannot force new team members to accept them. You should employ the right people from the start and recruit those who already have the same views.

Remote working

Skills and qualifications are necessary, but they shouldn’t be your only benchmarks. You can get a new skill or join a course any time you want. But it’s not so easy to change your values that are the result of years of cultivating.

As for us, we have two fundamental values that drive all our activities:

  • We are startup-minded

  • We focus on remote working

Let’s take up each value to show how we find the right people for our culture.

1. All Things Startup

Comparing to traditional business initiatives, startups have to grow quickly and choose their right paths by experimentation. When hiring new people, we look for values and mindsets that match the startup culture. Here is what we expect from our remote employees:

No Fear of Experimentation

As a startup, we love to experiment and try new things. Our candidates should love to explore and test challenging ideas to solve customer pain points.

Experiments are what drives a startup team!

Love what you do

Our team members are eager to challenge new tasks and achieve new goals. We all understand what we do and how we influence our clients with our solutions. It is essential for each of our employees to bring value and make our product even more useful for our customers.

“We are proud to be on the cutting edge of progress — and that our solutions will be the roadmap for those who will follow.” – Yura Riphyak, CEO at YouTeam

A Degree of Responsibility

We grant full freedom to our remote staff to work on their terms. Our team doesn’t need a detailed instruction, and they suggest new ideas by themselves. We look for people who can do a great job without additional managers’ control.

Ready to Make Mistakes

Experimenting with new ideas can lead to failures. Instead of viewing failures as a negative, we try to learn from our mistakes as much as possible. We don’t entertain conservative attitudes where precaution spoils the broth even before cooking.

Our team looks for candidates who are ready to experiment and fail. We can learn and grow and offer more innovative products to our customers.

2. We Do Everything Remotely

We are a remote-first organization that has realized the benefits of remote working a long time back, even before the COVID-19. Our team splits across five locations and three time zones. As a result, our practices and expectations are geared for everything remote. Here are a few of our tips for a remote company:

Meet When We Want

We have physical offices in cities where our employees live. Our team can visit that place to collaborate offline with other team members when needed. They don’t have any fixed hours or requirements to be present in the office, but they have such an opportunity.

Work When We Want

We don’t put any mandate of working fixed hours for our team. Flexible work hours fuel our motivation and get us the same, if not better results.

Our staff can work as much or as little as they want, as long as they ensure the deliverables.

“YouTeam values results, not any particular process.”

– Yura Riphyak, CEO at YouTeam

Document Everything

That is a crucial rule for a remote team – to document and write down all the tasks and processes. All our communication between the teams is written – so you can find all the needed information anytime. Sometimes, we record our Zoom meetings so that anyone can review the speech. A project management software can also help your remote team stay on the same page and understand all the company processes.

Unrestricted Communication

Setting up a seamless and systematic way of communication is necessary to thrive remotely. The distance can let your team members miss out on important messages or processes.

Make it a point to communicate vital information several times to ensure it is read. Respond to your employees as soon as you can to resolve their queries.

It may take a bit of time, but you can set up a systematic communication process without any challenges.

Any candidate who matches the above values and requirements are more than welcome in our team. But to make sure the person is right?

Businsswoman interviews Executive-level job applicant

We Make the Interview Count

Our interview questions are designed to uncover the values and attitudes of our candidates. We ask several questions that include but are not limited to:

  • Why did you quit your previous job?

  • What made you apply for the YouTeam interview? What do you like about us?

  • Why do you think you fit the role you applied for?

  • What are some of the things that make you proud of yourself?

  • Can you tell us about any problem in your life you could not solve to your satisfaction? What did you do?

  • Why did you choose this career?

  • Tell us about a problem you solved successfully to help others?

  • What are some of your favorite books?

  • Who is your role model and why?

Having a ready list of the same questions for each candidate helps to avoid personal bias or prejudices. You should screen every applicant using the same framework, and it will help you choose the team members with the same values and views.

“It’s important to remember the law of recruitment: no hire is better than a bad hire.”

– Yura Riphyak, CEO at YouTeam

Good luck in your hiring process!

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