Remote Working is not a new way of working, but it surely has become an integral part of the ‘new normal’ post the Coronavirus pandemic.
Many industries have adopted remote working as their primary form of employment. Many individuals have accepted remote working as their lifestyle choice. Today organizations are writing unparalleled success stories relying solely on remote teams.
Getting the most out of your team while they are working remotely is a management skill. Many organizations struggle with the challenges of remote working.
If you’ve been under the pressure of extracting the best out of your remote teams, we’re here to help. Here’s your guide to managing remote team members for high performance.
Project Management Tools
Technology is omnipresent. There’s a reason why we have this as our top suggestion for managing remote teams. With task management software and project management tools, you can overcome most of the challenges of remote working.
Project management tools facilitate communication and file sharing among team members. But they also offer a range of advanced features. The features differ from software to software. You should choose software that addresses the problems of project management. For example, SmartSuite.com offers project planning and tracking solutions besides the basic project management features.
Delegation of responsibilities is easy to carry out in a traditional office environment. But with remote teams, it’s a different story altogether. You need to develop clear strategies to overcome this hurdle.
For effective delegation, you must first ascertain the project and its scope. You should have a schedule too and inform the team members about the deadlines. Be clear about your expectations. Tell team members the specific task that needs to be done, and how and when it has to be done. Make sure you assign the right task to the right person, the one who has the skill and expertise to finish it. Always welcome feedback from team members to avoid unnecessary delays.
Delegation and feedback can only be effective when the communication channel is foolproof. In the case of remote working, communication challenges are plenty. You need to have more than one communication channel to ensure a smooth flow of instructions and feedback.
For instance, instructions can be shared via email, and real-time queries and discussions on chat or group chat. For meetings, video conferencing is ideal. Leave some room for social and personal interactions as well. Even though members are not interacting physically, effective communication channels build an environment that encourages empathy and team spirit.
In a remote work scenario, team members have the flexibility to choose their workspace. You don’t have any control over the physical work environment, but you can ensure that your members use the right equipment.
Most successful organizations offer equipment to their employees in the office. The same is true for organizations working with high-performing remote teams. Ensure that your team members use the right computer and accessories and unbridled internet access. If your team has to work for long hours, consider providing employees with an ergonomic desk and chair.
Code Of Conduct
To communicate your expectations to the team members, it’s a good practice to have a formal code of conduct. These guidelines may be different from what applies when members come to an office, so you should update any existing code of conduct. Lay down the working standards clearly, giving details of the duties and responsibilities, working hours, dress code, background noise, etc.
Managing team members remotely may not come naturally to you. It is only human to struggle when things are new and challenging. But our tips can help you find your ground in such situations. Remember these golden rules for managing high performance teams:
- Embrace technology like project management tools
- Delegate tasks and assignments to team members
- Use multiple communication channels
- Provide computers, accessories, internet service etc. to team members
- Establish a strict code of conduct