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Managing teams remotely for organizations

Managing Teams Remotely

by Charlotte Gurney

Managing teams remotely is something that many organizations have experienced for the first time in 2020. However, it’s a working structure that was already in place across many enterprises that functioned incredibly efficiently. There are significant benefits to managing teams remotely, from being able to work with people all over the world to having more flexibility when it comes to the fallout of the pandemic. There are some simple ways to make this effective.

Track productivity – By tracking attendance, hours worked or whatever measure of productivity works best for your business, this will provide you with clarity on whether contractual requirements are being fulfilled. You’ll also be able to identify areas that need improvement for each individual, allowing a more tailored and effective approach when it comes to training.

Balance consistency with being flexible - Under the current circumstances, a degree of flexibility is essential. However, this has to be balanced with consistent performance and ensuring people are in the right (digital) place at the right time for collaboration to happen.

Create a standardized way of working - If you leave people to their own devices when it comes to the way they work you could end up with multiple processes that don’t integrate well together. Therefore, it makes much more sense to create a standardized way of working that you roll out for all of those who are contributing remotely.

Create informal opportunities for connection - Remote working removes the opportunity to converse while making tea or taking a lunch break; these moments are often where collaboration begins and help employees to feel more engaged. Make sure that your management approach to communication includes opportunities for informal connection so that this type of interaction can continue to happen.

Review regularly - If remote working has been a bit of a shock to the system for your workforce, it may be necessary to review on an ongoing basis. You need to see whether staff are coping with remote working arrangements and where change in the way you’re managing it could be productive.

Avoid overload - Digital overload can easily happen to remote teams if you’re using email, chat and other forms of messaging. Choose your communication channels and stick to them so that people don’t start feeling overwhelmed.

Utilize tech tools - From screen sharing to collaborative editing and project management software, there are lots of tools out there that will make it easier for people to connect remotely and for responsibilities to continue to be shared.

Don’t give up on the business culture - If your staff are not working in an office every day, it’s tempting to give up on continuing to nurture the culture that you’ve already established. However, this is more important than ever when your workforce is isolated and there are lots of ways that you can do it. For example, regularly share your vision for the business, including how this is changing under the current circumstances, and keep your people up to date about how the business is doing. Ask for input and feedback and schedule regular projects and events that anyone can get involved in remotely.

Remote working is here to stay, which is why it’s essential for organizations to be able to modernize their approach to managing their teams.
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