30 Aug 6 Best Practices For Remote Team Management
One effect of the global pandemic, aside from the deadly COVID-19 virus, was the shift to remote work that many businesses went through.
Many businesses quickly transitioned to a wholly remote work environment throughout the pandemic. Due to this and the rise of the gig economy, many managers now interact with their team members remotely.
The transition proved challenging for some businesses, and it’s common for managers to feel like they’re still learning about and adjusting to managing remote teams.
Business owners who are used to measuring productivity based on labor visibility may find it difficult to manage remote employees. Employees may experience initial confusion when they make adjustments to significant changes.
However, being skilled at managing these people is becoming increasingly important and calls for mental and procedural changes, especially for individuals accustomed to physically working in a team.
Despite the apparent difficulties, recent months have shown many digital businesses that it is possible to maintain optimum performance if managers use the proper leadership methods.
These work from home survey questions have made it possible for you to learn more about the aspects of remote work that seem foreign to you.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, it’s time to pull up a chair because you’re about to learn the challenges of working remotely and the best practices you can use to manage a remote team.
Let’s dive in!
The challenges of managing a remote team
Managing remote teams presents a particular series of problems that require distinct answers. This new structure brings a new set of issues for managers who are used to the conventional workplace.
Managers must first grasp the variables that can make working remotely particularly hard. If they start working remotely, high-performing individuals may see a reduction in job performance and engagement, especially if they haven’t had any training or preparation.
In a few significant areas, remote work differs significantly from conventional (on-site) work. Employees who work from home are separate from their managers in this situation.
Even while working from home has many significant advantages, there are some difficulties as well:
Distractions are common in remote workplaces and can reduce an employee’s overall efficiency. When you measure an employee’s productivity in an office setting, you can find that certain remote workers are less productive. Monitoring employee productivity is one of the most challenging aspects of managing remote teams.
Low level of trust
The lack of trust in a remote work team is a massive setback to your role as a manager. Unfortunately, many managers do not know how to approach this issue.
Many managers lack confidence in their abilities to lead remotely, have unfavorable opinions of this work method, and mistrust their employees.
Breach in Communication
Working with remote teams requires effective communication. It’s crucial to get feedback from each team member and to be aware of what each one is doing. However, open communication isn’t always easy to foster when teams operate remotely.
The team must always know what the other members are working on. When the entire team works remotely, it is easy to lose track of this. Teams that work remotely cannot function without poor communication among the members.
Enforcing Company Culture
It takes time to develop a company’s culture, including selecting the best candidates, encouraging open communication, and spreading that culture throughout the organization.
Organizational culture can occasionally emerge in a workplace without any effort from the owner or manager. For remote teams, this is not the case.
It will require more focused work to develop in a remote team than in an office, regardless of whether you want to create a team recognized for being fun and lively or professional company culture.
What are the benefits of having a remote workforce?
Despite the challenges mentioned above, having a remote team has many perks.
Utilizing the many advantages of a remote workforce is often a critical part of working smarter in today’s fiercely competitive global market.
Working from home has many advantages, arguably even more than working in an office, as the world’s slow but steady shift to remote work has demonstrated. Even more unexpected is the fact that, contrary to popular belief, remote work benefits both businesses and employees equally.
Industries worldwide are gradually moving toward remote work since it allows employees more liberty and contributes to an organization’s overall improvement in profitability.
To find out more about the benefits of a remote workforce for your business, here are a few made just for you:
Improved Work-Life Balance
Employees work in their offices from 9 to 5. To finish their daily tasks, they have occasionally even had to put in extra time. The strict working hours and the overwhelming volume of labour caused an unbalanced relationship between work and personal life.
Thankfully, all of the difficulties disappear with remote work. Employees can endeavor to enhance their performance, health, and ability to strike a healthy work-life balance.
Plenty of Skilled Workers Available
When you’re willing to recruit remote workers, you give your business the chance to add the cream of the crop to your team for much less than you would pay to acquire someone internally.
Many businesses have identified a flexible workforce as a scalable solution that enables them to stay within their budgets during busy and slack periods and prevent overstaffing and layoffs.
Improved Retention of Employees
Remote work is something that businesses should carefully examine as one of their employee benefits because the market for elite talent is always competitive.
Adaptability and providing a remote work alternative are helpful ways to enhance the overall employee experience in light of recent developments.
Remote work independence
One of its biggest benefits is the independence and liberty that remote work affords employees. Employees who work in offices are confined to their desks for eight hours and have limited freedom.
A lack of independence rarely impacts the effectiveness of employees. They have to adhere to a predetermined schedule, which stifles their ingenuity.
Employees who work remotely have greater freedom to perform how they see fit and can set their schedules according to their preferences.
6 Best Practices For Remote Team Management
Having seen the pros and cons of having a remote team to work with, it’s essential to effectively manage this team to get the very best out of it.
Here are the six best practices that will help you manage your remote team with efficiency:
Set up regular check-ins
Although it may seem excessive, this is crucial for teams and managers new to remote working. You can start with getting your employees to clock in everyday at work time.
In addition, successful managers in their remote leadership attempts are drifting toward more regular usage of video conferencing to establish the face-to-face engagement that is currently lacking when email, phone, and texts may have once been sufficient.
Take advantage of modern technology.
Early on, it’s crucial to establish the proper procedures and task platforms. This makes it easier to manage projects with many team members or vendors and task and project status tracking possible, giving leaders confidence that their team is in control of everything.
Slack is one such tool that will benefit any team or company right now. Slack is a sophisticated cloud-based collaboration tool using project management, budgeting, and communication channel features.
Define clear and broad goals
Productivity is always a worry with remote working arrangements because there is no in-person supervision. Although studies have shown that performance is generally unaffected, individual productivity may be.
Setting individual goals or targets and more general team objectives that can help direct individual decision-making may be a better strategy to maintain high productivity.
Promote interpersonal communication
While there are many advantages to working remotely, one of the main disadvantages is the possibility of loneliness or social isolation. The team members’ mental health may be severely affected by this.
Fortunately, you can take on some activities, like promoting social encounters through your preferred communication channels.
Many businesses create dedicated channels where employees can post personal information about their weekend plans, vacations, birthday wishes, etc.
Place more emphasis on results than on activity.
You should be clear about what should be achieved over a specific period to evaluate outputs. Create deadline-driven milestones and set up meetings to check in on progress to prevent tasks from lagging.
But for some tasks, you’ll have to track how long a remote worker spent on them. You can locate a time tracking tool for these tasks.
Have a well-documented set of procedures in place
Be careful not to inform team members of the task’s objective without giving them guidance on how to do it. Allow your staff to develop the standard operating procedures (SOPs) for their job functions to make your life easier.
Although managing remote teams can take some getting used to, there are ways to overcome the new problems that come with it, making it an utterly workable arrangement.
Using the six best practices offered can help you manage a productive team remotely, increase output, and prevent morale, well-being, and social isolation issues.
These methods will assist you as a leader in creating a genuinely united group.
Martins Favour is a creative content writer with over five years of experience writing SEO content for various brands. She finds a home in weaving worlds out of words. Stories are her life and LinkedIn is her favourite tool.