Thanks to the internet, we can aptly describe the world we live in today as one big global village and with that, comes the concept of remote working teams who are not limited by time or distance. We have come to accept the fact that it is possible to have 6 people from 6 different continents working on a single project and doing it so effectively that it would not make much of a difference if it was done by an in-house team all working from one location.
However, the advent of virtual teams has brought with it the dilemma of not only recruiting the right sort of individuals but getting them to commit fully to the project, a necessary ingredient for attaining productivity and efficiency.
To help you navigate this terrain, here are seven tips we thought we should share with you.
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#1. Workforce – Hire the right people
Hire the right people. Not everyone is up to the task of working alone, as remote workplaces are usually less social than co-located ones. People on remote teams need to be ok with that. For best results, it’s imperative to hire people who are up for this challenge and capable of working independently, but yet in a small team.
#2. Tools – Use the right remote work tools
Tools are important in a remote workplace because they enable you to better organize the team and keep everyone on the same page. A truly effective remote work team will have all of the vital remote work tools: email, a file sharing capacity, an instant messaging platform, screen sharing software, time tracking software, project management software and any tools or resources specific to your industry.
#3. Process – Organize a work plan
One of the most important ingredients in a powerful remote team is process, or how you work. In a virtual team, each person may develop their own processes and procedures that don’t mesh with the way other team members are working. It’s best to use a project management system to keep everyone in touch.
#4. Goals – Articulate project goals and objectives clearly
Help remote workers understand what they are working towards by setting the correct priorities and goals. In a virtual work setting, the importance of having clear project goals and objectives cannot be overstated. These goals should be clearly communicated during meetings, regular check-ins, and performance reviews, too.
#5. Communication – Keep communication lines open
Communication is key when you have a completely remote workforce. You have to get really good at deliberate, structured communication, making sure the team is checking in daily. Set aside time for your one on ones with your remote employees. Also, encouraging team members to keep in touch with each other can be invaluable for additional points of communication. Effective communication will help you build a team that is innovative, efficient, and results-driven.
#6. Trust – Trust is key
Recruiting remote workers you can trust can be a time-consuming process when you’re trying to run a business. And since not everyone can work in a remote environment, it’s important to find people you can trust to complete their tasks, and stay productive when working under their own steam. Hire doers, people you know they will get stuff done.
#7. Team building – Develop a happy and engaged team
Compensate for the fact that you are not bumping into each other by trying to create some social aspects with a remote team. Creating stronger bonds within your company can be as simple as using videos as a way to inspire your team, meeting in person periodically, having and maintaining non-work related communication, or anything that creates a feeling that teamworkers are not working separately but are truly part of a team.