Managing remote teams isn’t as easy as managing a team in the same building. But, most of us have had to adapt over the last few months. It’s new territory for so many of us – whether you are a manager or an employee.

Since March, you may have established some clear remote-work policies. Or, maybe you haven’t had time to even think about that yet? Don’t worry. Here’s 3 quick tips to help you when it comes to successfully managing remote teams.

Establish a routine of daily check-ins

A common problem when it comes to remote working is the lack of face to face supervision. As a manager, you may feel that employees are not working as hard at home, but stop and think. Is this just because you can’t physically see them? There’s a simple solution – arranging daily check-ins will work well for you both. Your employee will feel motivated for the day, have a clear set of objectives and you also know what to expect. These calls need to be regular – i.e. daily and predictable – i.e. at the same time each day.

video check in

Remember that you have a team of individuals

Everyone is dealing with woking from home in a different way. When it comes to managing remote teams, it’s important to consider how they are feeling too. It can be harder to identify if someone is struggling when you’re not with them. Make sure that your daily check-ins are not just all the team or just 1-2-1’s. Give each member of your team the chance to voice any concerns or worries confidentially. Remember to check in on them, not just in a work sense, but an emotional sense too.

Use the right communication tool for managing remote teams

There’s a wealth of communication tools to make things easier when managing remote teams. But, be mindful not to use them all at once! Set clear boundaries with your team. Here’s the only 4 you should need –

  • Video calls – great for team meetings. The interaction with colleagues is something that most people are missing when working from home. Remember to try and scheduled in some time in your team meetings for general chit/chat. You may feel that this is time wasted, particularly when you are busy, but you’d be amazed what a short session of ‘office banter’ does for motivation levels. It’s also a great thing if some of your team are feeling lonely – something really important to look out for.
  • Phone calls – great for 1-2-1 meetings. Keep these to a scheduled time and don’t be distracted with other things.
  • Emails – perfect for sharing documents with others or getting feedback. Remember email etiquette though – if you are sent the email, you are expected to reply. If you are CC’d in then it’s just for reference.
  • Instant message – a great way to get an urgent message across. Think of it as skipping the email queue, but only when necessary. And remember to choose an agreed way to instant message. Don’t have some on WhatApp, some on Messenger, some on…. you get the idea.

Need advice?

Not only has managing teams changed, so has recruiting and on-boarding. Video interviews are a necessary part of the recruitment process now. But companies are starting to realise the benefits beyond social distancing. If you would like to find out more, get in touch with one of our expert consultants today.