Managing a remote team? Many managers nowadays find themselves managing a team of either full-time or part-time remote employees. This can bring a range of benefits for the business and for staff, but it can also create challenges, and many managers struggle. Managing a team of people is a lot easier when they are together, and you see them every day, but it is difficult when they are out of sight and communication can be limited. With this in mind, this post will offer a few tips for managing a remote team that should help and hopefully allows everyone to enjoy the benefits of remote work.
Outline Rules & Expectations
First, it is down to you to establish what the rules and expectations are for remote work. You need to have clear boundaries and systems in place so that people know what is expected of them and so that you can put trust in your team. This means that you need to communicate what is expected in terms of hours worked, taking time off, and maintaining communication throughout the day. This will keep everyone on the same page and prevent any issues from arising.
Encourage Autonomy & Avoid Micromanaging
It is hard as a manager when you cannot see your team, and it is easy to imagine that they are slacking off or playing hooky. You need to put your trust in your team and give them autonomy to find their own best way of working. The biggest mistake that remote managers make is micromanaging, which can frustrate your team as well as waste your own time. Therefore, you want to avoid micromanaging but also make sure that you are available for support if your team needs it and to schedule regular check-ins with each employee.
Allow Staff To Enjoy The Benefits Of Remote Work
It is also important to let your staff enjoy the benefits of remote work. Many employees actually end up working longer hours and feeling chained to their desks when working remotely, which you want to avoid at all costs, as this can lead to burnout. Instead, allow your team to enjoy the benefits of remote work by allowing them to run errands, go out for lunch, go to the gym, and generally enjoy greater flexibility with their time. This should keep morale high, provide a healthy work-life balance and increase employee engagement.
Learn Everyone’s Preferred Style
You are likely to find that each member of your team has a different style when it comes to remote work. There will be those that like to keep in close contact and will want to video call on a regular basis, while others will prefer to be left to it and to communicate via email. When it comes to remote work, you want your team to find their own best way of working to keep productivity high so that everyone can enjoy this way of working. This is why you need to try and learn everyone’s preferred style and allow them to work in this way.
Check-In & Be Wary Of Mental Health
While there are many benefits to remote work, it is also important to understand that it can cause loneliness and isolation. It can be easy for people to suffer from cabin fever when working remotely, so it is a good idea to check in on a regular basis and to support anyone that is suffering with their mental health. This is also why it is important to encourage people to enjoy the benefit of remote work so that they can get out of the house during the day and socialize. You also need to make it easy for people to get in touch with you if they are having any difficulties or if they have any questions.
Arrange Social Events
Following this, it is also a good idea to arrange regular social events. This is so that your team members can feel united and increase engagement. You can arrange informal video chats, but it is also a good idea to arrange in-person events as well so that people can meet up face-to-face. These events are helpful for keeping morale up, helping people feel like they are a part of a team, and to touch base.
Find A Reliable Intranet Vendor
An intranet is a brilliant way to streamline communication for remote workers and will help everyone to feel engaged and part of a team. An intranet system can make it easy to share information, communicate individually and as a group and keep everyone on the same page. Sharing information can be chaotic when you have a remote team (especially if this is a growing team), but an intranet system will keep everything neat and organized and make it easier for your team to carry out their work. It is key that you find the right intranet vendor for your needs, though, which is why you should always schedule a demo call and find a list of example questions to ask. This will give you an idea of whether or not the system is right for your particular needs.
Keep Up With Tech & Tools
As remote work has become so prevalent in the last few years, it means that there are instantly new tech and tools being developed for remote teams. Therefore, you need to stay current with all of the latest developments so that you can implement the best solutions and equip your team with the best tools for remote work success.
Hopefully, the advice in this post will help you to improve as a remote manager. In turn, this should improve the performance of your team as well as ensure that everyone is able to enjoy the benefits that this way of working can bring. Remote work can benefit all parties, but it also does present unique challenges, and it is important that managers know how they can get the most out of their team and support them.