In response to the unforeseen situation, the world is going through right now, a lot of companies have moved to remote work. The time is not waiting for you to be ready. There’s no surprise that the world gets more digitalized day by day and wants you to keep up with its rhythm. What are the benefits of remote work? How can we create the conditions to make productive remote work possible? How can we stay connected and engaged?
What is a genuine indicator of productivity, time, or task accomplishment? There’s a myth going all around that you pay the cost for the flexibility in the form of efficiency. However, the truth is that remote working allows both managers and specialists to choose their measure of effectiveness. If you are a project manager, making task-based employee tracking your goal will not only solve a low-productivity issue it will also increase productivity.
In the era of social distancing, it is hard to believe that team spirit is difficult to manage remotely. Even those who agree with the previous statement about productivity struggle to believe that remote mode can also help to develop relationships. Social media platforms and a plethora of online communication tools, if used wisely, help teams to build trust and improve dynamics effectively.
Do not be deceived by the “millennials know all about the technology” cliche. Despite growing up in a digitalized environment, millennials still have gaps in applying their knowledge at the workplace. Digital natives are like native speakers. Because they grew up in a particular country, they are not professional linguists, and if someone has “digital lifestyle skills,” he’s not a digital expert.
Get in touch with your team and ask if they have a good internet connection, hardware (laptops, computers or other technology required for the task implementation) and software (tools like google drive, online meeting tools like Zoom, Slack, Skype, and Google Hangouts) to start working.
If your team has never worked remotely before, do a test to see if your staff is ready to handle meetings via video and communicate with each other efficiently. Use short calls to make communication faster. Late in the day, gather feedback and make retrospective. Ask your team members if there’s something that slows the working process down or makes it uncomfortable, and if yes, fix it.
Setting expectations will be beneficial. Decide how many meetings you need and what communication channels you are going to use. Using video chats is much better because it allows you to understand emotions deeply, and it decreases the feeling of loneliness or isolation of employees. Employees and managers should also agree on the expectations of which hours team members are usually accessible. For example, let your employees know beforehand if you want them to be available between the hours of 9 am and 6 pm.
How do you achieve productivity?
Set up your productivity measure metrics: time or outcome?
Whether you track hours or goals, we recommend using tracking tools like Jira or Trello and be more goal-oriented. By focusing on goals instead of clinging to the traditional structure, a lot of professionals feel comfortable dedicating more hours to work. Prioritizing the outcome, managers will receive high productivity. Managers should also make responsibilities and demands crystal clear regarding the tasks that they measure.
You, as a manager, should allow your team members to be flexible and choose how they want to engage. For this approach to be effective, it is required to fabricate working environments and set up expectations that provide an opportunity for workers to feel enabled to regulate schedules and time limits as needed.
For some people working remotely is a dream come true for others; it’s a battle for survival in isolation. You must ask your team how things are going and if someone needs any help. Being accountable to each other helps to remove feelings of loneliness and also know if the goals are accomplished.
Communication is a vital thing to consider for improving productivity in virtual work environments, and you have to make the communication process simple. With a remote team, you need to regularly engage remote teams, schedule video calls, and check out emails regularly. Make the most of Zoom or Skype. It will simplify the whole process and allow your team to communicate as much as possible.
Companies must rethink motivation. Being less motivated by money, employees are looking for appreciation, trust, and positive team spirit. The key is to discover the appropriate incentives for the employee. This presupposes building a culture of flexibility and confidence, allowing your team to control their professional boundaries to enhance commitment.
What you should do now:
Trust your team.
Foster close relationships, help, and support them.
Create a team spirit by using appropriate motivation triggers.
Workplaces of the future will give rise to flexible and outsourced services. If you are ready to get the ball rolling, follow these principles, and you’ll be successful in the era of social distancing. And if in the near future everyone prefers collaborative spaces over traditional company office you’ll be of high alert having experience of managing remote teams!