Remote and ‘flexi’ working are quickly growing; many large corporations are abandoning the traditional, strict nine-to-five in favor of a more modern and welfare-first working model.
Still, though, remote working is a long way off being considered the norm—and that may never happen completely—and there are real examples of employers shunning remote workers, people who would otherwise be the perfect candidate on paper, because they don’t have experience in how to effectively manage them.
When push comes to shove, remote working will prevail; the numbers don’t lie. While not every job in the world is suitable for remote working, a huge number are, and it is important for firms to understand and accommodate this in-order to be successful in the modern world.
Why Remote Teams are the Future
Advances in technology have made a huge number of jobs, a number that is always increasing, suitable for remote work. In fact, some tech companies—Organimi included!—are staffed entirely by a remote team.
Lower overhead costs, a broader and truly global talent pool, and the attraction to young workers means that remote teams are an attractive prospect and are undoubtedly the way forward. Additionally, the likes of online collaboration tools, solutions geared towards remote workers and remote teams, the IoT, and major leaps forward in connectivity (5G, for example) have allowed remote teams to collaborate more efficiently and grow in size and frequency.
The idea of remote teams can no longer be swept under the rug; they are real, and they are growing with each passing day.
How to Manage a Remote Team Effectively: Three Simple Tips
Despite all this, we are not recommending that you throw caution to the wind and make your entire workforce remote as of next month—that would be foolish! Rather, we are recommending that you look into the idea of remote working and all the benefits it brings.
For those who decide that it is something worth exploring, there are plenty of things you can do to help make your remote team more than remotely successful.
Ensure Your Processes Are Collaborative
Collaboration forms the core of any remote team. When your employees are not working together in an office, it is easy for them to dive head-first into their work without consideration of their colleagues or without looking for feedback.
For remote team managers, it is important to make collaboration a key theme of all your processes and projects. Hold regular remote meetings, hold your team members to account, make it a requirement that they consult other people before making key decisions, and make sure they are working together, even if only for a few hours per week. Otherwise, certain people, workloads, and projects may suffer as a result.
Use Simple, Current, and Relevant Org Charts
Not having a central office or ‘hub’ to go to every day means that your employees, new hires in particular, may not be familiar with other people who form part of their team or the wider company. When employees cannot put names and roles to faces, or vice-versa, and don’t know of the people working for the company, they are destined for failure.
To aid your remote team in becoming familiar with their colleagues, make sure that you create and make available an org chart of your company’s structure.
By using an org chart, you will be able to map out your entire company structure from C or management-level right down to specific teams and individuals. By referring to the org chart, your employees can see who is who, what each person does, the team they belong to, their contact details, and more.
This will enable your employees to familiarize themselves with their team and the wider company and to prioritize who to contact internally for different queries.
Hold Regular Meetings
Face time is important.
If you want to ensure your remote team is kept on track, that employees build bonds with one another, and see each other as colleagues, face-to-face communication is paramount. Communicating via email and instant messenger all of the time is impersonal and does not lead to the building of working relationships that lead to effective working.
A weekly or even fortnightly video meeting is a great way to get everyone on the same page, break the ice, go over projects and workloads, and build closer working relationships.
It’s a Process of Trial and Error
Your first time managing a remote team isn’t going to be faultless; you will run into problems that are unpredictable or that you had never given thought to.
This is entirely normal. Remember that remote working is relatively new and still emerging… some of the world’s biggest and most successful companies still haven’t yet got a handle on it. By getting in early, though, even with just a small ‘trial’ remote team, you can get ahead of the competition and be ready for when every man and his dog are doing it.
If you like the idea of creating an org chart to aid your remote efforts, why not take a look at Organimi?
Organimi is the go-to tool for organizations that want to create intuitive organizational charts for use in the onboarding process and beyond.
Our cloud-based SaaS platform is easily deployable in companies big and small and can be customized to a high degree to allow for seamless use with or alongside your company’s existing tools, processes, and workflows.
Sign up for Organimi today!