As a manager or a team leader, it’s your job to maintain a good atmosphere in your office. However, if you’re working with a remote team, things aren’t as simple. Since members of a remote team can be scattered all over the world, different time zones and physical distances make it challenging to maintain relationships with your employees. But why staying in touch with your remote team is so important?
Besides making your job more enjoyable, good work relationships also increase productivity and work engagement, which is essential for a successful business. Since maintaining long-distance relationships is difficult, here are a couple of tips that can help you improve the connection and communication with a remote team.
If you want to maintain a relationship with someone, whether it’s professional, friendship, love, or other, you need to communicate daily. Open and honest communication is fundamental for all types of relationships. However, if your team is physically far apart, staying in touch can be challenging. So, what can you do?
Besides texting or calling your employees daily, ensure you genuinely care about them. Introduce some benefits for remote employees that will show them that you truly care about their wellbeing. Employees who feel like they are valued in the company tend to work harder and generally achieve better results. So, send that email, give them a call or simply create a group chat where you can all stay in touch!
Switch to Video
In the last two years, video calls became extremely popular due to covid-19. People all over the world were asked to keep a physical distance from each other. This type of distance caused critical business communication setbacks. Therefore, they implemented video chat in their daily communication. To maintain good relationships with your online employees, you can do the same!
By delegating tasks and communicating with employees via video, you can see their true reactions and how they are feeling. It can help you detect signs of burnout, as well as other symptoms and mental health issues that go hand in hand with remote work.
Focus on Onboarding
Starting a new job can be stressful enough. However, if the team you’re joining is a remote one, stress can be significantly increased. Therefore, you need to pay special attention to the onboarding process of new members. Since relationships are built from the first contact onward, ensure they have the most pleasant first encounter with their new job and role.
Include all team members in the process of introducing a new employee to your online team. Be available for the new hire and check in on them at least every other day. For easier onboarding, pick a mentor for new employees who will help them understand tasks and their roles faster. That’s how you’ll build a solid relationship right from the start.
In most companies, feedback is the most valuable piece of information you can get. Dynamic workplaces, busy managers, and a huge load of work minimize the chance of getting an evaluation and comment on time. This may result in one mistake after another, which can seriously affect the company and its image. So, encourage the feedback culture. But how can you do it with your remote team?
Providing remote employees with feedback can be bothersome for some managers as they need to type it out every time. However, not providing adequate or enough feedback information can be more damaging and time-consuming than taking half an hour for one on one meeting. So, consider providing your team with feedback at least once a month, so they know if they are on the right track with their tasks.
Invest in Tools
Communication tools are essential, especially if you manage a remote team. Not everyone will check their emails frequently, which will negatively influence your work relationships. Even though you may think that tools are unnecessary or expensive, it’s an investment that pays off almost immediately.
By introducing tools to your daily communication, you’re not only building relationships but increasing engagement as well! Such tools will also help you keep your team informed, as well as boost employee communication and job satisfaction. They will make reaching out easier, which will also help you maintain relationships inside and outside of your workplace.
Online Team Building Activities
Who says you can’t have fun even if you’re miles apart? Contrary to the popular belief, team building doesn’t only include outdoor activities and corporate training. You can create a strong bond in the virtual world as well! What are some team-building ideas that can help you boost employee satisfaction and strengthen relationships?
Instead of regular video conference calls, suggest online games that can help your team have fun, as well as chat. Additionally, you can organize online quiz nights where you’ll offer special rewards for the winners or create digital escape rooms for your team. It’s a great way of staying connected, as well as building stronger bonds with teammates.
Remote work has brought employees a lot of benefits. However, one of the main downsides is decreased social contact with other people. That’s why managers need to come up with various ways of staying in contact with employees who are working remotely. Hopefully, these tips will help you maintain and build relationships with your online teams!