After the chaos of transitioning to Zoom culture—owing to the COVID-19 pandemic—managers have had to shift their expectations.
If you’re a manager, you’ve probably experienced remote managing of teams by now. Scheduling meetings, tracking calendars and keeping everyone in the loop became more challenging than ever.
But there is always a method to the madness. Even managing teams remotely can be done efficiently and effectively. All you need to do is be mindful of a few things to help you make the most of working from home.
How To Manage Teams Remotely
Leading remote teams isn’t a walk in the park, but it’s also not like climbing Mt. Everest. If you can strike a balance between how you manage your employees’ time and yours, you can come up with viable solutions for effective management.
Here’s how to manage remote employees—or teams remotely:
Communication Across Screens
The first challenge is communicating via black screens. Whether it’s your laptop or your smartphone, you have to stay in touch with your employees during office hours. Start with a morning catch-up with your team to set the agenda for the day. This way everyone will be well aware of their tasks without having to confirm repeatedly. Clear communication helps you get your point across the first time. As long as you speak to your team, even if via a screen, you can communicate your expectations as you want.
Make It Fun
Managing remote employees need not be dry and boring. You can help boost morale by employing games and other team-building activities. Quizzes, catch-ups and watercooler evenings (but remote) are fun ways to keep everyone involved. Remote working can be lonely—your employees may lose that sense of belonging that’s present in an office space. Using fun techniques as part of your weekly routine is a great way to bring everyone together.
Regular Updates And Catch Ups
Regular updates are an easy fix to any communication gaps or setbacks. If there’s a pressing matter that needs to be taken care of urgently, you can do so by staying on top of things. You don’t have to wait an entire week for your status update meeting. Regular catch ups will help you streamline team activities to maximize efficiency. Each member can share what they’ve been up to and address queries or concerns.
Adopt Flexible Routines
If every member is working from home, they’ll have different responsibilities. It’s important to adopt a flexible routine (during work hours) for meetings and updates. You have to find the middle ground between organization and flexibility to make sure that everyone is comfortable. Managing a remote workforce will be much smoother if you can make it easy for everyone to adapt before enforcing a schedule.
Be Wary Of Overworking Your Team
Working from home means longer working hours because you don’t have to get up, switch off and catch the train or a cab. You eat, sleep and work in the same space. This is all the more reason that you should be wary of overworking your team. Follow regular working hours so that your employees can switch off once they’re done. This is important not just for their mental and physical health but also to avoid burnout.
Managing teams remotely can be productive if you know where to draw the line. Once everyone gets into a routine, it’s easy to keep track of what’s being done. You can communicate via email or video/audio call, share a calendar for group tasks and hold regular meetings.
Ace Remote Working
Whether it’s in the office or from home, teamwork and collaboration remain essential workplace skills. With Harappa’s Managing Teamwork course, you’ll learn how to lead your teams to success. Drive excellence with remote management techniques like an active feedback channel. You can find ways to keep things just as they were in the office. You can even find ways to optimize your remote work life and use it to your advantage. Turning challenges into opportunities is a critical managerial skill. If you have the determination to explore remote managing of teams, there should be nothing standing in your way!
Explore topics such as the Process of Building a Team, What are Management Skills, Elements of Quality Management and Organizational Development from Harappa Diaries and understand how your workplace functions.
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