The most recent twelve-plus months have significantly changed how we conduct business and how we collaborate. The recent shift towards remote working is not about to stop either. In fact, there are projections suggesting that by 2025, an estimated 70% of the workforce may be working remotely at least five days a month. It is clear then that the skills, techniques, and technologies required for managing a remote team will also become increasingly important moving forward. Perhaps even mission-critical. Continue reading to learn more about managing a remote team.
As a business owner tackling this paradigm shift head-on, do not forget that you can also get help in other areas important to your organisation. Call Taggart & Partners now, and talk to our business accountants for business growth advice that works. Call (07) 3391 1188 or get in touch online now, to get started.
How Can I Improve Managing a Remote Team?
Effectively managing a remote team will require you to clearly outline responsibilities, expectations, and timeframes. The overall strategy can be distilled to a few key points:
- Track productivity – clearly define scope of everyone’s responsibility.
- Leverage available technology – keep your team connected.
- Do not neglect quality control – focus on outcomes, not just activity.
- Communicate and collaborate – maintain a regular briefing schedule.
Clearly delineate and outline what is expected of each member of your team. Beginning with their active hours and times when they are expected to be available – it is easy to get swept up in private day-to-day affairs while working from home and maintaining team productivity in this scenario, may require setting some boundaries. Make sure to be clear whether you are going to allow for flexibility or if you expect your staff to adhere to regular office hours.
Taking Advantage of Technology
If your staff is already used to working “under a clock” you may already have a solution for tracking the time spent in your company. If not, there are software applications available to help you do just that. You can try solutions such as Harvest, Toggle or Clockify or research your own. Using timesheet software introduces an element of accountability to your team members’ daily work routine. You may also wish to invest into project management software to ensure that everyone clearly knows what task they need to complete and when (or by what deadline). A few good choices here could be Asana, Trello or Monday.com.
Keep in mind that activity does not necessarily equal productivity and ensure that you have quality control processes in place to make sure your staff is not wasting time on “busywork”. Do not let your teams get swept up in simply “clocking the hours” and drive them to focus on the outcomes of their work.
Communication and Collaboration
Communication and collaboration will be even more important to effectively managing a remote team compared to an office setting. First, working from home can be a lonely affair – the lack of office banter and collegiality can negatively impact the mental health of your employees, their motivation levels, and consequently their productivity. The other aspect is the increased need to “keep everyone on the same page” when it comes to tasks, projects and updates. In an office setting, collaborative discussions can be spontaneous, it is possible to overhear information that later becomes relevant. Conversely, when everyone on a team is scattered and working independently, staying in the loop becomes very difficult and may lead to making decisions or carrying out tasks based on incomplete information. It is therefore especially important to ensure that all relevant parties are effectively communicated to in a remote work setting – a daily briefing may provide a good baseline for achieving this.
Interested to Learn More?
There are many other ways in which you can improve and future-proof your business. Call us (07) 3391 1188 or get in touch online now for business growth advice that can help you take your organisation to the next level.