Managing a high-performing remote team can be a difficult task. Without being able to physically meet and monitor their work, managing remote workers can be tricky.
To ensure your team of remote workers is productive and efficient, it’s crucial to approach remote management with a carefully thought-out strategy.
Keep reading to find out the best ways to effectively manage remote workers.
Provide the Correct Tools
Your employees need the right tools to work, and they’ll need access to everything they would have had on their office computers.
Just because they’re working out of their own offices doesn’t mean your employees are responsible for paying for their own tools. If they need video editing software to get the job done correctly, it’s a manager’s job to ensure it’s been paid for and is working properly.
It’s also crucial that your team has access to cloud storage. They should be able to upload all of their work to one universal place. Not only will this be the easiest way for you to manage what they’re working on, it also provides a safe space to store data in case of technological mishaps and improves collaboration.
Promote Regular Communication
One of the biggest reasons remote teams fail is their lack of regular communication. When working remotely, it can be much easier to think you’re working as a solitary individual rather than as a part of a team, which can lead to a lack of accountability, lost productivity, and even resentment.
As the manager of a remote team, you need to provide an online outlet for your employees to converse both with you and with each other. Collaboration is key, and in a virtual environment, you need to create a space for your workers to connect.
Chat rooms like Slack, collaboration tools like Trello and Asana, and video conferencing software like Skype and GoToMeeting can make communication easier and more effective, and these tools can even foster healthier relationships between you and your team.
Be Flexible but Consistent
When considering the perks of working remotely, the flexibility of your workday is one of the biggest. You can wear what you want, work the hours that work best for you, and even cook your own lunch from the comforts of your kitchen.
But this flexibility can have its downsides—if your entire team is only working when they want to, it can be much more difficult to manage their productivity. You want to offer some flexibility, but if things are erratic, your team can suffer.
To best manage this, allow your team to choose the hours they’re online and guaranteed to be available to communicate. It may not be eight hours straight like in your traditional office job, but it will create a shared collaboration window when everyone is available—even if you’re in different time zones.
Check in Regularly
Aside from the casual conversations that you should be having weekly, you should be having more formal one-on-one meetings, too. Working from home can be lonely and isolating, and checking in to discuss your remote workers’ goals and progress can go a long way in making them feel like they’re part of the team.
You may want to discuss topics like their time management, what programs work best for them, how they’re working with other team members, and how they want to progress in the future. Regular check-ins can improve employee morale and give you a better understanding how to manage any concerns in the future.