Team Building Strategy for Your Remote Team
So how do you create an effective, motivated, engaged, and productive remote team if you can't see each other in person at the office every day?
So, completely remote teams are no longer unusual. What is more, in light of the recent pandemic that has come to stay, teleworking is a healthy and smart solution. However, any business model has its own specifics and a remote business is no exception. So how do you create an effective, motivated, engaged, and productive remote team if you can't see each other in person at the office every day? It's not that easy, but it’s still real. Here is the strategy we suggest.
Start by Getting Them to Know Each Other
Obviously, you had many reasons to hire a remote team. And the first thing to do is introduce them to each other. For this, it makes sense to create a dedicated channel in Slack, or a chat in Skype or Telegram so that you can briefly introduce each of the team members, talk about the responsibilities and work tasks of each, plus give your people the first opportunities for collaboration, telling to whom they can contact depending on the specifics of the issue.
A start has already been made. However, practice shows that friendly teams achieve more efficiency. Therefore, your team needs to get to know each other better and it is highly desirable to make friends with each other.
For example, there are a lot of IceBreaker game versions to get to know each other shortly. These engaging games that allow everyone to say a few important words about themselves will quickly help your team members figure out who is who and build friendly bonds.
Find the Communication Channel That Will Be Suitable for Everyone
Believe it or not, Slack and Zoom, despite their popularity, are not the only means of communication. Since your team is completely remote and most likely, time zones can vary significantly, you need to find a communication tool that will be convenient for everyone. It's very easy to do this by creating an anonymous survey in Google Forms. Thus, it will be comfortable for each of the team members to start a conversation and/or ask questions.
Also, don’t forget about other remote task management and team collaboration tools like Trello, DropBox, Evernote, and others. In this case, it would be also nice to ask your employees to pick up tools they like best and make the final decision taking their opinion into account.
Organize General Meetings Once a Week
The general meeting is necessary not only to analyze the results of work but also to unite your team. However, use strategic thinking when organizing meetings. Recently, after everyone jumped online, Zoom conferences have become a great reason to procrastinate and waste working time.
So avoid common dealing with remote staff mistakes when organizing telecommuting meetings. Set clear timelines, outline a clear list of discussion points, and invite only those team members who are competent in the issues you will be discussing.
Also, do not forget about the feedback you can get from the team during the meeting. This will help you better understand your remote workers, facilitate their onboarding experience, and gain first-hand insights to use in your future business strategy development.
During this meeting, your team led by you may analyze the results of the week, share their ideas and suggestions. Also, you may ask each of them some questions like “How do you think, what is the most difficult/easy/engaging/annoying task we have coped with this week?”
Allow Your Team to Stay in Touch and Communicate Freely
As we said, the ideal picture is when your remote team has been able to establish a friendly and mutually supportive relationship while remaining within the work chain. And since they can't communicate in person, you need to empower them to be friends, communicate, and help each other virtually.
For example, you may create a dedicated Slack or Telegram channel that is intended for about-life communication only. So, your team members will be able to chat just like friends. And by the way, you will also find it useful to know what they are talking about in their free time.
Invite Them to Play Online Games
There are a lot of online games for team building, for example, Two Truth and a Lie, Virtual Book Club, Guess a Fact, and others. And this is a great way to escape from the gray everyday life, strengthen team spirit, and improve post-pandemic mood. You can also host an online literary evening, or find out which of you has not lost their high school essay writing skills. For example, your team can compete for the Ratedbystudents of your team members who coped best with an essay writing.
P.S. This engaging game also allows for revealing hidden talents in your team members so make sure to ask them to do something extraordinary as a part of your virtual team-building strategy.
Organize Corporate Events Online
Surely, online corporate events opportunities are slightly limited compared to traditional ones, however, there are always ways out. For example, you may organize a Movie Night or a Fitness Day Online. And by the way, the Ice Breaker games we mentioned above can also be a good idea and a way to integrate your remote employees into the corporate culture.
Just listen to their answers as carefully as possible. Sometimes even the answer to the question “What kind of animal would you like to be? ”Can tell a lot about a person, his essence, hidden potential, skills, and abilities.
It is not so difficult to manage a remote team if you are ready to hear everyone in advance and know how to find a balance of priorities. What's more, it's perfectly possible to build a friendly and highly effective remote team if you are smart about workflow and communication. Use the tips from this article to create your remote team-building strategy today!