Communication and Collaboration Tips for a Successful Remote Workforce
02.16.21 | Operations Chat
With many working remotely for nearly a year now, some business teams continue to struggle with how to keep communication, collaboration, and comradery alive and well, when physically separated from their team. Recognizing it can be a challenge to replace side-by-side working, impromptu meetings, and lunchtime conversations, a manager can take steps to preserve and even enhance that team spirit, by keeping everyone connected regularly. Here are a few tips!
Team Meetings (but don’t forget the one-on-ones!)
It’s important to get your team(s) together on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, with a Video Call, so that everyone can connect. Whether it’s to discuss workload or process, or even just to socialize, Video Calls can keep comradery and morale strong. This may also be important for one’s mental wellness, since many of us are home all day (possibly feeling alone and isolated). A solid team relationship fosters trust, especially when the team is in the midst of busy times and relies on one another to get work done and properly provide support and coverage for each other.
Video Calls vs. Emails/Messaging
Sure, a phone call or Teams text chat may help resolve a quick matter, but for any conversations that could be lengthy or strategically important, I recommend Video Calls. Seeing someone’s expressions and personality makes for a much healthier and meaningful interaction. In general, emails and texts can feel distant, and can often be misinterpreted when they lack personality, energy and emphasis. Also, an email conversation can sometimes go back and forth over the course of hours, or possibly days! It can even be a cause of extra stress and frustration, when you are waiting “too long” for a response. Cut back on causing Email Overload; instead, have a Video Call to resolve the topic with just one conversation.
Training & Sharing Screens
Another benefit to using Video Calls is for training sessions. Leveraging this technology in these situations provides the option to utilize the Share Screen feature, which can mimic an in-person experience. You can even share control of the computer/presentation with other users, which makes it easier to work together and problem-solve. Screen sharing gives you the advantage of showing charts, PowerPoints, and other visuals to all attendees, which encourages collaboration and satisfies those that thrive on visual learning.
Pre-COVID, organizations may have already implemented teleworking into their operation, either with out-of-state employees, or outsourcing to other countries. However, the pandemic pushed most into a fully remote-work model, which has its advantages and disadvantages. So I hope these tips will help you and your team better navigate the channels of communication and collaboration as you and your organization continue to strive to achieve your strategic objectives, in spite of the pandemic.
Jason B. Lloyd, Chief Administrative Officer at Berdon, has more than 25 years of experience in administrative roles of increasing responsibility and complexity. A highly skilled administrative leader, Jason specializes in team building and mentoring, vendor relations and cost reduction strategies, and administrative best practices, while exhibiting a customer service and quality assurance mindset.