Managing a team is not a mean feat, but it gets even more challenging when you lead a remote one. The model has inherent roadblocks for managers, from the absence of face-to-face supervision to lack of access to information, employee distractions at home, and social isolation. You may also encounter additional issues with already existing silos. But the unprecedented success of the WFH proves that it is possible to make the most despite the challenges. While there are no shortcuts to leading and managing a remote team, here are some tips to do it like a pro.
Stay on top of communication
Communication is the cornerstone of remote work as it keeps everyone on the same page despite being at different locations. In fact, you must over-communicate with your people to ensure they know their duties, responsibilities, tasks, deadlines, and desired outcomes. A lack of understanding can slow down projects and cause expensive errors, and these are the last things you want to encounter as a manager.
Schedule daily check-ins
Daily check-ins may initially seem like overkill, but they can be the key to survival for managers and teams working out of the office. Think beyond the conventional ways to connect with your team members. Of course, you can call, text, and email them, but video conferencing is a better idea. It establishes face-to-face interactions and makes people feel genuinely connected.
Every organization houses confidential data of employees, customers, and partners. Whether you have a few dozen records or thousands of data files, protecting them is your responsibility. Security should be your top priority as a manager leading a remote team. Ensure a robust Remote PC Access solution to safeguard confidential files while employees access them from anywhere. Implement stringent cybersecurity policies for remote work and ensure adherence. Also, educate your colleagues about the significance of strong passwords, antivirus protection, and up-to-date software.
Leverage tech tools
Besides implementing relevant security tools and practices, you should consider leveraging reliable tech tools to maximize the productivity and efficiency of your team members. Tools such as Google Hangouts, Zoom, and Microsoft Teams facilitate daily collaboration. Likewise, you can use activity trackers to check employee activities and empower them with productivity tools that help minimize distractions and maximize work performance.
While working from home packs a fair share of joys like freedom and flexibility, it also brings several woes for employees. The distractions at home affect productivity, and physical and emotional isolation takes a toll on their well-being at some point. You can do your bit as a leader by helping them overcome these hindrances. Ensure funding for a separate home office, plan physical and virtual interactions to address isolation, and foster a positive work environment. Respect boundaries and promote a healthy work-life balance to lead successfully.
Managing a remote team can be tricky due to the distance and lack of physical connections. But you can embrace a positive mindset and relevant approach to get the best from your team even as they work from different locations.
The author is an outreach expert at Outreach Monks. She has a flair for writing, and loves covering topics like tech, business, lifestyle, wellness, and more.