From improved productivity to fewer interruptions and a better work-life balance, remote work that began with a pandemic scramble looks like it is here to stay. Employers and employees alike appreciate the flexibility and convenience of working from anywhere, and cloud technology has made it possible, and even easy, to collaborate with a remote team.
Many companies are implementing permanent hybrid or remote work settings, recognizing that the conditions initiated due to pandemic shutdowns have introduced some measurable benefits.
But there are some elements about in-person work that are hard to duplicate in a remote setting. For instance, the casual banter that happens in the breakroom or the body language read in a meeting all contribute to successful collaboration within teams.
Here are four ways you can improve collaboration in your remote work team:
Schedule the Small Talk: Productivity and efficiency are great qualities in a team – but elevate them too much, and you’ll have a team of robotic interactions. Intentionally schedule five to ten minutes of non-business visiting into your meetings, or plan for a mid-meeting coffee break that allows your team to connect. These kinds of interactions can feel counterproductive at first, but when you consider that they build trust, loyalty, and engagement in a team, you will discover that they are the most critical part of your meeting.
Invest in Collaboration Technology: Streamline your technology so that even if it’s necessary to utilize multiple systems, they are all integrated and allow your employees to find what they need quickly. Ideally, you implement a centralized hub where sharing files and knowledge speeds up conversation and decision-making in your team. Since the pandemic, the availability of advanced collaboration, project management, and file-sharing has only improved.
Develop Clear Goals: The use of SMART goals (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound) for each project and task helps your team know exactly what is expected, allowing them to become more invested in the project. Using clearly-defined goals allows your remote work team to develop trust and align activities for better results. Don’t just announce your goals; involve your team in the development of them and the steps necessary for completion in order to increase buy-in.
Celebrate Successful Collaboration: When your remote team or a particular member of that team has achieved completion on a goal, be sure to recognize it. Remote work can be isolating, and it’s easy for employees to wonder whether their contribution is valuable to the company. By recognizing employee contributions, you build trust among your team members because even if they are witnessing the recognition of a teammate, they know they will be recognized for a job well done.
Is your company adjusting to a new permanently hybrid or remote work environment? Contact us at ITBroker.com. We can help you assess your needs and then identify the best collaboration technology to equip your team for success.