As more organisations realise the mutual benefits of the remote working model for employers and employees, making sure your remote teams work as efficiently as your office-going teams is the need of the hour.
One of the most common challenges within remote teams is overcoming miscommunication. It is easy to imagine how miscommunication can take place in a distributed team that probably never physically meets.
Effective communication is an initiative that needs to be taken by managers (or employers), and it needs to be done correctly or you’ll end up with a team of unmotivated and isolated individuals.
To avoid such a scenario, try these communication hacks with your remote team:
Use The Right Tools
Just as a great team of talented and committed individuals is necessary for a business to succeed, a communication toolkit comprised of the best communication tools is necessary for a remote team to succeed.
With a variety of options to communicate with their colleagues, your team members will be less likely to feel “out of sight, out of mind”.
Moreover, with specialised collaboration tools such as online interactive whiteboards, you can further enhance the efficiency of collaboration within the team. When your team members communicate effectively while collaborating, the chances of miscommunicating on emails and messages will diminish.
Schedule Regular Virtual Meetings With Individual Team Members
Let’s face it, no matter how much you trust your team, keeping track of progress of work becomes a challenge in a remote working setup. In a traditional office setting, it is much easier to just meet your team member/colleague and ask them about the progress they have made on a certain task.
To overcome the barrier of distance, it is smart to schedule regular “meetings” with each team member. If you find a meeting with every team member a bit too time consuming, you can opt for a weekly work report email which describes their process on the tasks assigned to them.
Create An Availability Calendar
In many cases, individuals from different time zones come together to form remote teams. If your team is an example of this case, an availability calendar can help you eliminate a lot of confusion and possible frustration.
Instead of sitting in front of their screens wondering why their colleague isn’t replying to their messages, your team members will know the best time to reach each other. Check out more watches here: https://www.thewatchcompany.com/
Create An Informal Online Space
Team bonding is just as important for remote teams, as it is important for offline teams that work out of an office. Better team bonding leads to more efficient communication, and this is true for all teams, regardless of their location.
While traditional teams regularly engage in team outings and team building activities to facilitate informal connections within the team, remote teams don’t have this luxury.
This obstacle can be overcome by creating an online space where the team can share non-work-related stuff and just bond. From crazy memes to cute videos of their pets to thought-provoking articles, the group (or space) can be used to make sure your team members are getting to know each other better. Facebook and Whatsapp groups are great for such activities.
Most of the communication challenges associated with remote teams can be overcome with proactive communication. However, when all of your communication is taking place online, it is important to be mindful of your tone. Moreover, the same needs to be reminded to your team members as well.
To overcome the barrier of lost intent in written communication, making use of emojis is a great idea. You can also limit the use of emojis to communication within the team to ensure your team’s communication to the outside world still remains professional.