Ready to build your distributed team? Follow these 5 tips to build effective remote team.
Remote work is here to stay. More and more workers are demanding flexible work arrangement. Many companies both small and big are beginning to offer work from home options to attract and retain top talents.
It is no longer a question of what is remote work? It’s now a matter of how do we leverage a flexible work policy to boost team productivity?
Organizations are concerned more than ever about building effective, productivity and tight-knitted remote team.
Thankfully, the invention of the internet and the proliferation of virtual office, chat and messaging apps, project management tools, cloud file hosting services, and video and conference call products mean companies can now face the task of building an effect remote team without distractions.
Effective and carefully managed remote team significantly contribute to the profitability of any business. Businesses that use distributed teams experience the following:
- Reduction in the cost of operation
- Increased productivity
- Reduction of employee turnover
But managing an effective remote team can be a challenge, especially if you do not follow these tips outlined below:
So, here’s our 5-step framework to build effective remote team
Step #1: Define the Remote Team’s Purpose
What is the purpose of the remote team? What goals do you aim to accomplish with a distributed workforce?
It is always crucial to establish the purpose of a thing before it is launched. Like a great man once said, “If the purpose of a thing is not known, abuse is inevitable.”
So, you need to, first of all, define the purpose of building a remote team that will take your business to the next level. This will help you to know:
- Who to hire
- What you should look for when searching or interviewing potential candidates
- Which countries to focus on, etc.
Purpose gives clarity on what you want to accomplish while cultivating the culture of productivity in your enterprise.
The purpose is your teams’ north star – it lets everyone know the direction you want them to go and what they should be doing.
Without a crisp-clear, detailed goal you can’t build an effective remote team.
Step #2: Establish Communication Channels
Communication is vital in nearly all facets of life. It may not be too easy since every member of the team is in a different place in different timelines or zones.
However, using a combination of processes and tools can make it possible for you to establish excellent communication.
One of the best and handy means of communication is videoconferencing. It gives room for more connective experiences compared to phone calls as everyone gets to see each other’s faces, observe body languages, etc.
Zoom is an application that has made video conferencing much easier than ever. In this case, you may have to establish a “camera always on” policy.
Another immensely popular collaboration software is Slack, which makes regular communication both efficient and manageable via their mobile as well as desktop apps.
Slack even allows the integration of other complementary software or tools, thus allowing remote teams to maximize communication efficiently.
Other tools you can also include in your remote team communication arsenal:
- Google Drive
Step #3: Prioritize the Team Leader
The first position you should establish when building a remote team is a team leader or project manager.
Such an individual will be in charge of the remote team and see-to their day-to-day activities for maximum productivity.
The team leader will serve as both your ears and eyes in the remote team. His primary purpose is to ensure the remote team works seamlessly and on schedule when it comes to accomplishing identified or assigned objectives.
He reports directly to you at all times.
Step #4: Create Detailed Operational Guidelines
Often, companies wanting to build distributed teams turn to familiar face-to-face management style. They try to implement processes and systems that work best in the traditional office setting, unfortunately, they fail.
When creating operational guidelines for your remote team – be sure to consider the unique situation of your team members.
- Is everyone in the same city or country?
- Are your team members spread across different timezones?
Operational guidelines are documents that highlight a variety of workflows, descriptions, etc. of the frameworks of the organization. It also bears the rules and regulations of your company.
Your operation guidelines must have a section with Frequently Asked Questions, all of which must be duly answered.
If any remote team member has any need for clarification on a particular area, they will be able to seek out the FAQ section for more information.
Step #5: Hire Only Right-fit Talent
Not everyone is suitable for remote work. Some work best in an office setting. Your goal while building a flexible team is to hire only talents that have the aptitude for a remote lifestyle.
Sure, hiring the right candidates can be quite tricky especially with almost everyone wanting to work in a remote position.
However, some of the traits to look out for when building your distributed team include:
- Communications skills – can the individual write in a clear manner? you don’t want someone on your team everyone else will be guessing what they are trying to say.
- Are they independent self-starters? the unique nature of remote work makes it imperative that your team members be self-starters. You want someone on your team that doesn’t need babysitting to get things done.
- Are they passionate about working from home?
- Do they follow instructions and pay attention to details?
Check out this article on Remote.co to read more about what other remote companies say about hiring.
Since your distributed team is likely going to be composed of people from different nationalities and cultural backgrounds; you may want to pay close attention to hiring only individuals with likeable personalities.
Final thoughts on how to build effective remote team
The world has gone digital, and thanks to technology, the way we think about employment and work have drastically changed.
Distributed teams give you the opportunity to hire the best hands to move your organization to a higher level, regardless of their location.
Remote work has also been shown to improve job satisfaction, enhance the quality of life as well as boost the productivity of your team.
So, if you’re sold on the idea of building a remote team and ready to move forward with your team-building effort, we hope these steps highlighted above will make the process easier for you.