10 Tips on Training and Managing Remote Teams
Are you a business owner or an HR manager considering hiring remote staff for your organisation? You might be worried about integrations and employees’ performance. What approach would lead to better training and managing remote teams?
What would make your team feel more involved, appreciated, and productive? How do you foster teamwork, collaboration and meet team members’ needs while working remotely?
Don’t worry; we have your guide here. Read these 10 tips recommended for you.
1. Clear Communication Is the Foundation of Your Team
Building a work culture based on trust, honesty, respect, and clear communication is the key to success when training and managing remote teams. When hiring, it’s crucial that the person feels comfortable communicating with you, their trainer, and the managers.
- Know what you expect them to achieve daily
- Understand their role in the team or company
- Are aware of the skills and abilities necessary for the job
- Have access to training materials and resources
Make sure it’s easy to communicate with you, for example, using special software, apps, or phone systems. Taking responsibility for training the remote workforce is up to you as a manager.
2. Create a Training Plan
The first step is to create a training plan which allows you to understand how much time and effort it takes your employees to learn new things. Also, try not to overwhelm them with too much information at once.
Instead, develop a detailed plan, communicate it to your team members, and offer relevant course materials.
3. Monitor Remote Employees’ Performance
You have probably spent a lot of money training your remote staff to perform their duties efficiently. But how much do you know about their performance? Do you know the habits and practices they use in isolation?
You don’t need to watch over your remote team members every second of the day, but you should set some time to check out what they do and how you can enable them to stay productive.
You also have to listen to their feedback and suggestions. Be responsive and let them know you’ve received the information, even if you cannot immediately answer.
4. Learn How to Motivate Your Remote Team Members
Motivating virtual workers is a tricky part of training and managing a remote team. Remember that most employees need to receive feedback to feel appreciated and encouraged to keep on their professional development track with you.
Find out more about how they work, what problems they encounter at work, and what you can do to support them.
5. Do Not Pressure the Team
Look for ways to make your virtual employees feel their job is valuable and contributes to success. Be flexible with work conditions, time frames, and location if necessary.
Research shows that remote teams are more productive when managers don’t try too hard to control their subordinates’ every move.
6. Build Lasting Connections
Be available, approachable, and responsive. Understand that the virtual workforce is not the same as the full-time onsite staff. Remote workers have specific needs and issues such as lack of inclusion and loneliness.
You have to take care of them and be aware of what is going on with your team members. Hold periodic meetings, interact with them individually, and uphold the team spirit.
Talking about professional interests improves team members’ motivation, engagement, and connection. What brings you together? What shared interests do you have?
What do you like doing in your free time? You might be surprised, but team-building activities such as cooking, sports, and hobbies help virtual workers feel more trusted and closer to the company.
7. Be Organised
Training the remote team requires an organised approach. Are you sure that your employees have everything they need to do their job? Have you set up workflows, tools, communication channels, and course materials? Do they know the deadlines and expectations?
Ways to stay organised include:
- Establishing the right tools and staying within boundaries
- Setting up proper workflows
- Giving your employees access to the company calendar (to avoid conflicts)
- Using chat apps for quick team communication
8. Be Flexible When Managing Remote Teams
Working remotely can be great, but sometimes it may also cause specific issues like different work hours, lack of motivation, and distractions. As a manager, set the rules and be flexible when necessary.
If your employees cannot conform with some aspects of their job, try not to impose strict deadlines but become more lenient instead.
Regional differences can cause misunderstandings. Try to keep the working hours aligned according to the different time zones. Also, select popular tools in your company or industry to avoid any compatibility problems.
If you have a distributed team, it will be wise to offer them the flexibility of choosing their preferred timeframes and locations. This way, you’ll build trust amongst your employees and motivate them to work harder for your company.
Also, remember that what works in your physical office might not work for your remote team. For instance, lengthy virtual meetings are ineffective. Instead, try scheduling quick calls or video chats during days when your employees are more productive.
9. Have Reasonable Expectations
Training a remote team is not easy because the interactions are limited to virtual channels. As a result, there are certain limitations you have to be aware of before conducting the training sessions.
Also, try to understand whether your team members feel confident enough to contribute and add value to the conversation. If you notice they hesitate, ask them what they think of a particular topic or any solutions to suggest. By doing that, you will encourage more open dialogue and also build trust.
10. Encourage Collaboration
Collaboration, teamwork, and communication are essential. Training a remote team requires a collaborative approach where team members share their ideas and thoughts.
Try to be open-minded and avoid imposing your point of view when it differs from what your employees think.
If you give your employees the chance to express their opinions, they will feel valued and involved. It will also help you get fresh insights and new ideas to improve the existing methodologies, adding value to your business.
Are You Trying to Create an Office Design That Accommodates Everyone?
Accommodating employees and providing a suitable work environment can make a huge difference when managing remote teams. It’s highly recommended to pick an office design that suits everyone’s needs.
After all, it will affect their productivity and overall job satisfaction. From open spaces with lots of light to closed rooms, Aura is here to ensure you end up with the right office design. Contact us for a free consultation.