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Focus On These 5 Areas To Effectively Manage Remote Teams

Managing teams is a tricky job. The challenge goes one level higher when you are dealing with remote teams. However, nothing is a challenge big enough that an intelligent manager cannot overcome. With a focus on specific challenges related to remote teams, you can work effectively to jump over new hurdles that the shift in work mode has brought. This blog post will outline the five skills you need to focus on to manage remote teams at work effectively. After reading this blog, we hope you can manage remote teams more effectively and help them succeed at their jobs.

Essential skills for to effectively manage remote teams

While managing remote teams, you need the typical skills of a manager. However, the remote mode of work brings along several unique challenges. And to overcome them, managers and leaders must focus extensively on a few aspects for managing remote teams. Here, we will look at the five key areas and skills managers should always pay attention to if they want to build productive remote teams.

Maintaining a Positive Work Culture

Managing a team of remote workers can be a great way to work from anywhere in the world, but it’s essential to have a positive work culture. It is even more vital to focus on building a positive work culture when your team works remotely because the things that bind your team together are few. The work mode reduces opportunities for informal interaction, which otherwise would have helped build culture and set the values for the team.

In the absence of such avenues, it is vital for managers to emphasize additionally on a positive work culture in their teams. It is also needed because remote workers can get easily isolated from their teams and their work goals. A loss of critical values and work-life balance can negatively impact the team and its productivity.

Thus, managers need to foster communication and enable activities that help build emotional connections among team members to ensure that a healthy culture populates their virtual workplace. A healthy culture unlocks many benefits. Most importantly, to smartly manage remote teams and distributed teams, which are more likely to be diverse than the rest, provide a locus to connect, share, and build together to achieve a common goal.

Providing Feedback and Recognition

Managing a team of remote workers can be challenging, but it’s worth it if you want to succeed. Feedback and recognition are key to successfully managing remote teams, and there are multiple ways to give them. You can provide feedback in several ways, such as verbal feedback in team meetings. Written feedback can be in the form of team member reviews, team member feedback forms, or employee reviews shared via emails. To make it enjoyable, you can go for visual feedback – from team member photos to team member mood boards.

The key here is to recognize the importance of functional feedback loops in a remote setting, where emotions and opinions are not as easily identifiable as in a traditional workplace. At times, the managers and leaders may need to go above and beyond the call of duty to prof their employees for feedback. It brings twin benefits – feedback from managers keeps teams motivated and improves performance.

On the other hand, feedback from employees helps managers improve and keeps them engaged. The most important thing is finding the best method for you and your team members. Communicate frequently and listen carefully to what people have to say. You will surely manage remote teams successfully with active listening and effective communication as your key skills.

Building Strong Teams

Managing a remote team can be challenging, but with the right strategies in place, it can be a success. Building a solid team is key to winning, and the first step is finding the right people for the job. It’s essential to assess the skills and talents of each individual and then create an environment that allows them to thrive. Hence, beginning managers should hire the right staff for their teams.

In the next step, It’s also essential to set clear goals and objectives, track progress regularly, and make sure everyone is communicative and understands the team’s expectations. In the end, remote team management is all about communication – ensuring everyone is on the same page and that communication is open and honest. With the right strategies in place, remote team management can be a rewarding experience for both managers and teams.

Setting and Communicating Expectations

As we have noted earlier, communication is vital in remote teams. A lot hinges on communication in remote teams. Typically, the obvious things in offline teams working together need to be explicitly communicated with remote teams. Hence managers and leaders of remote teams need to be on top of their communication habits.

Apart from setting healthy communication mechanisms that help teams engage and avoid isolation of team members, it is also important to build emotional connections with the team members. Yes, that sounds in a remote setting when you have probably never met them. But, by engaging with team members repeatedly over multiple tasks and feedback sessions, you can understand their motivation and work with them effectively.

Moreover, it is also essential to identify the right set of communication channels that work for your team. The popular way might be different for your team. Choose what suits you and your challenges to get the best work done in remote mode, too, without letting the distance create a wall between you.

Educate yourself on the struggles of remote management

Lastly, acknowledge that you will face challenges with a remote team. Everyone haphazardly started the remote work mode in response to the pandemic. Therefore, the method will indeed have some issues, which you will figure out and perfect over time. Apart from that, you need to identify the main challenges of remote team management and check whether your team is facing any of those. As we highlighted earlier, a large number of those problems arise due to the absence of direct communication.

Besides those, the isolation of remote workers is a typical puzzle that troubles many managers. Team building activities suffer a lot due to these. More so, if the team is hybrid and not entirely remote, proximity bias can unconsciously affect managers and leaders, who might be prone to making ineffective decisions. In all of these situations, managers need to think a step ahead and take steps to help their teams overcome these challenges.

Conclusion

As the business world moves increasingly digital, the need for team management skills has never been greater. While managing remote teams can seem like a novel experience to many managers, it opens countless team opportunities. And although effective communication has always been a critical skill for effective management, it changes a lot in the online mode.

Owing to these changes, managers must also learn and help their teams with the same. Here are five essential things to keep in mind that will help you manage remote teams effectively. By learning and practising these skills, you’ll be able to build a team that is productive and supportive. Stay tuned for more helpful tips on team management and leadership!

Check how much your constructive feedback skills are helping you in remote work.

Try the free constructive feedback self-assessment for managers to unlock insights on your bind spots and become more effective.

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