Remote team working is here to stay! And, a number of challenges exist in remote team management such as interruption to work/home life, loneliness and technology glitches, however one of the biggest challenges is ensuring you have effective communications. To overcome this, new ways of working must be established through trust and shared commitment supported by effective communication techniques. Enhanced communications through multiple means of engagement establishes a more human connection ultimately ensuring team success.
“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” George Bernard Shaw
New Leadership is required for remote teams
A worldwide study mentioned in a Grow article “7 Communication Secrets of Effective Remote Teams” indicates that over 40% of the world’s working population -- will be mobile by 2022: recent events will only increase these estimates! This means that a new kind of leadership and management approach is required, with remote teams facing unique communication challenges, such as coordinating across time zones and overcoming language and cultural barriers. The distance also makes it harder for team members to feel like a team. In the worst-case scenario, they’re just strangers who happen to be working on the same project -- exchanging messages, but missing out on the collaboration and creative synergy that can make work exceptional and emotionally fulfilling. The article suggests some ways real companies have bridged the virtual communications gap between remote employees so they can work well (and work closely!) even if they’re apart:
- Have regular live meetings
- Create opportunities for people to connect as people
- Invest in messaging technologies that drive collaboration
- Set up communication guidelines
- Emphasize the purpose… then emphasize it again
- Manage by objective
- Teach people to contextualize communication
Choose your Official Communications Channel
In my blog “Great Checklist for the Managers of Remote Workers,” a number of tips are provided, a key one being Communication:
- Try and treat all interactions as close to usual as possible, so that you can help your team members adjust and stay engaged
- Choose one of your communication site’s channels or threads to use as an official ‘Announcements’ source, that your team knows to check regularly to keep up to date with important changes and information
- Arrange a video chat each morning with your team to get everyone feeling connected and pumped for the day ahead
- Have meetings one-on-one with each team member on a regular basis to keep them motivated and engaged
- Make sure to arrange check-ins that are to do with your team member’s wellbeing, not about work
I know if my remote team felt I wasn’t leading them effectively, I would want to know. Sometimes as managers we can get caught up in the big picture or crisis at hand and forget the details or the people, we are leading. Have the courage and kindness to speak up and say something. Being clear is being kind.
Leadership isn’t easy and sometimes we need help. I am always here.
Get in touch today to learn more about how to build leadership skills for remote team management and set yourself up for success!
Stay Kind. Stay Courageous.
About the Author Sonia McDonald
She believes we should lead with kindness and courage, from the heart, doing rather than telling and is known for her mantra ‘just lead’. She leads by example in all these areas and through her one on one practical coaching, leadership training for teams and organisations encourages others to do the same. Sonia has helped hundreds of people on their leadership journey to become the best version of themselves and in turn, inspire and bring out the best in others. Also she and her team have worked and partnered with a number of businesses and companies for over a decade build great leadership teams and cultures.
For more than 25 years, Sonia has been on the front lines of Human Resources, Leadership and People and Culture. She has held leadership positions worldwide and through experience, research and study come to realise what it takes to be a truly great leader.
Sonia has an ability to speak bravely and authentically about her own development as a leader, personal and career challenges in a way which resonates with her audience. She is recognised as a LinkedIn influencer and has become an in-demand keynote speaker, starts important conversations.
She is an award-winning published author of Leadership Attitude and Just Rock It! and writes regularly for publications such as The Australian, HRD Magazine, Smart Healthy Women and Women’s Business Media. Sonia has become recognised for her commentary around the topic of leadership, championing the up and coming leaders of tomorrow, advocating for women in business as well as building leaders in small business.
Keynote Topics for 2020
Sonia will give you peace of mind when booking a speaker. She is a proven world-class professional speaker with the skills to “rock an audience”. Her energy, empathy, kindness, sensitivity, and humour will enhance any event she appears.
1. Leadership Attitude
2. Just Rock It
3. First Comes Courage
4. Courage is Impact
5. Courage is Purpose
6. Courage is Resilience
7. Courage is Kindness
Phone 1300 719 665
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