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Guide to Managing Remote Teams


8 min read

Business school does not give you a guide to managing remote teams. As a novel phenomenon in business, your professors or mentors are unlikely to have any experience with it.

Many people are unclear how to collaborate when the topic of remote work is brought up. The whole process involves bringing together solo players and project teams from all around the world. In this topic, we’ll try to discover how to manage your staff remotely.

What is a Remote Team?

A remote team consists of people from various backgrounds, abilities, and time zones who work together on the same project. Each team member operates from a separate location, may live in a different city, and must coordinate their actions across space and time. When effectively managing a team remotely, a variety of challenges occur. These include managing teams and keeping projects on track. Working remotely is one thing; managing a team of remote workers is quite another.

There is a major difference between working in front of an office and working behind closed doors when teams are working outside of an office. Nowadays, there are a lot of tips for effectively managing a remote team. Without a question, the remote working culture has a lot to offer: 30% of individuals claim to get more done in less time? 82% of those questioned claimed they were less stressed, and new video conferencing systems have increased employee engagement by 87%.

Challenges in Managing Remote Teams

Working remotely offers its benefits, but it is not without its drawbacks. Working remotely challenges a lot and may jeopardize collaboration.

Different Time Zones

It’s tough to schedule meetings when it is 11 a.m. in Chicago, 5 p.m. in London and 7 p.m. in Istanbul. Nonetheless, it must be completed. To successfully manage a team working remotely, rearrange meeting times.

Don’t always have your British colleagues answer late-night phone calls. Hold a meeting early in the morning every now and then to give them a respite from their hectic routine.

Gaps in Connectivity

60% of remote workers say they feel less connected to their colleagues. This is a problem in the context of developing trust and fostering intimate relationships. The situation does not have to be that dire, and further we’ll give you some tips to manage remote developers on your team effectively and successfully.

Time and effort invested may help your remote personnel create connections. Depending on your goals and resources, team-building activities may be held online or in person. Consider Slack daily check-ins or larger collaborative group initiatives. Teams that do not meet in person on a regular basis (or through video chat) may struggle to build strong ties.

Difficulties in Collaborative Work

Collaborating with coworkers, exchanging ideas, or even stopping by their desk for a quick conversation is straightforward in the office. Not so much while you’re surfing the web. If you want your team to succeed, you can use our further tips for managing remote development teams effectively and successfully with the help of proper software.

Some apps, for example, may allow you to collaborate on graphic design tasks. A project management system may assist in keeping teams on the same page, and your employees may simply begin one-on-one and group discussions.

Cultural Distinctions

Managing staff from other countries, where people have different attitudes about their professions and families have different constraints, is another important challenge of effective management of remote teams.

To interact with personnel more effectively, you must first acknowledge their cultural backgrounds. Managers often lack the skills to deal with cultural differences when organizing a global workforce. Work ethics vary among cultures, and it’s intriguing to watch how they approach the day.

Problems That a Manager Has to Face to Manage a Team Remotely

As a project manager or team lead, you may overcome any obstacles and become a more successful leader of your remote staff with minimal effort. Here are some major problems and tips for managing teams remotely:

  • Everyone should be included. Make sure that everyone is heard, especially during meetings. Make a particular effort to give a venue for everyone to express their concerns and share their views. It will allow them to participate and make them feel more connected to the team as a whole.
  • Staying motivated is important. Maintaining your employees’ excitement is your obligation as their manager. Rather than using a one-size-fits-all technique, you’ll need to personalize your approach to each individual.Realistic goals may thrill some employees, while cooperation and connections may motivate others.
  • Set and stick to your goals. It’s easy to get sidetracked by the big picture when you’re staring at a computer all day. To-do lists frequently arise when Zoom meetings, emails, Slack messages, and Google Docs collide to keep track of all the time.
  • You have to acknowledge success. Everyone aspires to be recognized for their efforts in the product development process. Recognition of contributions should be a top emphasis throughout all-hands meetings as well as individual 1-to-1s.
  • Encourage your employees’ professional development. It’s tough to feel invested in your colleagues’ career route if you’ve never met them. It is, however, your duty to care after it.

Tips for Managing a Remote Team: Effectively and Successfully

Determine your expectations. A full-time schedule isn’t necessary to effectively manage your remote development team. Allow employees more flexibility in their work schedules by informing them of when you want them to be online.

Others may choose to work in the evening, while some prefer to begin their days early. However, a clear overlap in your calendars is required to encourage and enable collaboration. You may request that your team members be accessible online between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. (or whatever time zone they are in) on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but the rest of the time is up to them.

Limits must be set. Use proper software tools to respect the time of other team members. People may feel compelled to react to an 8 p.m. email or Slack message.

Instead of asking your staff not to read their messages after hours (which they are unlikely to do), utilize Gmail’s scheduling capability or Slack’s Gator plugin (also for scheduling).

Overcommunicate but prevent micromanaging. Make certain that everyone on your team is up to date. Overcommunicate instead than undercommunicate, but be wary of micromanagement.

Gather the team for frequent stand-up meetings to discuss and agree on short-term and long-term objectives. Each team member should meet once a week to review their progress and what you can do to help.

Zoom isn’t appropriate for every meeting. You might also schedule small 15-minute Slack meetings or a conference call. Keep your meetings exciting to prevent boredom and indifference.

Determine the source of the problem. Ask extra questions to get a better feel of how your team is performing. At the beginning of a 1-to-1 meeting you’ll get an answer “Okay” when you ask “How are you?” Go further: How is your present job situation? Is your remote malfunctioning? What I might do to help?

Make certain that there is no congestion. Keep an eye out for indicators of weariness and burnout in your Slack and email conversations. When you see indications of burnout (such as glazed eyes or missed deadlines), encourage them to take PTO or reschedule their task.

Find an ideal duration of meatings. Regular team meetings keep a company on track. But both too few and too many meetings may reduce productivity and leave team members feeling fatigued and discouraged.

For example, if your team can operate together for 30–60 minutes without interruption, you don’t need a 2-hour meeting.

Find the proper management software. Services like Zoom and Slack have been critical in supporting remote work during the epidemic. On an average day, the time spent commuting to and from work has decreased from 27.6 minutes to a few seconds. But it’s not enough to operate a remote office using Zoom and Slack. It is critical to use remote management tools.

Even if the tendency is to return to the office, technology will play a role in employment. Regardless of the illness epidemic, 82% of American employees choose to work from home once a week. Get rid of the old ways of doing things and adopt the modern ones.

Look for opportunities to collaborate. Employees who are trapped in a rut, doing the same thing over and again, are more likely to get disengaged. Find ways to encourage your staff to collaborate as a whole. Participating in this may result in social encounters, team-building, and greater outcomes.

Collaboration opportunities may not always offer themselves; you may have to actively seek them out or even create them. It may take longer than usual, but it may provide the engagement your employees need to remain motivated and passionate about their job.

Make opportunities for team building. Even if you can’t get together for lunch or an escape room, team building activities may be done remotely. A simple Wordle tournament or 30 minutes of gaming each week may be a lot.

Consider doing a bigger team-building event once every three months. Face-to-face interactions may help create team ties. You may also offer to support a team-building vacation to a crucial location to motivate your teams to reach their goals.

Give feedback. When things go wrong, supervisors may need to step in. When possible, give your staff praise. Giving them credit for their tenacity or dealing with a difficult client is one method to do this. Actively engaged employees think they are being treated seriously. They will not put out as much effort if they do not feel valued. Show the significance of what they do.

Is there a dependable person in your company? Show your appreciation by publicly and privately thanking them for their assistance. Demonstrate to an employee how their content ranks organically and generates income. Motivating workers by linking their efforts to the company’s performance.

Make opportunities for professional development available. Invest in your workers’ future. Bring in a trainer for lectures and 1-to-1 sessions, and pay for continuing education. Consult with your employees to find out what talents they’d want to see. Those interested in studying may get a low-cost business license and enroll in an approved school.

Use empathy. In today’s culture, being an aloof leader is no longer acceptable. Demonstrate to your employees that you really care about their well-being. Be attentive to the sentiments of others. Listen.

Don’t tell, show. Make advantage of the expertise of others when necessary. Speak with an employee about the company’s strategy or future direction. This kind of leadership fosters long-term trust, strong relationships, and significant discoveries.

We at DashDevs have a huge experience in managing remote teams due to the Covid-19 pandemic safety measurements. That is why we are great at IT outsourcing and staff augmentation and can help you at developing your product wherever you are located.

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