The Best Tips for Remote Team Communication
What are the best tips for remote team communication?
- Use Appropriate Messaging Channels
- Schedule Regular Video Calls
- Set Clear Guidelines and Instructions
- Conduct Regular Team-Building Events
The work from the home culture we currently experience in this pandemic brings a lot of positive and negative effects. It allowed us to spend more time with our loved ones while still completing our tasks at work. One downside from working from home is the lack of face-to-face communication that can make you feel alone and depressed. We all miss an energetic high-five and a gentle pat on the back for doing a good job. Today, we will be learning how to make the best of remote team communication. These tips will make work from home so much easier!
Use Appropriate Messaging Channels
Emails are a part of a workday even back when there was no pandemic. It is useful in sending important documents and formal messages. But it is not a good channel for asking questions that need to be answered immediately.
Find a messaging application that has “rooms” that can represent your office departments. Having chat rooms that are always open can help your team collaborate right away at any given moment.
Some companies have a more informal chat room for non-work related chats. It is a virtual water cooler where employees can hang out and just chat. This can help build camaraderie in employees and reduce work stress. Even back then in the office, casual chats would help lighten the workload!
Schedule Regular Video Calls
It is important to check-in on each other once in a while. The lockdown and pandemic have caused people to feel anxious and depressed. The lack of social interaction and excessive working has made people feel burnout. Some people are not even tech-savvy, to begin with. So it is important to show some care and empathy with each other.
Not everything can be done by chatting or emailing. These two channels of communication, while useful, lack the non-verbal elements like facial expression, voice pitch, and hand gestures. Video calls can have all of those elements, except physical touch.
Weekly video meetings can connect all employees and align them with the announcements, goals, and achievements of the team. This can provide an opportunity to voice concerns and opinions about a project. But always remember to only schedule meetings with a purpose as to not waste your teammates’ time.
Set Clear Guidelines and Instructions
Supervising remote workers is harder than supervising in a physical office. You cannot see what your team member is doing at office hours. This can bring about an issue of trust unless you do something.
Set clear guidelines for expectations for everyone in your team. Set deadlines, daily tasks, and communicate instructions about timekeeping and taking breaks. When you set guidelines, it removes the guesswork on what a team member must abide by. Everyone will have a routine to follow.
One example is communicating the guidelines for breaks. Avoid settling for verbal communication and put your instructions into writing to avoid miscommunication. Be very specific. For example, you can either set a specific hour for lunch from 12 noon to 1 pm. Or you can assign a 1-hour break every day that your members can take any time.
Conduct Regular Team-Building Events
Not all kinds of office work will provide constant human interaction. Some occupations, like software programming, is more focused on constant computer work. Even more so, when in remote work setup. This doesn’t mean that we have to stop all fun activities that used to happen back at the office. There are a lot of fun ideas that could be implemented in a virtual setting.
Having fun can affect personal connections and even work itself. A study showed that happier employees tend to be more productive. A closer relationship with one another will also allow a team member to open up and communicate ideas and concerns better.
Good communication is key to making remote work more pleasant and fun. Physical distancing doesn’t mean that you have to distance yourself emotionally from your team as well.
There are different communication channels that you can use to maintain a good workflow and camaraderie within your team. Just remember to communicate clearly what you need from your teammates. Schedule regular video calls to check-in on your team and their concerns. All these virtual channels can be used not just for work, but also for fun because a happy team is a productive team. Follow all these remote team communication tips to create the best remote work experience for everyone.