One of the biggest challenges faced by businesses with a remote work setup is keeping the culture alive. Aside from migrating data to the cloud, maintaining culture is also necessary for success and survival.
So how do you maintain culture once team members are dispersed to different locations? The answer varies depending on the core values, functions, and resources of an organization. For teams still figuring out how to do it, here’s an inspiration.
”Some might be sufficiently connected with other team members that they’re comfortable transitioning to working separately. Newcomers might need more time to establish rapport. Those who are often working solo might also feel disconnected from the rest of the team. I would advise business managers to set a time for casual interactions to balance the levels of comfort. Check individually and as a group, ask questions and suggestions, conduct surveys, and play games,” advised team leader and small business loan provider Shane Perry of Max Funding.
Transitioning from seeing colleagues in the office each day to only seeing them once a month comes with specific challenges. Video calling helps bridge the difference. And seeing a familiar happy face can quickly lighten your mood.
Chats, emails, text messages are prone to misinterpretation. Proofread a few times before sending and take extra miles with politeness, despite the length and depth of the relationship. If allowed, insert emojis. And if possible, just talk to the person via video or phone call.
You might even have employees in other parts of the world. Let’s say you’re hiring remotely from Canada using a service like this one: Guide on Hiring Employees in Canada | Remote. If that’s the case, you’ll need to be mindful of some additional challenges: disparate time zones, cultural differences, and possible language barriers, to name just a few.
Communicate More Often
In an actual workplace, it’s easy to tell if somebody is immersed in their tasks or free for a discussion. However, when working remotely, it’s challenging to know what everyone’s doing.
Designate a collaboration channel for keeping each one informed, such as Microsoft Teams and Slack. Set a time for solo work and collaboration so that you know when to check the channel and avoid disrupting notifications.
Let them know if you’re focusing on something, out for lunch, or free to help. Also, share what you’ve accomplished so far.
Maintain Office Rewards and Traditions
Rewards and traditions instill excitement. If you give rewards for specific accomplishments in the office, try to implement them in the remote work setup.
Keeping traditions is also an effective way to keep the spirit alive. It would be best to host a small party at the end of the month so that office staff can loosen up and get to know each other more.
Similarly, when they moved to a virtual environment, the manager hired a local business to prepare a “party box” for each employee. The party box contains an assortment of food items, like cheese, chocolates, nuts and fruits, and a small bottle of wine.
Identify the traditions in your physical office and figure out which can be practically carried to the online office. There are lots of ways to promote teamwork with remote employees so find what works best for your business.