The best way to describe remote work is as a “work-in-progress.” It can be great for people who want more flexibility or need to care for children or family members, and it’s perfect for digital nomads. But there are still some wrinkles to iron out.
For one, working remotely often lacks the water-cooler moments you get in an office; you can’t just turn to your colleague next to you and ask what they think of a problem. Another issue: it can be difficult to maintain a sense of teamwork.
With that said, it’s totally possible to create a great team environment with remote team members. I have a team of four consisting of two from the U.S. and two from the Philippines working in my dropshipping store. We have a super team dynamic.
Here are 41 tips that I put together along with other managers and workers who have mastered the art of remote work. From scheduling to communication, these tips will help you build and maintain strong teamwork when working remotely – whether you’re spending one day a week at home or working from your laptop all over the world.
What are some ways to encourage teamwork when working remotely?
1. Define roles and responsibilities
In order to encourage effective teamwork when working remotely, it is important to first define roles and responsibilities. By doing this, team members will know what is expected of them and can be held accountable for their contributions.
Furthermore, clear communication is essential in a remote work environment. Team members should keep each other updated on their progress and any changes that need to be made to the plan.
Finally, it is important to build trust within the team. This can be done by being reliable and dependable, as well as showing respect for each other’s time and work.
2. Set clear objectives
In order to encourage team-building rituals when working not in the office, it is important to set clear objectives. This will ensure that everyone is on the same page and knows what is expected of them. Clear objectives will help to keep everyone accountable and focused. Additionally, it is important to have regular check-ins and to provide feedback in a timely manner.
3. Create a team vision
Creating a team vision is a great way to encourage effective teamwork when working remotely. By doing this, you can help everyone on the team understand the goals of the project and how their individual work fits into the bigger picture. Setting up regular check-ins and team meetings can help everyone stay on track and communicate effectively.
4. Encourage open communication
There are a few key ways to encourage smart team communication and a positive team spirit when working remotely, such as:
- Schedule regular check-ins with team members to discuss progress and challenges
- Encourage team members to share ideas and concerns openly
- Use collaborative tools to help team members stay connected and on track
- Celebrate successes and learn from failures together
By following these tips, you can create a remote work environment that promotes open communication and effective teamwork.
5. Hold regular team meetings
It’s important to keep everyone on the same page when all team members are working from their homes. You can use a chat tool like Slack to keep everyone in communication. Make sure to set ground rules for communication and collaboration, so everyone has the same mindset around the technologies.
Employee monitoring is more difficult with remote support teams but holding regular team meetings through video conferencing tools or conference calls helps. This gives everyone a chance to check in, ask questions, and raise any concerns they may have.
Another best practice is to set clear expectations. This means being clear about deadlines, deliverables, and what is expected of each team member. This will help to avoid any confusion and will help keep everyone on track.
Finally, it’s important to stay in communication with your team. This means being available to answer questions, provide feedback, and give direction when needed. By staying in touch, you can help to ensure that your team is productive and successful.
6. Encourage social interaction
There are several ways to encourage social interaction when working remotely:
- Schedule regular video conferences or calls with the entire team.
- Make time for small talk and personal catch-ups during video conferences or calls.
- Use a chat tool like Slack for quick back-and-forth between team members.
- Create or join remote co-working groups.
- Plan remote team-building activities or outings.
7. Provide training and support
There are several ways to encourage effective teamwork when working remotely, including:
- Providing training and support on how to use remote collaboration tools
- Encouraging team members to stay in communication with each other
- Creating opportunities for team members to socialize and bond with each other
- Encouraging team members to share their successes and challenges with each other
- Recognizing and celebrating team accomplishments
8. Celebrate successes
- Acknowledge a job well done in a team meeting or via email
- Thank team members individually for their contributions
- Congratulate the team on a job well done in a team meeting
- Celebrate birthdays and work anniversaries with e-cards or small gifts
- Plan fun virtual team-building activities
- Have a virtual happy hour. Get everyone on a video call and raise a glass to the team’s success. This is a great way to stay connected and build morale.
How can you promote communication and collaboration among team members?
1. Use communication tools
There are a variety of communication tools that can be used to promote communication and collaboration among team members, including:
- Instant messaging
- Video conferencing
- Project management software
- Social media
Each of these tools has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to choose the right tool for the job. For example, email is great for written communication, but it can be slow and cumbersome for back-and-forth conversation. Instant messaging is great for quick questions and conversations, but it can be disruptive if it’s used constantly. We use Slack daily and it makes us feel like we are all just a cubicle away.
2. Centralize your knowledge
One way to promote communication and collaboration among team members is to centralize your knowledge. This can be done by creating a knowledge base where team members can share information and resources. This will help team members to be on the same page and will make it easier for them to collaborate.
What are some ways to keep team members engaged and motivated?
1. Recognize and reward good performance
There are many ways to keep team members engaged and motivated, but one of the most important is to recognize and reward good performance. This can be done through financial incentives, such as bonuses or raises, or non-financial incentives, such as awards or public recognition. Whatever the method, it is important to ensure that team members feel that their hard work is being appreciated and that their contributions are making a difference.
2. Recognize and reward team achievements
Recognize and reward team achievements to keep team members engaged and motivated. This can be done in a number of ways, such as:
- Publicly acknowledging team members for their contributions
- Giving team members bonuses or raises
- Providing team members with additional vacation days or other perks
- Encouraging team members to share their ideas and suggestions
Recognizing and rewarding team achievements is a great way to keep team members engaged and motivated. It shows them that their efforts are appreciated and that their contributions are making a difference.
3. Promote team building and collaboration
One way to keep team members engaged and motivated is to promote team building and collaboration. This can be done by:
- Planning team-building activities
- Encouraging team members to work together on projects
- Recognizing and celebrating team accomplishments
- Encouraging open communication among team members
Another way to keep team members engaged and motivated is to provide opportunities for personal and professional development. This can be done by:
- Offering training and development opportunities
- Encouraging team members to pursue personal and professional goals
- Supporting team members in their professional development
4. Support a healthy work-life balance
There are a few key ways to support a healthy work-life balance for team members:
- Encourage regular breaks and vacations
- Promote flexible work hours
- Support telecommuting or working from home when possible
- Offer child care or other family-friendly benefits
- Encourage employees to use their paid time off
By supporting a healthy work-life balance, team members will be more engaged and motivated to do their best work.
How can you troubleshoot and resolve conflicts among team members?
1. Make communication a priority
It’s important to be able to communicate with one another to effectively resolve conflicts. Try to:
- Understand the conflict from the other person’s perspective
- Find a common ground
- Respectfully disagree
- Seek outside help if needed
- Keep an open mind
- Be willing to compromise
2. Compromise when necessary
Conflicts among team members can be resolved by compromising. This means that each team member must be willing to give up something in order to reach an agreement. For example, if two team members are arguing over who should get the last piece of cake, they could agree to split it in half.
3. Seek outside help from a mediator or counselor
If you’re having trouble resolving conflicts among team members, you may need to seek outside help from a mediator or counselor. This professional can help you and the other members of your team to communicate more effectively and find a resolution that everyone can agree on.
How can you create a productive and positive work environment for team members?
1. The importance of a positive work environment
Creating a positive work environment is important for several reasons:
- It can boost morale and motivation
- It can improve communication
- It can increase productivity
- It can promote creativity
- It can reduce stress
There are a few things you can do to create a positive work environment, such as:
- Encourage team building activities
- Promote open communication
- Recognize and reward good work
- Encourage a healthy work-life balance
- Provide adequate resources and support
2. Communicate the company’s core values
One way to create a productive and positive work environment is to communicate the company’s core values. Doing so will help team members understand the company’s goals and how they can contribute to them. Additionally, it is important to provide employees with the resources they need to succeed and to give them opportunities to provide feedback. Finally, regular recognition and appreciation for a job well done can go a long way in creating a positive work environment.
3. Introduce team members
It’s important to introduce team members to each other so that everyone is on the same page and knows who is responsible for what. A productive and positive work environment can be created by:
- Encouraging team members to communicate openly with each other
- Encouraging team members to collaborate with each other
- Encouraging team members to support each other
By encouraging team members to communicate openly, collaborate, and support each other, you can create a productive and positive work environment.
4. Create onboarding knowledge base
An onboarding knowledge base can help new team members feel welcome and productive from their first day. It can include:
- The company’s history, mission, and values
- An overview of the team’s structure and roles
- Key contacts and resources
- A calendar of events and deadlines
- Helpful tips and tricks
Creating and maintaining an onboarding knowledge base is a simple way to support your team and help new members hit the ground running.
5. Put up a virtual bulletin board
Create a space where employees can post photos, articles, and other items related to the team’s success. This is a great way to share information and keep everyone updated on the latest news.
6. Hold weekly video team meetings
In order to create a productive and positive work environment for team members, it is important to hold weekly video team meetings. This will allow team members to stay up-to-date on what is going on in the company, and will also allow them to voice any concerns they may have. Additionally, holding weekly video team meetings will allow team members to get to know each other better and build relationships.
What are some tips for setting team goals and objectives?
1. Define the team’s vision and purpose
The first step in setting team goals and objectives is to define the team’s vision and purpose. This will help to ensure that everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goal.
Once the vision and purpose have been established, the next step is to set realistic and achievable goals. It is important to set goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
The company culture leads the way for a super remote workforce so it is important to communicate the goals and objectives to all members of the team. This will ensure that everyone in the organization is on board with the plan.
2. Get input from team members
It’s important to get input from team members when setting goals and objectives. This ensures that everyone is on the same page and that the goals are realistic. Furthermore, setting goals as a team can help to build team morale and unity.
Some tips for setting team goals and objectives include:
- Brainstorming as a team to come up with goals
- Holding a vote to determine the most important goals
- Breaking down goals into smaller, more manageable objectives
- Assigning objectives to specific team members
- Creating a timeline for goal completion
- Celebrating as a team when goals are met
3. Hold team members accountable
- Set specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals.
- Make sure everyone on the team understands the goals and objectives.
- Hold team members accountable for meeting the goals and objectives.
- Celebrate progress along the way.
- Review and adjust the goals and objectives as needed.
How can you manage and monitor team progress?
1. Use a project management tool
There are a number of project management tools available that can help you keep track of team progress and ensure that deadlines are met. Some of the most popular project management and team collaboration tools include:
Each of these tools has its own unique features and benefits that can help you stay on top of team progress and ensure that tasks are being completed efficiently.
2. Use a time tracking tool
By using a time tracking tool, you can:
- Stay on top of deadlines
- Monitor team progress
- See where improvements can be made
- Allocate resources more efficiently
- Make data-driven decisions
Time tracking tools are an essential part of any project manager’s toolkit. They help you to stay on top of deadlines, monitor team progress, and see where improvements can be made. By using a time tracking tool, you can allocate resources more efficiently and make data-driven decisions.
What are some ways to celebrate team successes?
At a time when so many people are working from home, it can be difficult to find ways to celebrate team successes. However, there are a few simple things that managers can do to help build team morale and show appreciation for a job well done.
1. Send a personal message
Take the time to send personal messages of congratulations to each team member. A handwritten note or an e-mail with specific praise can go a long way in making employees feel valued.
2. Have a team zoom celebration
One way to celebrate team successes is to have a team zoom celebration. This can be done by setting up a zoom meeting and inviting everyone on the team. During the meeting, everyone can share what they are proud of and what they have accomplished. You can also celebrate birthdays! This is a great way to build team morale and show everyone that their hard work is appreciated.
3. Give employees the day off
Don’t forget to show your gratitude in more concrete ways, such as offering extra vacation days. A surprise 1/2 day off or full day off is always a welcomed treat for an employee. The more you show your appreciation for an employee’s hard work, the more they will return with a stronger sense of dedication and loyalty.
4. Give employees a bonus
One way to celebrate team successes is to give employees a bonus. This could be in the form of a monetary bonus or a gift card. By taking the time to celebrate successes, you can help keep your team motivated and engaged.
5. Send an e-gifts
A little recognition goes a long way. Show your employees you appreciate their hard work with a thoughtful e-card or e-gift. They can be purchased online and sent via email so they’re perfect for remote team members.
What are some best practices for remote team management?
1. Set clear expectations
It is important to set clear expectations with your remote teams in order to ensure that everyone is on the same page. This includes expectations around work hours, communication, and deadlines. Having a clear understanding of everyone’s roles and responsibilities is also crucial.
It is also important to provide your team with the tools and resources they need to be successful. This includes things like access to relevant software, training materials, and clear documentation.
Finally, it is important to stay in close communication with your team and be available to answer any questions or address any concerns. Regular check-ins and team meetings can help with this.
2. Use project management tools
There are a few best practices for remote business management, including using project management tools, communicating often, and setting clear expectations.
Project management tools can help you keep track of deadlines, assigned tasks, and progress. Communication is key to keeping everyone on the same page, and setting clear expectations will help everyone know what is expected of them.
3. Promote a healthy work-life balance
There are a few key things you can do to promote a healthy work-life balance for your remote team:
- Encourage regular breaks and time away from work for rest
- Set clear boundaries between work and personal time
- Be available for communication and support when needed, but respect employees’ personal time
- Offer flexible scheduling options so employees can work when they are most focused
- Provide resources and support for employees to manage stress and stay healthy
Team building activities for remote employees
Any good manager knows that team building is essential to a happy and productive workplace. But when your team is spread out across the country (or even the world), it can be tricky to find ways to bond. In-person activities like bowling or happy hour are out of the question, so you might have to get a little creative. Here are four ideas for fun and bonding activities with your remote team members:
1. Schedule a weekly video call for “coffee chat” or “wine Wednesday”
These don’t have to be anything formal, just a chance for everyone to catch up and chat about whatever they want. It’s a great way to stay connected with each other on a personal level, see each other’s faces, and bond over shared interests.
2. Set up a group chat on your team messaging app
Make it mandatory that everyone check in at the beginning of their work day and at the end of the work day. At a minimum, this creates an accountable system so everyone is sticking to their schedule and feels connected to the team
3. Have a virtual game night
Get everyone together for some games, fun, and laughs – all from the comfort of their own homes. There are tons of online games that can be played with multiple people in different locations. Pick a few that everyone can enjoy and set up a time for everyone to hop on and play together. Virtual parties are a great way to build team morale and show your employees you care about their well-being.
4. Create a shared document
This can be used for things like sharing recipes, books, articles, or anything else that interests your team. Everyone can add their own contributions and it’ll be a great way to bond over common interests.
5. Host a “show off your pet” Zoom call
Everyone loves to show off their furry friends. Schedule a time for your remote team to jump on a video call to introduce their pets to the group. Depending on your team size, you can schedule one or two team members per week to show off their pets so this exercise could last for many months.
With a little bit of effort, you can ensure that your remote team members feel just as connected (and bonded!) as your in-person employees.
Continuing education on teamwork
We hope you’ve found these teamwork tips helpful, no matter where you work. If you want to learn more about how to be a successful remote worker, we have plenty of resources for you!
Our comprehensive guide to working from home covers everything from time management and communication tips to setting boundaries with your coworkers. You can also find out more about the best tools for remote workers and how to stay productive when you aren’t feeling up to it.