Remote teams are usually full of individual experts who live in different parts of the globe. With that in mind, how is it possible to truly build a team spirit when thousands of miles are separating you from your coworkers? Anyone who’s ever been in a long distance relationship know how estranged people can become over time.
Because of that, it’s very important to create a team culture that will keep you and your coworkers moving as a unit. For some people, this comes entirely natural, but others have to willingly put in the work in order to keep things going on the right path. While every team is different, there are a few commonalities that can be noticed regardless of the industry. Here are some common traits that most successful remote teams share.
Establish core group values
Every successful organization needs to have a direction in mind, a set of goals, and a concrete plan on how to get there. All of the members from one team need to understand this before they can fully commit to what they’re doing. Once the group values are established, the strength of the team becomes much more apparent, as all of its members can get locked in on mutual goals.
Still, don’t take this the wrong way. Core group values are important, but they are not exactly set in stone. This is especially true for remote teams that tend to see a lot of fluctuations in time. Additionally, with each new member, the vibe slightly changes, which means that some of the values might alter slightly over time. Whatever the case may be, the most important thing is to adapt to the new changes happening every day.
Once again, communication is the key
Without wanting to sound like every self-help book that’s ever been written, it cannot be stressed enough how important of a role communication plays in our lives. We are not only speaking about mutual communication between team members, or between employees and bosses here either.
Communication with existing and potential clients also plays a major factor to one team’s success. Most modern analysts seem to think that the key to achieving team success can be found in fun offices that look like playgrounds more than anything. Similarly, when it comes to remote teams, added emphasis often gets put on parties, meetings and holiday trips.
However, while those things are fun, they rarely connect people on a deeper level. Experiencing fun times together is nice, but it’s the joint struggle that creates the strongest bonds. Here’s a message to all the bosses around the world: allow your employees to be kind to one another first, and the business will never suffer.
Create virtual chat rooms
There’s also nothing wrong with some casual fun to make the days go by faster. While having a chat room intended for business purposes in absolutely vital, it’s not a bad idea to have a separate one where people can share funny videos, photos of their cats or gorgeous scenery from their latest trip.
There is a ton of software specifically designed for this intention, and most of them come free of charge as well. So, whether it comes to sharing tasks, or just having a virtual get together around a water cooler, it’s not a bad idea to open up a small space where people can exchange a few words.
Great efforts have to be awarded
Because we’re talking about remote workers here, there’s always going to be an issue of lack of control. In case you’re serving as a team leader, this might lead you to become internet police, but more times than not, this is not all that healthy for you, nor for the atmosphere around your squad.
What most teams do instead is measure the productivity of its members, and give out rewards accordingly. What this does is motivate the members to go that extra mile, knowing that their efforts will result in higher income, and a few kind words from the bosses. On the other hand, the job gets done ahead of schedule and the quality is always on point. A win-win situation for both sides!