The best tips for virtual communication and collaboration will help remote and hybrid companies learn how to keep remote teams connected.
Learning how to keep remote teams connected is an integral part of remote work. Connection in the virtual world isn’t something that happens by accident. As a result, teams must intentionally create and maintain connectivity to keep their remote teams together.
A 2020 study conducted by OnePoll shows that 63% of workers feel less engaged with other team members as they missed in-person meetings, after-work happy hours, and office celebrations.
Faced with the challenges of distance working, remote companies must introduce inventive ways to keep their teams together.
In this article, we discuss how to keep remote teams connected with the following:
- The Importance of Team Connection
- Tips for How to Keep Remote Teams Connected
The Importance of Team Connection
Working remotely allows employees and managers to discover how to keep their remote teams connected and build stronger bonds. Though the idea of working outside of a traditional office space can seem like an isolating experience, it doesn’t need to be. By making a significant effort to keep your team members connected, remote teams will increase productivity, morale, and employee loyalty.
Tips for How to Keep Remote Teams Connected
Connection is one of the most sought-after intangibles in the remote working world. Though navigating connection in an age of distributed work can be challenging, the right tips on how to keep remote teams connected in hybrid and remote companies can completely transform how teams work together.
Learn how to keep remote teams connected by applying the following:
1. Hold Regular Meetings
One of the most important ways to keep your remote team connected is with weekly video meetings. Digital tools and tech give remote teams the opportunity for face-to-face interaction. Though team members aren’t able to see each other at the office, the power of video chat makes it possible to read each other’s body language as they chat over Skype or Zoom.
Successfully leading virtual meetings is an important factor in learning how to keep remote teams connected. Proper facilitation will help you lead engaging meetings where team members can connect and communicate in very meaningful ways. Regular meetings that are organized, engaging, and informative will help your employees feel like valued members of their team.
2. Use Tools for Collaboration
Collaboration tools are also essential as you learn how to keep remote teams connected. The most productive teams use messaging tools like Asana or Slack as these platforms allow them to better organize their communications based on projects, locations, or teams. With the right communication tools and resources, team members are able to stay in constant contact throughout the workweek.
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In addition to using collaboration tools for work-related discussions, consider dedicating channels to general conversation. This allows team members to bond and connect with one another outside of work-related topics.
3. Encourage Open Communication
Open communication is a must for remote teams.
Keep communication open by holding check-in meetings regularly to make sure your team members have the support they need to complete their projects.
Additionally, creating a company culture that encourages employees to share openly is another important step in keeping remote teams connected.
4. Be Transparent and Kind
Encourage transparency and kindness in all virtual communications to ensure team members understand and avoid any misinterpretation. Humor, concern, and urgency are all challenging to convey through virtual communications, so be sure to say what you mean in all emails, texts, voice calls, and all forms of communication going forward. In cases of miscommunication, leaning on a culture of kindness will help to smooth out any misunderstanding between team members.
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5. Utilize Asyncrouns Collaboration
Asynchronous collaboration will unite and unleash your remote team. Collaborating in real-time with tools like MURAL, Figma, and Loom allows your team moments of deep focus across timezones while achieving faster results than traditional asynchronous communications. This also allows for more intentional and meaningful meetings when the team meets virtually.
6. Offer Your Team a Better Work-Life Balance
Increasing your team’s morale by promoting a healthy work-life balance is another essential way to keep teams connected. A healthy work-life balance helps remote team members feel better about themselves and their work. However, hybrid and remote work makes maintaining this balance even more of a challenge.
Work to connect your team by offering more flexibility. Give your team members the ability to work when they choose to while clearly outlining deadlines and expectations. Additionally, encourage your team members to take vacations and go off the grid to protect them from burning out. With the ability to take breaks as needed, team members will be ready and excited to get to work once they return.
7. Encourage Mentorship
It’s easy for remote team members to feel disconnected, especially if they are new hires or haven’t created close relationships with other team members. By creating a mentorship program, employees will know that they always have support should they have questions or concerns. Moreover, having a mentor will help team members feel as if they are an integral part of the team and that there are always resources available to help them do their best work.
8. Celebrate Your Team Members
Never underestimate the power of appreciation in remote teams. Recognizing each employee’s improvements and accomplishments is a key step in making them feel truly connected to their team. Taking the time to celebrate their wins and their quality of work will boost their self-efficacy and productivity.
Offering praise remotely is as simple as sending a quick text or email to celebrate a job well done. A more formal celebration of accomplishments can include acknowledging employee accomplishments in an Employee of the Month program or similar event. Additionally, creating a company culture that encourages team members to praise each other will help them feel better about themselves and their coworkers.
9. Host In-Person Retreats
Remote teams should make an effort to plan yearly in-person retreats to help build stronger connections with team members. While creating relationships remotely is an important part of remote work, there is nothing like connecting with your team in person. It may not be possible for all team members to make it to the exact location, getting most of your team members in the same room at least once a year will deepen connections and allow them to spend quality time with each other.
10. Provide Feedback
Just as showing appreciation is an important step in learning how to keep remote teams connected, providing feedback is another essential part of helping teams understand how they can improve. As many remote workers interact with each other around specific projects, it’s important that they understand where they’re succeeding and how they can do better going forward. Making an effort to give constructive and honest feedback will help your team grow stronger overall.
11. Have Fun Traditions
At times, working remotely can seem like checking off tasks from a to-do list. Team managers can counteract this by establishing fun traditions within the company. From virtual pizza parties to having a Fun Friday once a month, finding ways to inject fun into your team’s remote routine will help employees feel good about being part of the team.
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Don’t let a lack of connection unravel your team. At Voltage Control, we help remote teams learn the best ways to communicate and engage with each other. Connect with us to learn more about how to keep remote teams connected.