Managing a group of people to complete a common goal or task is stressful enough in an office setting, let alone managing a team that is fully remote. On paper, the job description is relatively similar, but there are many more moving parts when all employees work remotely, and at times the line between work and leisure can become blurred.
Here are a few tips that can help you be the best possible manager for your remote team.
Develop a Vision and Plan for Remote Projects
The first thing that must be done before absolutely anything else is developing a proper game plan. You need to have a very clear idea regarding what needs to get done and how you plan on getting it done. You need to have someone in mind for every individual aspect of the project and you need to make your instructions expectations as clear as possible, which leads us to point two.
Over-communicate with Your Team
Communication is vital when it comes to managing a group of remote employees. You, as well as your team, need to know where everyone else is at with their individual roles. This is why frequent meetings are mandatory when it comes to managing a remote team. Having standard weekly or bi weekly meetings greatly assist with communication, and with great software like Zoom or Microsoft Teams, it is easier than ever to virtually meet with your entire team.
Screen sharing is an option so individuals are able to give presentations, ask questions or raise concerns, perfectly replicating a physical meeting where everyone is in the same room. As the team proceeds throughout the project, adjust the meeting frequency and duration to suit the needs of your team.
Check-In With Individual Employees
As important as group meetings are, you need to ensure you are reaching out to your employees individually, as well. Individual attention is important in building a relationship and tightening the bond of a team; just simply asking how the project is going can go a long way.
You need your team to understand that you are indeed managing them, but ultimately you are there if they need any assistance with their designated jobs. Willingness to help your employees will help grow your relationship with your team, and the happier your team is while they are working remotely, they will be more eager to work under you.
It is crucial to maintain a close eye on your team, however you do not want to give off the impression that you are micromanaging or hovering over every detail of their work.
Make Employees Feel Like You Trust Them
Once you have established trust with the individuals, you need to show that you trust them. You need to assume that they are always going to submit their best work, and when they fulfill their end of things you need to make them feel like they accomplished something. There needs to be positive reinforcement when it is deserved since there is no physical contact with the rest of the team. You cannot just walk up to his or her desk and tell them, so make sure you go out of your way.
It is difficult to run a team without ever physically meeting. You need to always at least be partially on the clock in case anybody on your team needs you, and the more you put in the more you will get out. After the initial phases of working remotely, your team will develop a groove and managing will be as simple as it was in the office.
Kuba Jewgieniew is the CEO And Founder of Realty ONE Group, one of the fastest growing franchisors in the industry. He started Realty ONE Group in 2005 with a 100%-commission model and an emphasis on innovation, disruption and fun. He’s won numerous awards and has been recognized for his innovative thinking and leadership. And, with a dynamic leadership team and leagues of committed followers, Realty ONE Group plans to open offices around the world, bettering communities and lives everywhere, leaving a legacy for generations.