10 tips how to master remote collaboration

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COVID-19 has irrevocably changed the way we work, giving birth to a remote work revolution. This at the same time forced companies to make on the spot decisions and explore new ways of remote collaboration. Businesses that had introduced virtual offices by that time offered various management strategic guides for embracing remote collaboration, vendors released applications and tools which facilitate the shift to remote working environments and make the communication and collaboration in hybrid and remote teams more efficient.

Everybody realized that the success of the business relies on the effectiveness of team collaboration. Thus, making this process efficient is the highest priority for many companies today. When a team can work together effectively and show great results the business will grow. On the other side, poor collaboration will lead to low motivation, negative results and an unhealthy working environment.

While remote work presents its own challenges, it also provides opportunities for innovation and creativeness. As a result, this will help to foster a positive working environment and attract new talents.

In this post we will share 10 tips on how to master remote collaboration. These recommendations will not only facilitate productivity but also nurture creativity and innovation. No matter whether you have a hybrid office or remote teams all over the globe, effective collaboration is the core of success.

Make your communication efficient

The first step to building a successful and efficient remote collaboration is to take care of proper internal communication. Virola business messenger will fulfill not only your communication needs, but will also offer a rich set of tools for team collaboration:

  • Private and group chats
  • Video and audio meetings
  • Screen sharing and remote control
  • Issues creating and tracking
  • Kanban board for task management
  • Flexible permission settings
  • Unlimited files sharing
  • Self-hosted solution
  • Integration with your business environment
  • Efficient workflow management

Preserve transparency

It is important to stay transparent and make it possible to address problems or issues directly. This helps to build trust because it shows that you're not afraid of confronting problems. By organizing social events and providing opportunities for team members to contact leaders on a personal level, you will cultivate a culture of open communication and transparency.

Take care of your information security

Communication within the organization is the weakest side of any security system. Thus, to keep internal information protected it is important to introduce secure and reliable business messenger for your team communication.

Most data leakages happen when employees share information in different unsecure messengers, send files and important documents through non-encrypted channels. However, if you keep all your business communication in one place, this will significantly decrease the risk of security breaches and will help to keep your internal information protected.

Hold daily meetings

Regular meetings are important for remote teams as they allow keeping employees up to date and track their progress effectively. Moreover, they help to detect negativity as well as avoid burnout and disengagement among employees.

Virola corporate messenger provides a wide range of tools for holding daily meetings. Team members can join them with a click in group chats and record if necessary. Daily meetings encourage employees to share their ideas, doubts and discuss challenges they face.

Cultivate a culture of trust and autonomy

Trust and autonomy are a fundamental necessity in remote work environments. They form the foundation of successful collaboration within your team. To cultivate trust within your team you need to empower your employees with a certain level of autonomy, allow them to make their own decisions and bear responsibility for them. Thus, to build trust and foster autonomy you need to:

  • set clear goals and expectations
  • empower your team members to make decisions
  • host regular virtual meetings to discuss goals
  • encourage active engagement and participation in discussions
  • involve team members in a decision making process

Create flexible work environment

Most people belong to two types of sleepers – early birds and night owls. Thus, the productivity hours are different for these people. While morning larks are most efficient in the morning, the peak of productiveness for night owls is in the afternoon. To maintain a healthy working environment it is important to make it flexible and take into account preferences of your employees when scheduling virtual meetings.

Promote work-life balance

It is a known fact that remote work blurs boundaries between personal life and work. Thus, the right work-life balance is very important for the productivity of your remote and distributed teams, especially if they work in different time zones.

Managers and employees need to work together to establish clear boundaries between work and personal life:

  • Make regular breaks
  • Avoid performing tasks during non-working hours
  • Schedule meetings that will suit employees in all time zones
  • Avoid sending work-related emails or messages outside of designated work hours
  • Encourage to set "busy" or "offline" status in business messenger during non-working hours
  • Demonstrate respect to employees' personal time
  • Provide resources and support for managing stress and maintaining mental well-being

Measure results rather than time

Output is the only way to measure progress. When you focus on the time your employees spend at their desks this will demotivate your team and significantly decrease their efficiency. A sizeable component of performance management is monitoring productivity rather than time spent at the desk. Thus, trust your employees and track their results.

Do not forget about proper training

Training for remote teams differs from the in-office one. First of all, you need to educate them on how to work remotely, use specific tools and maintain work-life balance. Then you need to work on the on-boarding training for new employees who will join your remote team. This is one of the most important aspects as without proper training your employees will not become successful and productive

Remote training is usually delivered through virtual classes, online courses, podcasts, webinars, and other e-learning tools. You can also schedule virtual meetings for group training or provide it asynchronously by sharing learning material and discussing the progress individually with each team member.

Foster positive work environment

A positive work environment will help to deal with demotivation and disengaged staff. With hybrid and remote working it is not always obvious when your team members start feeling demotivated. This directly impacts the result, but it is hard to say when exactly your team became disengaged. Thus, the best strategy is to prevent these things from happening:

  • Talk to your team
  • Provide growth opportunities
  • Lead by example
  • Set clear goals

Remember, building a strong remote team takes time and effort. By following our tips on how to master remote collaboration, you can create an environment where negative behavior is discouraged, and collaboration flourishes.