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A guide for managers to use remote working teams effectively / How to achieve high productivity with remote teams.

We are all in the same storm but not in the same boat.

We all have been a part of a working environment where we did not pay much attention to the backgrounds of our employees or colleagues. The moment we entered our offices, we all were considered equal and the same. But what Covid-19 did was that it took work right into everybody’s homes. This in turn made all the inequalities and inequities among the workforce more visible than ever. Covid-19 brought a paradigm shift in the whole Human resources industry. Majority of the companies went completely remote. 

Now, there were people in the workforce who were enjoying remote working and then there were those who were facing a lot of problems while working remotely.

This storm of Covid-19 shook every employee working at a managerial level. It became very difficult to manage teams and employees. All the managers were left with no choice but to weather this storm in a good and effective manner. While some figured out solutions, others are still struggling and looking out for some tips and solutions.

Well, here are some tips and tricks for managers to use remote working teams effectively and increase productivity. 

  1. Engagement with purpose 

It is vital for every manager to engage with their team members. But the moment anybody talks about engagement at a workplace, it is nothing but meetings and follow ups.

Well, Engagement with purpose does not necessarily mean Google meets or Zoom calls. Managers should focus on having one-on- one conversations with their team members. You are not necessarily required to get all the insights about their personal lives, but try talking to them in a concerned way rather than just being formal.

This will definitely help all the managers to have a better connection with their team members. And looking at it from a team member’s point of view, they will feel a sense of belongingness and will feel that they matter.

  1. Set standards and Boundaries 

When it comes to working from home, it is very important that we set certain standards and boundaries about work and work related flexibility.

With setting standards and boundaries, another thing which is very important is that the managers should be able to articulate it well enough. Be clear on the way you would like to work and how much flexibility are you willing to offer to your teammates. 

Communicate with your team members and be open for any new idea or any other approach they would like to suggest to follow the same standards, which in turn would better suit them as a team. The focus should be on productivity but not with a rigid approach.

  1. Establish Trust 

This may sound very cliché but it is considered as the best way to manage a team effectively. If we talk about the pre-covid-19 era, all of us worked under the same roof and could be seen very easily. It was very easy for any manager to know whether his/her team is working effectively or not. But after this huge paradigm shift in the way of working, a lot of things were becoming difficult to manage. 

And to deal with this difficulty, it is very important for managers to trust their team members. The lack of visibility does not necessarily mean having regular calls and check-ins.  

It will only reduce the productivity of your team members.

Define the procedure and some set of rules and regulations. Establish a relationship with your team members which will help you to establish trust.

  1. Be honest and Create a culture of empathy 

Creating a culture of empathy is very important, especially in the times of Covid-19. When you are a manager, you are also a leader, a person who is looked upon. It becomes your responsibility to create a culture of empathy and a culture where no one is sacred to be honest.

Now in creating such a culture within your team, you are also required to be honest. Tell them about your experiences or that you also feel stressed out, or you also need a time off. This will help your team members to be honest with you and also it will help them to feel a sense of empathy. 

It is all about the little things. When you are working remotely, all these little things can work like magic for your team members or your employees. Let them know that they are a vital part of your team or organisation; not just as a resource but as a human being.

Conclusion

If we continue doing HR the way we’ve been doing, then none of us would have a job: Smita Pillai, Zendesk. 

Remote working came as a really big challenge and created a lot of opportunities at the same time. Hence, an aspect which came into picture with remote working is the transformation the HR has gone through. HR was one of the most important pillars which helped companies in managing their workforce. It made us realize that we can save a lot from a spending point of view and we can hire people from across the globe by just working remotely.

Well, to conclude, the challenges which came along were not that easy to manage, and hence made things even more difficult. But with time, and with digital transformations, we were able to find solutions and manage things effectively. 

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