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How to achieve high productivity with remote teams?

“Focus on being productive instead of busy.”

In 2021 working from home is the new normal. Businesses are now taking advantage of remote work and it’s becoming more convenient for most of us, as now it is easier to manage one’s time and have an actual work-life balance. And if during the ongoing pandemic the massive transition to remote work for a lot of businesses was a necessity, then now the majority of those businesses prefer to continue working from home even post-pandemic. 

Here are a few ways to achieve high productivity with remote teams-

1. Set clear goals for the remote team

One of the most important remote work productivity tips is setting clear goals for one’s team. Even though working from home seems to give greater freedom, there’s no doubt that it also leaves room to get out of focus. That’s why one’s team members need to have a clear direction from the manager in order to be productive. All remote workers have to meet and exceed their goals, and if there’s not much direction from the manager, it gets harder to complete the work. One must start with setting clear goals and rules, with specific metrics, timelines, and check-ins.

 Here are some great ways to set clear goals for your team members: create a board of tasks, give specific instructions, set milestones, and track the progress.

2. Use the right tools for communication

Until last February, most people only had Skype or Facetime installed on our devices. But when the COVID-19 hit, everyone became well-versed in video calls. Pandemic has made many people become more familiar with technology and the way in which everyone communicates has changed a lot since that.  Now there are more programs and collaboration software to choose from and need to learn how to use them effectively.

Communication and collaboration technology is helping to make working remotely so much easier, which makes it possible for companies to always stay connected with the team. Team messaging and video conferencing help employees to collaborate and communicate regardless of physical location and break down geographical and cultural barriers and companies hire more people from across the globe.

The range of communication tools is huge, the most commonly used are Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts, and Slack. But there are many other communication tools out there on the market, that one can choose from – paid ones and free, for big companies and small teams. Pick the best option for the team and see if the team’s remote work productivity increases.

3. Accommodate Flexible Work Schedules

While pay and healthcare used to be the most important factors when choosing an employer, in 2021, people are looking for flexibility above other benefits like health care and extra pay. 

52% of workers would prefer a more flexible work model as opposed to their current one. 

-survey by McKinsey and Co.

People look for flexibility, work culture, and values, among other things. If your employees are allowed to work outside of the office, then it is counterproductive to assign a fixed schedule. Allowing your employees flexibility fosters clear communication and trust. So it’s better to accommodate flexible work schedules for one’s remote team.

4. Reward the right behaviours

Failure to introduce a clear outcome-focused system to reward work that is done remotely can lead to presentee-ism. Leaders can play an important role in motivating their employees by celebrating successes big or small and giving recognition and thanks for good work done.

5. Give people a voice

The first four steps will fall flat unless one implements a final initiative: giving employees a real, palpable channel to express what they think, feel, and experience. Top leaders should reflect the feedback they receive and stay in true dialogue (not monologue) with their direct reports.

Conclusion

 The past year has taught us that almost all businesses can shift to remote work. If one will try implementing these tips, he/ she is more likely to end up with a productive and happy remote team. 

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