Businesses now have the opportunity to access talent from different parts of the world in order to scale operations. This equips them to maximize the returns on investment while facing competition head-on. 

The best way to go forward is to manage a remote team. This is not an easy process, as it involves a great deal of learning for all parties involved. The right amount of team engagement will go a long way in increasing work from home productivity, if that is the model you are following. To increase productivity, remote teams require maintenance and effort. Here are some ways you can ensure employee engagement. 

Tips to Increase Productivity for Your Remote Team

Whether you are looking to ensure employee happiness or reduce employee turn rate, there are a few things you can do.

Avoid Micromanagement

While walking up to your team’s desk and asking them questions in an office environment works, posing the same questions regularly on Slack is a form of micromanagement. You take up their time, and constantly switching between the task and replying to you could affect their focus.

Always remember that open communication is not the same as intrusive micromanagement tactics.

Ask your team member their preferred frequency of updates, and hold meetings according to a pre-decided schedule. This lets your team plan their work around the meeting and saves you the trouble of having to check in every hour and disrupting their work process.

Collaboration Tools are Important

Collaboration tools can make managing tasks easier. It allows you to track progress while letting your remote workers update regularly and keep reminders for tasks that are due. 

Platforms like Miro, Teamwork, and Monday allow you to plan out work well in advance, avoiding any surprises. 

Zoom and Hangouts are great options for communicating directly with the teams, as long as you do not use them too frequently and interrupt the workflow.

Help Your Remote Teams Create a Good Work From Home Environment

While organisations take a lot of time and effort to create a good work environment in their offices, this should be extended to work from home employees and teams in remote locations, too.

Here are some work from home tips you can follow

  • Invest in equipment like Autonomous Standing Desks or monitors that give a professional setting to your remote teams’ employees. This allows them to focus on the task without any distractions.
  • Help your employees set up their home office well by giving them guidelines and tips. This might be as simple as finding a room with the right ventilation and lighting. 

Reduce the Load of Video Conferences

Although Zoom and Hangouts meetings are a part of everyone’s life, they might not always be great. Hopping from one Zoom conference to another can create a great deal of Zoom fatigue, forcing employees to always be present. This is extremely mentally taxing, leading to lower productivity throughout the day.

There are a lot of ways to reduce this fatigue and improve employee happiness, thereby giving you better results.

  • Limit the number of meetings per day.
  • Plan your meetings well in advance.
  • Avoid long Zoom meetings
  • Search for other means of communication
    • Sharing of information can be done via emails or presentations
    • Audio meetings work just as well for updates. This can reduce Zoom fatigue.
    • Pre-recorded presentations that can be viewed at each person’s pace, allowing them to be attentive when they are watching.

Ask for and Give Feedback

An OfficeVibe study shows that 40 percent of workers are disengaged when they do not get feedback. If you want your remote team to be invested in a project, you have to know what changes you need to make. As a leader, you have the responsibility of making sure everything contributes to a better work environment.

Employee feedback is crucial for them to understand what is expected, especially in remote teams. This helps your remote teams identify their strengths and weaknesses, thereby prompting continuous growth. 

This goes both ways, though. Prompt your remote teams to give you feedback about what is working for them and what is not. This allows you to stay attuned to their needs.

Open Communication

Open communication is at the heart of every team’s productivity. Make sure you constantly catch up with your employees. They must have a clear idea as to what is expected of them.

This avoids undue confusion and ensures that there is no need for multiple changes and corrections in the long run. 

This also opens up channels for employees to communicate with you, keeping you in the loop. They will feel more open to suggesting more effective solutions, pointing out any flaws or vulnerabilities in the existing solution, and working together to get the best possible solutions to any challenges.

Time Tracking

It is important to keep track of time when working on projects, especially time-critical tasks. Maintaining a holistic report of the time needed for each task, the percentage of tasks completed, and the time required to complete the rest of the tasks can be helpful. 

This keeps the team accountable and helps everyone come up with a complete schedule. This works for sales teams as well and allows you to compare metrics so that the teams can also improve performance.

Develop Your Remote Teams for Better Productivity

Learning and experimenting to find the best practices for your remote team can go a long way in keeping your employees happy. Try to improve the remote setup continuously and attend digital work events to get new ideas. Developing your remote teams’ productivity gives you access to a wide pool of talent. This helps your teams figure out a schedule and keep to it, improving their focus and giving them more time to spend on tasks.

Focus on keeping your remote teams happy and help them set up their work from home environments for better results and happier working conditions. In the long run, every team is going to appreciate strong leadership and clear communication.