Are you going to be a remote manager? When you do not see your team in an office every day, some things have to be done slightly differently to make sure that communication and workflows are properly set up and still effective.
Here are our top five tips for remote management:
As a leader, make sure that you start by taking some time for self-reflection. Do you feel ready and able for the remote management task? If not, what do you need to do to feel ready? It also starts with your mindset: “If you believe it, others will feel it”: if you truly believe that it is possible to have a good collaboration also virtually, the others in your team will feel it too.
Find out not only what drives and motivates each individual in your team, but also what is standing in their way. Be personal and relatable. Don’t hesitate to share something from your life like a new hobby you started or a fun fact about your family, and actively listen to what your team members tell you about their lives. Ask questions – too many questions are usually better than too few; ask what is going on in the lives of your team members.
Set clear expectations on reachability during certain time slots and make sure the team schedule is understood by all. Ensure that everyone knows what is being communicated and how or through which channels it is being communicated.
Ask yourself and your team once in a while: do the logic of working together we have set ourselves still fit? Remember that nothing is set in stone and you can always change your approach to ensure effective workflows and communication across your remote team.
Set aside the day-to-day, and organize some set times for your team development. Depending on the topic, you can choose a different period of time and format (like a moderated workshop or even a quick team check-in, e.g. on a scale of 1-5 “how am I feeling right now?”, “how connected do I feel with the others in the team?”, “how do I feel we are working together?” etc.
The important thing is to have exchange opportunities not only about work content but also about relationships and how to best work together in the team. Set a clear understanding of everyone’s roles and tasks together with your team and discuss them regularly.
Asking everyone to activate their camera often helps in building trust as they can all see each other. You can also use video conferencing tools with breakout rooms (Zoom or MS Teams) and virtual flipcharts (Miro or Mural) in order to “translate” the analog room to the digital room, especially in a team workshop. Don’t underestimate the impact of interactive methods like GIFs or memes as well as online applications like Mentimeter for quick polls.
Would you like to feel even stronger supported in your first leadership role? Katrin also offers a new product to support first-time leaders even better: The First-Time Leaders Community. It includes a self-paced video training, regular workshops and exchange with peers, and optional individual coaching sessions. Learn more and sign up today if you think you can benefit from it!
photo by Lucie Greiner