29 Apr Building an effective remote working culture
Currently your entire team might be operating from home, but what’s important right now is keeping the company culture consistent. Company culture is something that impacts every aspect of an organisation and it is no different while working remotely. Staying connected is crucial, as we implement effective approaches to work on a daily basis. According to Coso 77% of people working from home self-report higher productivity and 54% of people are less likely to take time off. Additionally, working from home boosts productivity by 13%, according to a study by Stanford University.
Many organisations would have been used to regular team building activities, general engagement and informal interactions. These are all moments that allow us to take a break, come together and interact with our colleagues and employees both inside and outside of specific projects. While it is inevitable that things are going to be different, here are some tips that will help you manage your workplace culture whilst working from home during these uncertain times:
1 ) Set Ground Rules
It can be helpful to set some ground rules to maintain a healthy work / life balance. Set your working hours and keep tracking them in order to ensure that you are working when you should and do not end up over working. In order to avoid burnout, consider using a timer and schedule work accordingly. At the same time, set goals for the work you are doing within that time. Identify the steps you need to take in order to achieve these goals and work them into your weekly routine. Keep reviewing your progress and fine tune your approach as you go.
2 ) Effective Communication
It’s harder to get to know what the rest of your team are up to when everyone is working remotely. In order to avoid confusion, be proactive in keeping your communication lines open, so that nobody feels lonely or left in the dark. Schedule daily huddles by conducting regular calls with the team to prioritise and resolve any issues that need urgent consideration. These daily meetings will help to deepen a sense of connection with your team. Set your expectations from the start and ask your team for their communication preferences – both in terms of timing and communicating methods (i.e. e-mail, instant messaging, video calls etc).
3 ) Keep Office Traditions Alive
All the informal conversations and interactions, office lunches / dinners, events are often beneficial to workplace culture, but how do you maintain this whilst working remotely? Creating opportunities for interaction using technologies like Zoom, Skype, Teams, Hangouts, TikTok etc can be helpful in conducting virtual jam sessions, fun events/challenges, virtual lunches or happy hours. Some ideas to make it fun can include coffee catch ups, online cooking classes, playing team games, etc.
4 ) Centralise Important Information
Stay updated with what your team members are looking for and prepare helpful tools for them in advance. Whether its recording video meetings to allow them to revisit what was discussed, and/or recording training / tutorials for those not familiar with new applications / communications tools. Document everything and make it available for all employees. This will keep your team informed, which will ensure better outcomes from remote working.
5 ) Lean Into Learning
Although we have no idea how long this crisis will last, it doesn’t have to disrupt our professional development. Show appreciation and gratitude to employees who are still managing to work productively during these uncertain times. Encourage your team to access online resources such as Skillshare, LinkedIn learning, etc, to develop skills that will aide their professional development. Most importantly try to stay positive and spread this positivity to team members.
Ultimately, the aim is to view all members of the team as the heart of the organisation whilst giving them the resources they need to be successful – whether this is in an office environment or remotely. Investing in a workplace culture which helps embrace and promote remote working will allow your company to grow as well as your employees to work in a manner that proves beneficial for their work / life balance.
Carefully considering equality, diversity and inclusion in the workplace is another great way to build a team that is engaged and more productive, even when working from home. Our EDI strategy guide provides you the tools needed to implement a more inclusive workplace culture, which should result in a team that is motivated to work collaboratively whether they are at home or in the office. So why not download it now and start your EDI Journey today!
Author: Sheetal Roy