Managing a business takes a lot of ingenuity and drive, no matter what kind of industry you’re in. And the COVID-19 pandemic has only added to that, which is why it’s crucial that your business takes a critical look at your needs (both current future) to help keep things afloat. While smaller businesses often rely on government programs like SBA express bridge loans and the Main Street Business Lending Program to stay in business during these troubled times, larger companies can often avoid these types of loans by making internal changes, giving them a better chance of getting things under control without the use of external sources of funding.
Once you’ve gotten your finances under control, you can start thinking about putting together a remote team. Not only do you have to be extremely focused and dedicated, but you also have to be great at employee relations in order to ensure your team can go remote seamlessly. It can be tricky to maintain good communication with employees and keep everyone on the same page. Finding the right people for the job, if needed, and learning how to keep them motivated when there’s no office environment can be done; it just takes a little creativity. Knowing what mistakes to avoid will help you keep the process smooth.
One of the keys to putting together a team that works well from a distance is learning how to keep communication organized and consistent. When everyone has the same guidelines and is able to share information without roadblocks, work is handled more efficiently and without mistakes. It’s also a good idea to still hold meetings with your team since face-to-face conversations won’t be possible. You can utilize a video chat service that will help connect everyone on a regular basis.
Here are some great tips on how to hire and manage a stellar remote team for your business.
Find the right people
There has to be a certain element of trust involved when you put together a remote team for a project. Not only do they need to be able to work efficiently without the benefit of a shared office environment, but they also need to establish a routine and know how to manage their time wisely. When you’re ready to hire, look for individuals who are able to work from home. You can find tons of qualified candidates on job platforms, whether you’re looking for professionals in web development, customer service, writing, or other remote work.
When hiring, or even having your established teams work together apart, have a conversation about how they plan to get their work done. What’s their schedule like? In some cases, remote workers are able to spend time on their projects well outside of office hours, and if this is the case, you’ll want to make sure you have a plan for them to turn in their work.
Keep communication clear
It can be challenging to keep everyone on the same page, especially when you have a team of individuals who work far away from the central hub of your business. Yet, it’s essential to make sure every team member understands your needs and how they can work together on projects. When holding call meetings, consider using a transcription service to take notes so that all pertinent information will be accessible to everyone who was there and to those who couldn’t attend. This is a great alternative to hiring someone to take notes since an automatic speech-to-text program can be pretty budget-friendly, with some services starting at 10 cents per minute.
Hold regular meetings
You may not be able to have an in-person meeting with your employees, but you can certainly invite everyone to regularly talk about any projects, concerns, or changes within the company so that everyone is informed. Conference calls have been given an update with the technology we now have; video chat apps have made it easier than ever to communicate with one another using real-time videos, and it can be highly beneficial for your employees to have that face time with you and their coworkers.
The moment a little chaos is introduced to a remote situation, everything falls apart. Because you can’t have everyone together in one room, it’s essential that you keep things organized at all times to prevent major issues. Utilize online tools that will help each employee stay organized and keep productivity a priority. The key here is to remain consistent since confusion can single-handedly ruin a good remote working environment.
Creating and managing a suddenly remote team for your business takes time, patience, and organization, so think carefully about your strategy before implementing any tools. Remember that communication is a major element and that with the right choices, you can save money and keep your business running smoothly throughout, and beyond, the pandemic.
Written by guest contributor, Tina Martin