According to Forbes, 97% of executives and employees believe that a lack of alignment within a team impacts the outcome of a task. In fact, if you want to talk about alignment, there are specifically three kinds of ‘distance’ that impact remote collaboration:
This one is obvious. The first thought that comes to your mind when you talk about remote teams is the physical and geographic distance between you and them.
Video conferencing and project management tools have worked wonders to help clients and vendors close this gap.
There are always differences in the modus operandi and operational procedures between different teams regardless of whether they are across the country or across the world.
A strong SOP protocol can help offset any operational differences you and your remote team may experience
Every company has a unique culture. These differences are compounded when you are dealing with individuals halfway across the world. The language, work ethic, sensibilities and values of your remote workers may be very different from yours.
Active communication, empathy and team-building efforts can work towards bridging ‘affinity’ differences between your in-house and remote teams.
It is common knowledge today that instead of hiring full time in-house employees, companies can cut costs and hire specialist remote teams at a much lower price point. However, keeping these teams productive, that’s a different story altogether. Here’s what worked for us these part ten years:
1. Set communication norms
Communication is especially important when dealing with a remote team. If your current communication system isn’t effective, create a new system that establishes accountability and clear communication.
2. Create a unified culture
Your teams need to be trained to understand that there is a strong company culture that encourages mutual respect, strong communication and shared values.
3. Build Rapport
Building rapport is essential among remote teams. This is what keeps your team members motivated even when you aren’t breathing down their necks. Building rapport with your remote team helps to boost morale, builds trust and motivates the team to stay productive. Providing constructive critique is also easier when you already have positive rapport going with your remote teams!
4. Shared Meeting Rhythms
Religiously following predefined meeting and reporting rhythms can seem like a tedious undertaking. Allowing for opportunities to share challenges, report solutions celebrate successful milestones and think collaboratively can help cultivate a common mindset and lay a great foundation for operational success. In our experience, when remote workers feel like they are a part of your company, they will do everything in their power to go the extra mile and help you achieve your business goals.