Do you think that a simple Zoom meeting is enough for your remote teams? Our article on ‘The Art of Workplace Communication’ could make you reconsider your stance, especially since 86% of executives and employees believe that lack of communication is the top cause of workplace failure. Without effective workplace communication strategies, employees may find it difficult to complete daily tasks and meet deadlines.
Now that the remote work setup is here to stay, it’s time to streamline your workplace communication strategies through these 5 top tips:
1. Choose the right internal communications platform
If you want your remote team to thrive, you must communicate beyond e-mails.
Thankfully, with the rise of the digital age organizations have plenty of messaging and conferencing tools to choose from. For example, your company could benefit from Microsoft Office suite bundles, which include video conferencing platform Microsoft Teams and common software programs for work. Another option is Google Workspace, which is starting to overtake Microsoft in this area since employees that use Gmail have access to productivity tools and Google Meets for free!
2. Set guidelines for workplace communication
Even with the right communication tools, your team needs to learn how to use them in the right manner.
Rules are crucial. Maryville University highlights that managing corporate communication processes is a big responsibility for organizations that want productive and happy employees. Since the remote work setup can make internal communications tricky, your organization will need managers who can oversee your corporate communication channels. These individuals will designate tools and proper schedules for communication, so that workers from varied time zones can work together.
3. Create a feedback culture for remote teams
Not sure if your communication practices are effective? Make some room for improvement by accepting feedback from your remote teams.
Instead of merely doing annual surveys, Carrie McKeegan from Greenback Expat Tax Services recommends that leaders and managers collect feedback from employees on a regular basis. While some comments may sting, it’s important that an organization listens to the expertise and opinions of their workers. When a company accepts and acts on feedback regularly, employees will also learn how to communicate with trust and openness. Communication is a collaborative effort between all members of your team.
4. Schedule regular check-ins with everyone
Aside from conducting regular feedback sessions, it’s important to make room for check-ins with each remote employee. Many remote employees may feel disconnected from their teams with the lack of face-to-face interactions. If you don’t make room for small talk, you’ll fail to build rapport with your remote team members. To learn about their work problems, motivations, and preferences, try to get to know them a little better. Quick weekly standup meetings or even the occasional lunch in-person are both excellent ways to build relationships with colleagues and direct reports.
5. Make time for fun activities
Happy people are happy employees, but all work and no play make employees unhappy. While it can be tough to squeeze in regular feedback sessions and meetings, your organization also needs to schedule fun remote team-building exercises.
You'll need to note though that the University of Sydney does not recommend forcing employees to take part in team-building interventions. The researchers recommend creating activities for specific teams or individuals that foster more collaboration or communication. By choosing the right participants, your remote team can play hard and work harder.
As organizations navigate remote and hybrid arrangements, effective communication remains integral to meeting goals and succeeding as a business. Instead of viewing the lack of more traditional interactions as a challenge, with the right tools and strategies your remote team can collaborate on projects and build solid working relationships with great rapport.