In the wake of recent weeks we have transmitted to working from home. During these times many companies are thinking about ways to improve collaboration and maintain team cohesion. In order to stay connected with your team it’s time to navigate new ways to enhance communication and connection with colleagues we no longer see in-person every day.
A good piece of advice would be to set up virtual activities and new creative ways of communication that can help you stay connected during social distancing. For example, this can include popular activities such as morning coffee chats or weekly feedback meetings.
Check out our suggestions on how to better connect with your team while working from home.
Establish effective communication
It’s time to ramp-up communication within your team. This is going to help keep your team more focused and productive, as well as foster your coworkers emotional well-being. Schedule regular team meetings and don’t forget about personal check-ins.
Discuss with your team the best ways to communicate when they have questions or doubts, or how they prefer to provide the feedback, share results or celebrate success.
For this purpose you can leverage technology and use various apps to make the communication process easier. Such platforms will help you to make communication more personal, limiting emails and instead using more video calls.
Communication apps and software for working from home include:
- Google Hangouts
Socialize during virtual coffee breaks or team lunches
Interaction matters more than ever! Although we can’t socialize with coworkers in-person, you can establish individual coffee chats with each member of the team and schedule a team lunch every week.
Another great idea would be to introduce a virtual room where coworkers can hang out and unwind. People can use it for a “watercooler chat” over a cup of coffee, sharing personal news and achievements, or talking about the ways of adaptation to the current situation. It’s a great place to drop by simply to say hi and check how everybody is doing.
Create a Slack channel to simply share some funny images and videos. Inject humor into your daily routine and try to maintain a healthy and positive working environment.
Run weekly team meetings
In order to stay connected with coworkers and maintain a sense of community you can introduce weekly team meetings. This will help your team members stay updated and on top of company priorities. It is going to help them tackle their feelings of being disconnected and the stress caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.
You can discuss a lot of topics during such meetings. For instance, you can ask each team member to share accomplishments and challenges they are currently facing. Ask them what’s working and what’s not, and let them share their concerns. Discuss working from home obstacles and how they can be overcome.
Don’t forget to share the updates about your company, team, or even events unfolding in the outside world. This will help your team stay informed and eliminate the reasons for panic.
Collaborate in real time
Another great way to foster your team connectivity is by working together on the projects or presentations in real time. This can be a work-related project or some activity created just for fun, like writing a movie script or rewriting a popular TV-show.
You can do it on Google spreadsheets and see your coworker making edits in real time. Another tool you can use for real-time cooperation is Zoho. Similar to Google spreadsheets, it allows users to create online documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and lets you invite others to review and edit them. You can even create groups and easily assign and manage tasks.
Getting used to working remotely might be more or less challenging for each member of your team. For that reason, now is the time to think about the effectiveness of communication within your team and introduce new ways to help your coworkers stay connected and productive.
Simple things like virtual coffee chats, team meetings and collaboration on projects in real time may help a lot. Stay connected and stay safe!
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