Some companies do not have virtual teams because they feel like it will be hard to keep them productive; however more people are working virtually now than ever before. There are ways to keep the virtual team productive. Many companies even find that they are able to hit goals faster due to teams working in a virtual environment.
The first thing people should do when working with virtual teams is communicating the standards and set the tone for the work environment. People have to know what is expected of them in order to perform at their maximum ability.
Communication among the Team
It is a great idea to create an online space where virtual team members can get to know one another on a more personal basis and find out how they all connect with the team. Spotlighting certain team members is another way to create excellent business culture. Newsletters are another excellent way to continue communication within the team. Many business owners partner new team members with more experienced team members. This way the new and existing team member can get to know one another, build a working relationship, and learn from one another.
Since communication is a huge part of any team, communication standards should be addressed from the beginning. Business owners must tell everyone they hire the best ways to communicate with them and with others. This way the communication links will be consistent and everyone will know where to go for information.
In Person Meetings
Although the team may work virtually many business owners invest by having in-person meetings once or twice a year. This is another way for the virtual team to be able to connect on a more personal basis. It may cost more but it still helps to build team morale.
One standard that should be created is having virtual meetings on the same day and time each week. By having these meetings the team will know how everyone is doing on tasks, what is expected and will have the opportunity to see how working together truly helps to make progress. Since all members of the team will be meeting it is important to have overlapping hours that will work with everyone’s schedule. This way everyone will be able to attend a meeting. A meeting that allows for everyone to be on video is ideal. Many people associate being able to see someone as having more of a connection.
Anyone who has ever worked from home can understand how time can be fleeting. It is a great idea to add some form of time tracker to the daily activities. By keeping up with the time it takes to complete certain tasks everyone can ensure that they are making the best use of their time.
All of these things working together help virtual teams to be the best they can be. They also help to create better team morale. Everyone enjoys the feeling of knowing that they are a part of something. By having all of these keys in place the turnover rate of an organization usually decreases.