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7 Ways to Encourage Communication Through Remote Working

7 Ways to Encourage Communication Through Remote Working

The Coronavirus pandemic has reshaped the traditional way of working. With many companies adopting remote working, communication has become one of the most significant challenges affecting productivity. Fortunately, there’s so much you could do to encourage remote team collaboration and interpersonal communication.

Let’s take a look at several ways to promote communication through remote working.

Adopt Innovative Ways of Communication

As your team settles into working remotely, it would help to invest in tools that ease interpersonal communication. While traditional tools like emails and calls will suffice, they do not give your remote workers the sense of team collaboration.

Luckily, investing in other alternatives like shared cloud storage, instant messaging apps, or video chat applications can help you ease team communication. But not all communication tools are suitable for everyone. Different team members could have different personalities.

For that reason, it would help to identify your team’s needs and get a solution that will solve just that. If, for instance, you have shy team members, you may want to introduce Polls on Slack to encourage their contribution through polling and consequently help them feel like part of the team.

Set Clear Expectations

Many employers and managers make the mistake of assuming that workers understand their expectations when working remotely. To reduce frustrations, ensure you clearly outline expectations around working hours, meeting times, and output right from the onset.

However, it would be best for employers and team managers to encourage workers to work in their most productive hours, especially if the nature of work allows it. For example, a worker could prefer working in the early mornings while another may choose late evenings.

Prioritize Video Calls

Remote working eliminates interpersonal interaction, which can have a mental and emotional impact on your workforce. Thanks to technology, there is a solution to this problem.

By replacing in-person interactions with virtual meetings, you could give your team a sense of in-person interaction. There are many available options that your company could make use of to achieve video communication.

Build Comradeship by Allowing Out-Of-Work Talk

In a typical office setting, workers get to mingle and engage in out-of-work talk, which helps relieve stress and create bonds between employees. The same case should apply for remote working.

Ensure that you give your team an avenue to discuss non-work stuff. That way, team members will understand how everyone is coping and could step in to help whenever possible.

Hold Daily Meetings

It would be best to host daily meetings, preferably video meetings, to keep members communicating and having a team spirit. You or the team manager can use these meetings to give updates while the employees air their views and work concerns. The result?  You’ll get a general overview of your team’s concerns and come up with ways to address them.

Watch Your Tone

During in-person communication, your body language plays an essential role in communication. It’s imperative to understand that your tone of communication in writing or over video may not be the same as in person-to-person communication.

For example, when communicating in writing, exclamation marks may convey a different message from what was intended. Similarly, single words answers could feel cold and rude.

Encourage Discussion and Feedback

Always encourage your remote workers to ask questions and give feedback. That said, you must ensure that you are approachable and always ready to answer questions. This will ensure that your employees get a clear understanding of the expectations, which minimizes the room for errors.

Final Words

Communication is critical in any business environment. By incorporating the ideas highlighted in this post, your organization can significantly improve its remote work communication.

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by Dirk DeBie // Contributor to Businessing Magazine.

Opinions expressed by contributors are their own.