Online Work Teams: The New Normal
Technology has been enabling people to gain access to different ways of interacting and working for a while now. But in 2020, online work proved itself to be the safest way of working, both health-wise and business-wise.
Sharing a workspace?
The health crisis of 2020 kick-started a global switch to online work. Companies that normally shared a physical workspace started organizing into online work teams and communicating exclusively online. For many of them, this came with the realization that remote work allowed their employees to deliver better results more quickly and more independently. For others, it showed the potential of hiring people from different geographic locations and very possibly different time zones. Additionally, it proved that inhabiting the same virtual space can be just as effective as sharing an office, allowing employees to link up and meet for work with no time spent on a daily commute.
As a result, many businesses recognize the benefits online teamwork holds for their work processes and have decided to switch to remote work either partially or fully in their future operations.
Jumping the hurdles of online work
However, adapting to the new normal of working in online teams does not come without its catches. For a team set in its ways of being able to communicate and manage the work of its members in person, transitioning to virtual work can include some hurdles that come with the territory of the online medium:
- Motivation issues - without the cohesion of a shared physical workspace, team members can start to feel scattered and disconnected from their virtual co-workers. This hurdle can be overcome with team building tools and ideas that will motivate your virtual personnel to do its best work.
- Communication issues - virtual teams, especially new ones, tend to suffer from communication overload, whether in terms of the sheer amount of emails and notifications, or in terms of issues with setting up virtual meetings. These issues can be resolved by promoting internal communications in a virtual office.
Tools that allow online working
There is a myriad of tools available to you online, but how you use them will either guarantee a smooth-sailing project or turn your processes into a nightmare. Contact us if you want to get a second opinion on the tools you are currently using and want ideas about better collaboration tools that fit your company’s specific needs.
8 quick tips for a successful virtual team
Whether you plan to continue working remotely or keep online work processes in mind as a safeguard against potential future crises, here are eight quick tips to help set up your virtual team for success:
- Hold a personalized initial meeting to clearly set out expectations and objectives
- Establish some basic guidelines for work and relations from the outset
- Establish common and realistic goals
- Maintain active communication at all levels and channels of the team
- Facilitate a feedback process that helps improve work quality
- Implement motivation strategies that help humanize the virtual medium and strengthen teamwork
- Hold virtual meetings with the whole team to strengthen cohesion and synergy
- Offer ergonomic guidance to look out for the health and well-being of the team
Watch this interview where our team talks with Collaboration Superpowers about the benefits, challenges and strategies to managing global teams: