When you think about team building, remote work likely isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. But, it’s just as important as any one location for building a strong and successful team. No matter where your business is, or how your team might come together, creating a better bond will have the same positive effects on your company. So, how can you build a better remote team to work together?
Schedule Regular Calls
The great thing about working as a team remotely is that technology is so advanced. Scheduling a daily call to check in with each other is easier than ever: You can do it over the phone, through Skype, FaceTime, etc. Try to have these calls reflect both work, and a bit of your personal lives. It’s important to get to know your remote co-workers beyond the work you’re doing.
Icebreakers don’t have to be the old cliche one-liners used on dates and in awkward situations. Make a list of quality icebreakers, and start off every remote meeting with one, making sure everyone gets their answer in. You may be surprised at what people have to say, and you’re learning more about your team every single time.
Similarly to hosting daily calls, try hosting a Google Hangout one day a week where work is on the back-burner for a bit. Friday is a great day to do this, since everyone can be in ‘weekend mode’ already. By hosting a Hangout on a Friday afternoon, where you all can talk about your interests, plans for the weekend, etc., it’ll feel more like water-cooler talk, and can help to further build relationships and trust. You’ll likely find you look forward to these Hangouts week after week.
Meeting up once or twice a year can be extremely beneficial – even more beneficial if it’s just the remote team that meets up, and not the entire company. Whether it’s for work or specifically designed as a team-building ‘retreat,’ being face-to-face with your team is exceptionally important when possible, and can help to boost the trust you have for one another, even if you only see each other once a year.
As you can see, team building with a remote team is all about communication. The more a remote team can stay in touch with each other, the better. Thanks to technology, that’s easier than ever!