This is a business post by Ellie Jo.
Creating a team that is balanced, diversified, and united has always been one of the greatest goals for entrepreneurs. After all, often, productivity, efficiency, and success stem from how good and in harmony your teams are. And, many entrepreneurs are not wrong in thinking that your human resources and teams are the greatest asset to count on.
However, creating a united and efficient team has always been a great challenge for business owners – and it has never been as demanding as it is today. Indeed, the pandemic and its consequences have filed a spike in remote working. And, an increasing number of people have launched virtual businesses. Of course, this lifestyle has some benefits that are impossible to ignore, but there are also some downsides that have made the life of entrepreneurs harder.
At the same time, it has never been as important as today to create a united and strong team. Here are some suggestions that you can put in place today to grow and empower your remote teams.
Host Online Events
One of the best ways to engage with your employees is to host events. Events allow you to see each other outside of strict work settings and understand more about each other’s lifestyle and personality. Of course, at the moment, events are not an option for anybody, and they are likely to remain off-limits for a few months to come.
Nonetheless, technology, this time, is on the side of entrepreneurs! You can host online events for networking or casual meetings. This is an excellent opportunity to engage with your employees and encourage them to build valuable relationships outside of professional settings.
Ask for Feedback
It is hard for remote employees to feel included and valued. However, in most cases, asking for feedback can help. Sending out a simple survey or asking directly what their idea about a project is can help them feel more empowered – and an active part in the decision-making process! It is important not to underestimate how important it is for your employees to feel supported and recognized.
Deliver Branded Care Packages and Accessories
The technological developments – especially the ones that have taken place over the past year – have made it possible to interact on a more personal level with family, friends, and employees. However, sometimes, technology cannot replace a physical gesture!
If you are looking to engage with your employees, consider sending out custom gear or items with your company logo. Make sure you are selecting useful items that your employees need – and put them together in a specially-made care package! It is an excellent way to inspire gratitude and trust – especially in today’s historical moment. And, you can find items for any taste, from sustainable options to high-tech ones!
Host Virtual Friday Happy Hours
Oh, Friday! It’s always the day everyone is waiting for – even when working online! Indeed, often the lines of work and life balance get blurred when working from the sofa. Hosting a virtual happy hour, for example, at the end of the week, is a great way to give your teams something to look forward to. And, once work is done, they can use some extra time to kick back, share stories, and relax with their colleagues and friends.
Introduce a Virtual Employee Recognition Program
Remote work is still hard work! And employees who are navigating the consequences of the pandemic while also working hard for their careers to progress should be recognized! While you might be extremely busy and under pressure during these months, it is also important to recognize a job or task well done or award a dedicated employee. You can do all this and more virtually by introducing an employee recognition program. You might share who the winner is via a weekly newsletter or social media post.
Host Competitions and Contests To Keep Employees Engaged
Contests are a great way to regain the engagement of team members or employees that are now working remotely. Contests can be close to the nature of your business, and you don’t have to do much more aside from launching a challenge and deciding on a prize.
For example, in the case of hospitality businesses that are waiting to reopen the doors, you might launch a “best Sunday breakfast” or “best romantic dinner/2 contest and get your employees to post their works on a Facebook group. A little healthy competition can keep their skills sharp and their interest engaged.
Use Social Media to Your Advantage
Social media channels are no longer a place where you can only share something that crosses your mind. Understanding how to leverage their potential is crucial! So, you might decide to host lives, create reels, and offer employees the chance to participate in a Q&A session. If you decide to answer your employees’ questions yourself, you’ll find out that your employees are eager to get to know their bosses more!
Encourage Events Such As “Show & Learn”
Everyone has a unique skill to teach – and there is most likely someone in your team who needs that skill! Make sure to host events, so the people in your team have the chance to teach others a unique ability. And, some of your employees can refine their skillset and have access to positions that are more suitable for their interests. These events can easily be hosted online in the form of seminars – or as quick tutorials on YouTube or Instagram. Make sure you pick your channels of communication wisely!
Encourage Casual Chats Between Employees
Of course, during working hours, the communication is all about the important tasks and responsibilities that your employees have to address. However, it is also crucial for everyone to create valuable relationships with those around them. You can encourage casual conversations by allowing your employees to create a virtual break room. Make sure there is also a channel that they can use solely for their conversation – whether that is a Whatsapp or Telegram group.
Invest in Remote Team Building Activities
Team building has always been extremely important for team members to grow together and get to know each other better. While it has become more difficult to host certain team-building activities, you can still create some unique experience – virtually! Options might include virtual escape rooms and quizzes. These options are often more affordable than real events and still get everyone involved!