Trust in Remote Teams: Breaking Free from Excessive Control

Leading and engaging your remote teams is crucial, and it’s worth considering how to achieve this effectively. In an ideal world, you want to foster a virtual environment that emulates the casual interaction we used to have when we could walk down the hallway or bump into each other in the cafeteria. As a leader, your role is to facilitate these connections and opportunities.

When it comes to work, it’s also important to make tasks as engaging as possible to keep your team motivated. This might be easier for some industries than others, but the challenge remains the same: how to keep the team engaged and motivated when working remotely. One way to do this is to foster a light-hearted atmosphere, like making jokes and having regular check-ins.

In terms of processes, we need to avoid being too rigid or bureaucratic. Of course, some rules are necessary, but it’s essential to trust your team members. There’s no need for them to check in every hour or notify you every time they take a lunch break, unless it’s required by the nature of their role. It’s about striking a balance. We need a set of processes that are sufficient to keep things organized but not so extensive that they become burdensome.

It’s also important to give credit where it’s due. Recognize and publicly praise those who excel. Encourage top performers to share their tips during team meetings, fostering a culture of shared learning.

Communication is key. Regular, positive messages can go a long way in making team members feel valued and supported. Rather than using messages as a means of surveillance, send out a friendly ‘good morning’ or a quick positive note. Using emojis or GIFs can add a bit of fun and personality to your messages, but remember to keep them work-appropriate. The goal is to make your remote communications feel more like friendly conversation than formal correspondence.