According to Buffer, the top 3 biggest struggles that people have with working remotely are unplugging from work, loneliness, and communication.
Even though your business is virtual, your team is human. The relationships and culture that you create throughout your business are vital in how you succeed.
Your virtual team has a life outside of work. They have families, pets, hobbies, great days, and not so happy moments.
Cultivating a team culture that promotes inclusiveness, communication, and trust between one another will shine through in all aspects of your business.
Take a moment and analyze your virtual team culture. Be honest with yourself:
- How do you make your team feel appreciated?
- How do you make your team feel valued?
- How do you make your team feel included in your vision?
If you are coming up short on answers, it is time to reconsider what needs to happen in your business. It is time to create the thriving team culture of your dreams.
Here are three questions to consider when creating the perfect workplace culture for your virtual team:
Q1: How Does My Team Communicate With Each Other?
Think about the communication software and tools your business uses daily. Are they all work and no play?
One of the biggest challenges in remote work is not having face to face human interaction that you usually get in an office setting.
Virtual or nonvirtual, a team works better together when they feel comfortable with each other. Providing your team the opportunity to build relationships in a virtual office diminishes the feeling of loneliness in remote work. Sharing funny stories, big wins, and even loses builds trust and friendship amongst your virtual team.
Strictly work-related communication channels are essential for getting things done. Setting up other communication avenues for your team to be able to chat about something other than work will provide the family-feeling that your virtual team is missing.
Here at Your Online Team, we have designated watercooler channels on Slack solely for sharing what’s happening in each other’s lives. We also send Fun Friday questions every week to get to know each other on a more personal level.
What steps are you taking to foster great relationships throughout your team?
Q2: What Do I Do To Celebrate My Team?
Celebrate good times, c’mon! Whether it’s a big company win or a team member’s birthday, how does your team celebrate?
Rewards make all the hard work worth it. Otherwise, would anyone try something difficult if they were not getting anything out of it?
Celebrating the small things, such as birthdays, mean just as much as celebrating the big things, such as launching a brand new course. You can reward in many different ways – a simple “great job!” can go a long way.
A few ideas for celebrating your team:
- Birthday/Work Anniversary cards or gifts
- A day off
- Cash bonus
- Amazon gift cards
- Employee spotlight
- Weekly shout outs
When your team feels appreciated, you all succeed. We highly recommend sending out anonymous ‘Happiness Surveys’ to measure what you are doing well and where you could improve.
How does your virtual team feel about being apart of your online business?
Q3: How Do I Communicate With My Team?
Bringing up an issue to your boss can be very intimidating, especially when you only have an online relationship. An open door communication policy can be a game-changer for your team. This type of communication not only allows for your team to get help but also makes space for feedback and new ideas.
You do not have to become best friends with every member of your team, but you should make an effort to get to know them. Host weekly Zoom calls where they have the opportunity to speak to you directly about any issues or ask questions. Participate in the watercooler channels and share fun things about yourself, so your team can know you better too.
What systems do you have in place for your team to speak directly to you?
How Can I Have a Thriving Team Culture in My Business?
Creating a happy, thriving team starts with you. Providing the space to build relationships throughout a virtual office cultivates growth and success. The small wins are just as important as the big wins, so make sure to celebrate them all.
Acknowledging birthdays and work anniversaries is a simple way to make your team feel appreciated. Promoting open communication by finding time to communicate with your team directly helps build a solid foundation of trust in your online workspace.
A team that thrives together is a team that succeeds together. If you are ready to design a thriving team culture that is perfect for your business, contact us today!