Remote staffing and virtual teams have seen a dramatic rise in popularity over the past decade. Surprisingly, even during the course of the upcoming 2020 year experts are predicting that virtual & remote staff will become far commonplace & accepted as a part of the business than in the past — especially in organizations with a lot of tasks that don’t require a physical presence in the office.
A recent study found that a company can save over $10,000 annually when one hires remote staff. Findings also said that remote or virtual staff show a higher level of productivity, greater satisfaction rate, and not to mention access to a wider global talent pool. Despite these great findings, businesses and their consequent leaders still face many challenges when it comes to managing a global, remote team.
Communication- Communication is an important aspect of managing a virtual team or virtual staff. You need to be flexible and find ways to communicate in a way that works for everybody. Finding a system that will address all your needs as a team is essential. once you find your platform or platforms for communication, you should set-up a specific meeting time weekly and even a quick daily huddle just to ensure that everyone is apprised of each others’ tasks at hand and so you can address any concerns, etc. be flexible about how you communicate and make sure that your team is awarw of how to reach you at any given time and vice versa.
Company Culture- Experts say that in the recent years, top companies have been focusing more on their culture and identity as an organization. When handling a virtual team, this might be a little more challenging. This means that it may take a little more effort to establish the kind of environment and interpersonal interactions you wish to foster. You may want to consider setting-up meetings for the sole purpose of your team getting to know each other better. Create spaces and specific times where the objective is to bond as a team and get invested in each other.
Synchronicity- Synchronicity can be a challenge when everyone is scattered all over the globe. Challenging but not impossible. In order for everyone to be on the same page, you can set systems and processes in place so that everyone is following the same protocols and will always be on the same page. You can use other tools such as project collaboration software as well.
Trust- Trust is a sticky thing when it comes to managing a virtual team. It is quite understandable that you are more likely to trust an in-house employee who you can see at any time versus someone working remotely who you cannot. However, if you allow this distrust to manifest when you deal with your virtual team, it will most definitely have a negative effect. Micromanaging your team will only lead to frustration and ultimately a breakdown of your entire system if you go this route. therefore, be transparent and express your expectation of reciprocity of said transparency. Set clear deadlines, timelines and expectations for all assigned responsibilities. Establish your availability in case of any roadblocks. You may also want to invest in some sort of time tracking software if need be. Make sure that you establish responsibility and accountability in your team and remember why you hired your team members so you can trust that they will do what they need to do.
All in all, creating a virtual team can reap many benefits for you and your business. It can open up many doors and solve many of your pain points. However, always keep in mind that it is always a two way street and you have to match their efforts, different challenges will come up that you may have to deal with in ways you never thought possible. You need to give the same zeal and diligence that you would with an in-house team, the circumstances will simply be re-framed.
MyOutDesk can help you build your dream virtual team with our talented Virtual Assistants. Book your Double My Business Strategy Session today to find out how!