Even during a pandemic, don’t let productivity and morale slip. Face the challenges of leading a remote team head on.
With numerous on-going projects and deadlines, topped with managing your own to-do list, it can be difficult to keep up with the demands of leading a team. Now with the added pressure of navigating a crisis, many leaders are faced with adapting on a daily, if not hourly, basis. From virtual brainstorms to navigating team communication, we’ve all experienced the very sharp learning curve to shift your business and your staff completely online.
As working remotely has become the new normal, there are ways to combat the additional stress and burnout that it brings. The first step is acknowledging that if you are feeling the pressures of a work from home environment, it’s likely your team is too. Implementing strategies that will elevate some of this stress will help your team work smarter, not harder.
Here are 3 strategies to help lead while virtually managing a remote team.
1. Set clear expectations.
From one deadline to the next, it can be hard to manage a team’s progress without setting clear expectations and guidelines. To avoid micromanaging and frequent check-ins, discuss and determine a suitable timeline or critical path with your team. Encourage team members to set up notifications for due dates as well as half-way reminders to check into their progress.
2. Stick to a schedule (and include breaks!)
Having altered our schedules to reflect the new normal, most of us have a predictable work from home routine with little to no off-screen time. However, scheduling this time in is a top priority to ensure the health and wellness of your team. Whether you include a morning workout, a mandatory screen-free lunch break, or an afternoon walk, this off-screen time allows creativity to flow, stimulates new ideas, and boosts morale.
This and two other helpful rules to uphold when managing your team virtually.
3. Stay positive
When the going gets tough, the tough springs into action. Changing your negative mindset in challenging times can seem daunting, however as a leader it’s important to set an example with confidence and positivity. Utilize a ‘negativity deadline’ strategy when it comes to bad news and challenging situations. Allow yourself a set amount of time to reflect on emotions, then move forward into action when the time is up.
Seeking more valuable insights on leadership? Head over to our founder Mandy Gilbert’s weekly column in Inc. Magazine.