Remote teams, aka teams made up of people working from different geographical locations, have been on the rise for a while. As businesses around the world expand beyond their borders and telecommuting gets more popular, teams have started spanning widespread distances. Equipped with multimedia devices and basic connectivity to the internet, people can work from anywhere. And this calls for managers to educate remote teams about local market.
The appeal of forming remote teams has been there for quite some time now. However, their popularity has skyrocketed ever since the outbreak of the COVID-19. According to a recent study, 75% of people consider remote working as the norm in the wake of the corona-virus. Furthermore, a recent SHRM study found out that 64% of U.S. employees are working remotely. This has not only helped squash the misconception that collaboration is tough to stimulate when the workforce is distributed, but it has also changed the perspective of organisations on remote work.
What was once seen as an optional hazard that was best used as a stopgap for temporary situations, remote work has become prevalent now with almost every organisation espousing a work-from-home schedule. This has, however, come at a price. As employees wonder if this radical switch will exist as an impromptu do or force a permanent paradigm shift, employers are grappling with their own issues of managing distributed teams while upholding a strong team culture.
It’s safe to say that the transition has not been easy on business leaders. According to a survey by Terminal titled Remote Leadership Report, 77% of leaders have never managed a fully distributed team, while 89% have never managed a partially remote team. For business leaders, distributed teams represent a new reality, one that can quickly turn into a nightmare if they don’t have a remote working plan in place from the outset. In light of this alteration of the recruitment & work order, managers and business leaders would do well to look for certain soft skills that allow their remote resources to understand the goals and objectives of the company while recruiting.
Why Should Remote Managers Be Particular About Goal Alignment?
Aligning brand goals with remote workers is key to a successful working experience. Remote teams only fall in place when remote employees are more than aware of the brand goals of the organizations and have an understanding of their primary market. This is so that they can leverage their skills accordingly to not only contribute to business goals but also be vital cogs of the larger workforce by being a part of the company’s culture.
There’s a strong causality between company culture and employee performance. There are numerous studies backed with exhaustive research that have shown how initiating individual employees with the organizational goals of the company can foster enhanced collaboration and result in increased business success.
When your workforce is aligned with the organization’s goals, they sympathize better with them and are aware of the steps that need to be taken to pace their efforts accordingly to suitably contribute to the company’s overall success. Among other things, your organization will be well-positioned to reap the following benefits:
- Improved overall business performance
- Quicker execution of company strategy
- Evolution of better leaders
- Retainment of more remote employees
- Development of a uniform brand voice
Importance of a Culture-Driven Mission
People are the lifeblood of any business, and businesses can’t successfully function without them. Many a time, the very things that are supposed to propel businesses forward; driving productivity, enabling collaboration between departments, and adjusting to a perpetually changing competitive landscape; often focus on processes rather than the people they are meant for.
In today’s economy, where the right talent comes at a premium, and the distributed workforce is the norm, organisations should be able to deploy the right resources to projects instantly to maintain an enviable time to market. And that if this is the new norm, businesses have to be particular about the kind of culture they set to maximise the efficiency and productivity of their employees.
In fact, researchers have extensively reviewed how optimisation of efficiency and the productivity of distributed systems teams depend upon organisational culture. According to a 2019 article by the American Psychological Association, working remotely can “improve employee productivity, creativity and morality” on the premise that employees adequately understand the nature of the work and employers adopt appropriate strategies to align their workforce with the organisation’s brand goals to foster collaboration.
How to Align Remote Workers With Brand Goals?
We have already established how important it is to align remote workers with brand goals and how essential it is as a part of an employee engagement strategy. Furthermore, studies have shown that initiating remote workforces with company goals have many other implications, such as:
- Employees who are well initiated and committed work a lot harder and are much more dedicated to the business
- Businesses with better employee commitment metrics earn two and a half times more profit than their rivals
- Dissatisfied employees cost US$450-550 million annually due to low-performance values and reduced turnover
When you want your remote teams to perform well, the first thing you have to consider is the tools they will need. In addition to providing the right tools, businesses should do a lot of digital legwork and set the right processes by doing a number of things, such as:
Increase Internal Communications
Miscommunication is, for the most part, the obstacle that hinders remote teams the most from achieving their objectives. Collaborative software systems can help employees interact more through the right channels, thus reducing misinformation and removing the first barrier to productivity that is hindered.
Capture Important Data About Employee Tasks
The first and only quantitative metric you need to make you understand and handle your virtual teams is the data you get about their performance from your work management app. With the help of this information, you will be able to notice important behavioral patterns. Login times can help you ascertain the duration of attendance, while task completion logs can help you identify when employees work effectively. This can thus help you define the best times for meetings and/or calls.
Deliver Important Messages About Brand Goals
Digital communication tools provide you with ways to inform your workers how their roles and duties contribute to the overall objectives of the business. You can equip your employees with immediate insights and a collection of their own performance metrics to demonstrate to them how their activities and production benefit the business in terms of productivity.
Allocate the Right Tasks and Goals to Teams
Technology can provide you with ways to accomplish your organizational objectives through a series of objectives and targets that your employees can see. Having the ability to relate their work to the objectives of the business is among the first things that a committed employee must have.
Set SMART Objectives
Your objectives and desired results should be SMART objectives, i.e., they should be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely. Ensure that you assign the appropriate tasks to the right people, determine who is accountable for what, that workers get enough time to complete their jobs, and that the targets are easy to quantify.
Train Workers on How to Use Digital Tools
Don’t assume that your workers will utilize your chose collaboration & communication tools unless you train them properly in it. Most of the times, employees only use such tools to perform the most basic of tasks, but if you incentivize some parts of the software, you can promote its proactive usage more easily.
Automate Your PMS (Performance Management System)
When you automate this aspect of the collaboration & communication solution, you can establish better targets, enable your workers to complete tasks more easily, and equip yourself with the right insights about your team’s performance. When you circulate the tasks into an organized framework that generates real-time management reports, you can utilize it to inspire your employees and celebrate their participation.
It’s crucial that you are in frequent touch with your staff. This not only helps you prevent blunders, but it also allows you to develop stronger relationships and match goals through consistent interaction. Evaluate the progress rate and goals positively, but also be frank and honest when it comes to shortcomings. Always concentrate your conversations on the priorities of the business and how to achieve them.
Operate Above Task Level
Although educating your workforce on how to use your online platform and chosen digital solution is necessary, don’t make their jobs heavily dependent and reliant on technological enforcement. Instead, concentrate on the most critical aspects of the work, while offering motivation to engage in reward schemes.
Successful collaboration depends on a combination of the efficiency of your communication skills and the remote working tools that you employ for your team. Aligning remote teams with brand goals can be a lofty task at times — but setting SMART goals, communicating regularly, and conveying business goals on a daily basis can and will increase remote employee engagement and ultimately drive business performance.
The Uplers Advantage
Uplers is a global digital services provider offering end-to-end web, design, digital marketing, and other services to businesses across 52+ nations. Renowned among global circles as a top talent provider, Uplers has been helping organisations build efficient remote teams to fulfil scaling needs and achieve business success through its innovation, processes, and people.