As the dust settles after the UK Government’s announcement on 22 September that people should again work from home, where possible, employers and employees must get to grips with what will now be the new normal for many more months to come. So, how do you make the most of this and ensure that your remote-working team culture is just as strong, if not more so, as any office-based team ever was?
In reality, with the impressive tech tools now at our fingertips, there is no reason to fear the prospect of a long-haul, or even permanent, move to your team working remotely. This need not necessarily be a working winter of discontent, but the moment the world wakes up to a more efficient way of conducting business.
Indeed, a recent poll of 1,000 employers found that an increasing number of bosses believe remote working will definitely save them money. In fact, as a recent study found that remote workers took shorter breaks than their office-based counterparts and worked an average of 1.4 days more per month, your business productivity could also be set to soar. As Peter Cheese, head of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), put it, “We’re at a moment of real change in the world of work”, but although change can initially be scary, it is just a matter of adapting to the new normal. So, companies that rise to the challenge and put in place the procedures and products to empower their workforce to excel in this brave new business world will be more resilient to any future crises and set to thrive.
Communication is key
Whether working from home or office based, what is undoubtedly key for a strong team culture, is great communication and collaboration. While the days of dropping in at a colleague’s desk for a quick chat, or exchanging quips at the coffee machine may be on hold for the moment, a geographically distributed workforce need not be an obstacle to your team working collaboratively and closely. With a plethora of top team collaboration tools available, you can keep the channels of communication wide open. At the roots of a strong team culture is great working relationships between team members, open communication between employers and workers, and clear team goals, all of which can be established and maintained via regular and consistent use of such team collaboration software. In fact, tech such as Microsoft Teams, RingCentral, Avaya Cloud Office and Zoom, also known as unified communication and collaboration (UC&C) tools, provide the means for effortless team and business-to-business collaboration. In addition, in this new world of Covid, while a business trip to meet your prospects is impractical, reliable, high quality video conferencing platforms are invaluable.