How To Build A Strong Culture With A Remote Team

You can, and should, encourage remote workers to let their personalities shine through in these communications. Before you can successfully manage a remote team, you must buy into the concept.

  • For example, by opening up communication or investing in team building.
  • These bond the team and grow into artifacts that make up your team culture.
  • They give remote workers autonomy without leaving them on an island – and studies show that autonomy leads to higher work satisfaction.
  • We hope the advice above can help you build a strong culture in your remote team, whether your team is newly adjusting to working from home, or you have been remote for a while.

Ultimately, when you build an organizational culture for a remote team, you want to be sure all teammates have a deep sense of belonging. How you do that for your organization will depend on your unique circumstances. Just as caring ranked high across regions, authority consistently ranked low across regions, making it one of the least common company culture attributes. An authoritative corporate culture stresses competition and powerful features like self-confidence, decisiveness, and boldness. While this mentality is more common in some countries than others, it’s not generally a dominant aspect of corporate cultures today, according to employees in the survey. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by all the cultural differences in business, there is some good news. Some aspects of organizational culture are remarkably consistent across countries, according to Harvard research.

This significantly expands the reach of your company’s network of close relationships, giving everyone a chance to understand different teams and maybe even share different skills. This remote work software helps employees stay connected to fulfilling work goals and desires that have nothing to do with physical space. Motivated and driven to pursue goals they can now track on a daily basis, remote employees naturally feel more connected to company missions. Use Quizbreaker to build and distribute quizzes that are perfect for virtual team building and virtual team bonding. It takes the burden of facilitating remote employee communication away from one team. provides the tools and the virtual space, and employees need no help or instruction before diving right in.

Revisit Your Companys Core Values

To give you an example of a remote work culture that stays true to the company mission statement, we’ll have a look at Buffer. With employee goals and milestones at your fingertips, you can quickly and easily get a big-picture look at employee progress and success. The event planning experts at the Go Game will set up virtual game shows, happy hours, and conferences that help your team members bond from any location. To start, Fond saves you time by streamlining the process of delivering recognition and rewards via an easy-to-use platform.

how to build culture in a remote team

It’s free to sign up and add unlimited learners to the GoSkills LMS, so you can provide your team with the essential skills and information they need while working from home. To avoid confusion, establish their manager as the first point of contact, and designate specific people they should ask about certain things, such as Steve for tech support, or Joanne for scheduling. If you have new hires, ask your existing team to reach out to them and introduce themselves. You can set up virtual catch ups with each team member, so the new hires get to know their workmates faster. While many companies have been thrown into remote work rather quickly during the pandemic, this doesn’t lessen the need for training your team on how to be remote. It is essential that everyone knows how they will be communicating and completing their work so that everything continues to run smoothly. Joining a company as a remote worker can feel like you’ve been thrown into the deep end.

Living your culture and being the example you want workers, contractors, and other team members to follow goes a long way in building and maintaining a great company culture. Task management apps keep remote teams on the same page for what needs to happen and when.

Creating Light Touch Rituals

When it’s accepted as a cultural norm, you can more easily work within parameters that give you control over your work and home life. “When many on the team are working from home, you have people who seemingly never stop working and struggle with how to define their personal life and work when it’s all in one place,” Keil says. Once these guidelines become a part of your virtual corporate culture, you’ll be less inclined to make a knee-jerk decision that your team needs a Zoom call every time you have a quick update to share.

A simple shout-out for a job well done provides employees with a boost of confidence. Doing this in a public space also allows their teammates to chime in with their praise and fun emojis. Stellar communication skills are the backbone of successful team collaboration. They help teammates speak to each other respectfully and efficiently, so they can accomplish more and reduce confusing back-and-forths.

One of the top challenges of international transactions is that companies don’t often document their difficulties openly. If you interview someone and get the impression that they do not share your values or wouldn’t thrive as a member of your company, then it may be best to move on to other candidates. One of the beauties of hiring internationally is that it opens up a global talent pool where you can find the very best candidates to join your company. Get inspired by the many ways workers are adapting in times of stress, and you’ll start to see your own silver linings, too. Another way to think of good habits is directing people to use certain modes of communication depending on their needs. Have you identified a possible customer service issue, safety issue, or other flaw? If your team doesn’t have a budget for delivered treats, consider sending a card or special video from the team, or a bonus or gift card of some sort.

These sessions end the week on a fun note and each presenter receives a bonus for their participation and vulnerability. Her article, “How to stay connected while working remotely,” is worth checking out.

Creating a transparent team culture enables your team to fully engage and make informed decisions at work. Greater trust also helps team members cooperate, which raises team performance. Introducing psychological safety uplifts your team and gives everyone an equal chance at success, while your organization benefits from increased productivity and innovation. Clarifying your company’s focus gives your team a sense of direction to buy into and support.

how to build culture in a remote team

That belief is weaved into our procedures, rituals, and the way we all work. With a delicate balance of light touch rituals and processes in place, we’ve found that a lot of relationship building and nurturing happens organically. Our workspace is welcoming and honest, our DMs are open, and our team takes care of the rest. Most of us have probably been part of teams that host regular work drinks or lunch, and while those can be great for getting to know each other, they can sometimes feel unnatural (or worse, like a chore 😬).

How Do You Build Team Morale Remotely?

Rather than just focusing on their first week of work, instead develop a plan for the next 30, 60, or 90 days. This will help the employee get aligned with the expectation of the role. Check out our resource guides to learn more about the graphic design tools that will help you to achieve your design dreams. Check out our resource center to find answers to common coding questions, interview tips, and step-by-step guides that will help you in your development career. Get certificates in multiple Excel courses to prove your proficiency in Excel. Whether you want to do XLOOKUP, COUNTIF, CONCATENATE or simply merge cells, we’ve got you covered with step-by-step guides to the most important tools, formulas, and functions in Excel. By doing this, team members feel more like there is a local presence in their hometown.

Keep to your values, listen to your employees, have some fun, and it will take shape organically. Work cultures that keep people happy and businesses thriving take time — it’s worth it. Just as important as creating a welcoming environment is ensuring employees know their rights and individualities are protected within the workplace. Taking the time to align on those values and behaviors and ensure everyone is one the same page is integral in building a strong team culture that sticks. When working in a virtual team, it’s helpful to acknowledge the unique and sometimes challenging nature of remote work in order to come up with a set of working practices that are fit for purpose. This method from Hyper Island is designed especially to help a virtual team define how they want to work together while surfacing some of the challenging elements of remote working in a productive way.

These people may come from many walks of life and may have been influenced by different organizational cultures, so obliging them to jointly adhere to a group approach is not likely to be easy. All the more if they’re geographically situated in different parts of the world. This can apply just as much to small-medium dispersed firms as to large international corporations. In this sense, effective communication for a remote team can dramatically impact its overall effectiveness, productivity, and long-term viability. So building effective communication across remote teams is necessary for long-term success.

For some groups, big picture thinking around team purpose is enough to feel galvanized, connected, and ready to move forward. For others, it’s important to connect core purpose to concrete actions at the outset in order to get them on board. A strong team culture is one where everyone in the team is aligned on purpose, values, behaviors, and working practices while also feeling they are celebrated as individuals.

how to build culture in a remote team

When an employee says that something is really bothering them, they’ve probably been thinking about it for a while. A good company doesn’t have unreachable communication barriers between employees in any directions, regardless of how different positions they’re in. This constructive, candid feedback will help ensure your team leaders and other employees stick to your company culture and create the best remote work environment possible. One way to make a virtual meeting fun is to include elements like icebreaker questions and group photos. A rule of thumb is to make these activities quick and easy for remote workers to participate in; it’s not meant to be stressful or a skill challenge. Our team members in large cities sometimes have opportunities to meet and hangout, but for the entire team these opportunities are few and far between. When we have projects or big meetings, we sometimes fly team members in, and we also plan company retreats.

Next, invite the group to decide whether these items fall in under the circle of influence or the circle of concern. Debrief and discuss in order to help everyone understand and align on what items they should or should not focus energy on in the future. It affects performance, informal and formal relations, atmosphere of the workplace etc.

Virtual Background Apps That Will Elevate Your Video Meetings

Some great apps allow participants to vote, and are an easy way to determine if the group has reached a consensus. This can be done in real time during the meeting, or immediately afterwards to separate deliberation from decision-making. You increase involvement and engagement when you use these types of technological tools. Draw in virtual attendees (for example, “Sasha, please share your thoughts”) to keep them engaged. You might even consider keeping a tally to be sure all are contributing and all voices are heard. Lastly, don’t let people ramble or go off course; kindly interrupting, if necessary, is your job as a meeting leader. This approach has worked with fundraisers, hospital workers, travel guide producers, mail-order pharmacies, and sales teams, for example.

A common fear of new remote managers is that employees will lack engagement, following the stereotype of remote workers who get distracted by errands, laundry, and life. If you hire driven individuals and unite them behind a common goal and values, team members who work remotely often find themselves working more, either unable or unwilling to step away. Given the model above, it’s clear that the process of creating a healthy remote culture begins well before the team is formed. While Schein describes underlying assumptions as tacit or unspoken, we believe remote teams need to be deliberate and intentional in voicing them. Improving company culture is an important part of operating a successful business. You can and should invest in team culture because it will help improve communication, collaborating and many other factors.

Hidden qualities and know-how can be spotted early on so new employees can later take on tasks they enjoy and are best at. Finally, check in with them regularly and get them to be a core part of any team building activities and fun meetings. Casual recognition, such as nods, high-fives, and mini applauses, happen in onsite offices all the time. Assembly helps virtual teams create remote work cultures filled with the same kinds of small, yet satisfying, everyday recognitions. A co-located office develops its own personality through inside jokes, shared experiences, and a collaborative environment, such as a meeting room with whiteboards. In offices, culture can evolve organically through team activities, collaboration, and other IRL shared experiences.

If someone is periodically turning in their work hours late, it’s not acceptable just because everyone’s working from home. On day one, they post their answers to our #float Slack channel and introduce themselves. We’ve found that this tradition (we’ve Information engineering done it enough times to call it that now!) helps us engage on a more human level right off the bat and provides our team with more “more than work” reasons to connect. Trust and respect start with the team leader, but it doesn’t end with them.

All of these steps can help you strengthen your organizational culture and continue to build collaboration and rapport with teammates, even when the collaboration is virtual and the work culture is remote. Watch our webinar,Leading Remote Teams When the Stakes Are High, which covers the mindset, skill set, and tool set needed to effectively lead remote teams. In a “normal” office environment, the “watercooler” is where all the unofficial, off-topic, unrelated chatter happens. In some places it’s seen as a waste of time, but it’s actually an integral part of employees bonding outside work and creating trust between each other. Remote employees have a tendency to feel isolated when they’re working solo. That’s why team leaders should strive to open the lines of communication and get employees to connect on a personal level. Including this aspect in your company culture creates a foundation of trust, mutual respect, and psychological safety for all employees.

Those same people might also wonder how to articulate the specific benefits. Kelly Barcelos is a content marketing manager for Jobsoid and specializes in HR. When Kelly is not building marketing campaigns, she is busy creating content to help people hire better. As a working mom of three, she knows the importance of time management and counts on her multitasking ability to get her through her to-do lists. The GoSkills LMS is the ideal solution to train your remote team and help them stay productive. You can upload custom courses, use classroom courses to track attendance to virtual lessons and live streams, and the GoSkills award-winning course library is an optional add-on.

Every new starter meets with our CEO and co-founder, Glenn, on their first day at Float. Glenn walks them through our mission, vision, strategy, and values to help each person get acclimated to the team quickly. When new team members join Float, we kick things off by asking a few questions to help introduce them to the team. These questions are personalized to their role, location, and anything else we think could help the rest of the team learn a little bit about them as a person. Yet, despite the setbacks to connect in IRL, our team culture is thriving. Despite not being together in the same physical location, the culture members felt when they worked with the remote team had the most significant influence on their performance.

How to Get People to Actually Participate in Virtual Meetings – Guide on Harvard Business Review about how to encourage virtual meeting participation. Take a before screenshot of your desktop, then delete all the files you no longer use and empty the trash. Finally, take a screenshot to show your progress and share it with your team. If a team member has the mentioned life experience then they can put one finger down. Either the player that puts all fingers down first wins, or if you want a twist then the last player with fingers remaining up wins instead. By starting, you give your team members a little longer to think about answers, and also model what a great answer can be. The goal isn’t to build something museum-worthy; it is to spark creativity and give your team a fun way to interact together.

When team members listen to each other workflow becomes more fluid and integrated. Along with the healthy atmosphere is the foundation of great teamwork – you will enjoy better productivity, higher quality of work, and reaching settled goals.

The Importance Of Corporate Culture

While these general principles should apply across companies, it’s also important for companies to develop a corporate culture that is unique to them. Consider the specific qualities you want to see reflected in the way your employees work together day to day.

When everyone is operating from the same script, a clear vision and set of values can really help root your firm and build momentum. This isn’t a one-time event; objectives, culture, and values should be reinforced on a regular basis. When this effort is uneven, the group might become disjointed and fracture. We have bonded over potato competitions, trivia, remote work struggles, goats, goal setting, and so much more. Finding the silver lining during these times and planning fun activities have strengthened our team in so many ways and is setting an even stronger foundation for our future. It’s a chance to get to talk to your teammates about things outside of work, and enjoy a coffee or donut while you’re at it.

The more clearly an employee understands the direct impact of their work, the more likely they are to be positively motivated, and to experience more fulfillment. Research has found that when employees realize their work matters to another individual, they lift their game.

Be willing to spend to bring everyone together for team-building, whether to attend a conference or a company getaway. Also encourage remote workers to work without distractions for blocks of time each day – even if that means turning off certain communication channels – and to take breaks as needed. Workers that can get into a “flow state” with their work, and take their scheduled breaks, will be much more effective than those who are constantly connected. Put your remote workers through the same rigorous hiring standards you would anyone else. Hire a balanced team consisting of people of different upbringings, experiences, and ages, in order to bring a wide array of viewpoints to the table.

how to build culture in a remote team

But some types of employee communications require context beyond the written word. Video conferencing is the perfect venue that can allow “tone” beyond what’s written. Using MegaMeeting’s online video conferencing platform will allow people to recognize each other, as well as see facial expressions and reactions.

What’s important is that you understand what you are trying to achieve and involve your entire team in the process. As mentioned above, every team develops a standardized way of interacting, working together, and demonstrating certain values. It’s important to define and co-create your team culture so you can ensure those interactions, working practices, and behaviors are those you want as a group. Remember that team culture is a reflection of your shared values and working practices, and it will be formed by both collective and individual actions within the team. Sometimes, it’s easy for team members to slip up and be a little too casual with each other or their superiors. This is also important because over-communicating lessens the likelihood of miscommunication, which is all the more likely for remote teams that had to make the transition in a hurry.

It’s vital to know why you are doing the work you are doing and believe in the goals and purpose of the team. Building a team culture that helps everyone in your organization feel valued and empowered to do their best work should be a priority. At in-person workspaces, over-communicating can become annoying or get in the way of the productivity of employees. This is also great for general socialization and joking around, both of which are important if people are going to become friends with one another and help each other out work. There’s a real human element missing from text communication that video chat can help bring to life even if you have to work remotely.

Places To Find The Best Meeting Backgrounds And How To Change Yours

Establish a list of goals for their first 3 months and include getting to know everyone in the team as a priority. Make sure you also introduce them to the entire company so they won’t feel like they’re not welcomed in a group that’s already been together for years. For a team transitioning to working remotely, it can be hard to lose that personal contact and water cooler chat that helps create work culture. It would be wise to set up regular team calls for work related issues and projects, but also virtual catchups where the team can talk about non-work related matters. Make sure your employees know how to use any new software or tools they will be using, for example if you have implemented Slack or Microsoft Teams as a new way to communicate. Training could be implemented via online courses, or you could hold virtual team meetings or webinars to take questions and get everybody up to speed. Typically the longer you play, the more intense the conversation gets and the more team members will share their values.

Be sure that any communication requirements expected by any team member are laid out well ahead of time. In a nutshell, a remote team is any group of employees that work together remotely. They can be spread around the city, a country, or even the entire world thanks to the power of telecommunications and new technologies. Working remotely is becoming more and more common among today’s professionals. The convenience of being able to work from anywhere allows for more flexibility, greater work-life balance and can even increase productivity. However, when employees are so physically and geographically spread out, it becomes even more difficult to create a sense of camaraderie and teamwork.

Icebreakers are easy to include in virtual meetings and virtual happy hours. The activity makes for both an interesting look into the personal lives of your coworkers and is also a fun way to get to know your entire virtual team better.

Training your managers in practical ways to engage workers and encouraging them to get to know their employees is a good way to lead by example. Pairing up an existing employee with a brand new one is a smart way to keep culture going. Partnering internal employees with remote workers and then tasking the in-house worker with making sure the remote worker is included is an important way to keep culture flowing without leaving anyone out. Kim Harrison, Founder and Principal of Cutting Edge PR, loves sharing actionable ideas and information about professional communication and business management. He has wide experience as a corporate affairs manager, consultant, author, lecturer, and CEO of a non-profit organization.

One of the biggest challenges involved in building a culture for remote teams is to make people confident in their career development. That’s why you should encourage professional growth and tell your employees to contribute when they can – suggesting new projects and offer their opinions on company decisions. Your organization’s remote work culture will determine its ability to thrive in the changed world post-pandemic. Prepare your leaders for the new world of work – including improving their virtual communication skills and equipping them to lead remote teams – with our online course, The Effective Leader.

We’ve seen employee instant messaging channels that are devoted to outside interests like kids or pets. All of these things can help people collaborate on things that are near and dear to their hearts outside of work. Since the onset of the pandemic, remote work has become a popular topic. However, the conversation usually centers on being more productive in day-to-day functions. Various initiatives are outlined below to create better higher-level results from remote working during these difficult times during the pandemic. Getting team members to embrace collective values isn’t easy, whether they work in the same building or remotely.

However — and this is key — to avoid any feelings of marginalization by team members who weren’t invited to a particular meeting, give them the option to attend any future meetings on the topic if they wish. They typically won’t take you up on it, but they will appreciate being asked. Let those who will attend think about what the agenda should be so that they’ll also feel ownership of what will be discussed. Meetings with a clear agenda and understandable context allow people from different locations to feel more engaged and in the loop. Try organizing the agenda – all or partly – as a set of questions to be answered rather than a set of topics to be discussed. By framing agenda items as questions, you have a better sense of who really has to be invited to the meeting.

With remote and hybrid work on the rise, effective virtual collaboration has never been more important. Success requires more than technological solutions – don’t overlook the importance of interpersonal skill development, too. This is a great opportunity to talk with your employees, find out their preference for communicating, and set some parameters that everyone can follow. Lay some ground rules for when an email is appropriate, versus a phone call, versus an online chat.

If you want to build trust and a sense of belonging in your remote team, then you should be creating a culture where you help people learn from their peers and grow with them. Incorporate activities that encourage growth, leadership, and fellowship. Set up review meetings to discuss each employee’s performance and set metrics to measure progress. We have created this article for everyone who has decided to give hiring a remote team a try and wants to preserve a company culture among the employees who don’t have one central office to come to every day. We hope that our recommendations will come in handy and you will follow them when starting to work on a remote team.

According to a recent Gartner survey of chief financial officers, 74% do plan to shift some positions to permanently remote that were only on-site before the pandemic. Now that there are more companies with employees distributed across the world, it’s important to be intentional with your company culture. Understanding the national cultures in countries where you’re hiring is key if you want to develop an empathetic company culture that celebrates and respects differences.

As a leader, you can build a culture of integrity by being transparent about your role and what you intend to deliver to your teammates. Provide specific details about your tasks, and follow up on verbal agreements in writing. This is especially key if you are managing remote employees and leading from a distance.

Outline the objectives of each team so employees have tangible results to work toward. Not only will this help guide individual performance, but it will encourage collaboration between team members. Make sure there is room for feedback to adjust quotas and KPIs when needed.

Surveys by the Pew Research Center found that before the outbreak, only 20% of the workforce were working from home. However, as realization of the virus threat increased, the number of people working remotely rose to 71%, with 54% of them still wishing to continue to work remotely even after the pandemic ends. Workers who communicate respectfully and more efficiently with one another do their work better and do it more happily. These two factors can’t be understated for any organization that strives for success, no matter the circumstances. Many of the points I described in the article are universal (whether remote or in-office).

For example, we did a company cruise of the Caribbean that was equal parts business planning and fun. What might be surprising, introverts can sometimes struggle more with isolation when working remotely than extroverts. This reality is a good reminder that when it comes to building organizational culture, you can’t assume anything. It’s important that your group has a way to touch base with each member regularly to ensure they are doing well and don’t need other support from the team. This can be accomplished in myriad ways and can be a responsibility of all from management to colleagues to human resources. Allow your team to generate ideas and contribute leadership rather than just expect them to complete a list of tasks each week.

how to build culture in a remote team

Recommended How Employee Recognition Can Boost Morale and Retention Employee recognition is a key driver in carving out a healthy and sustainable company culture. Learn how fostering authentic employee engagement with your team can positively impact your business. If it’s something you haven’t done too often, you might not have aced the onboarding process the first time around. So, get feedback from each remote employee about the recruitment process as to what worked and what didn’t. The beauty of trusting your teammates is that oftentimes your teammates reward you. In a remote team, there aren’t any silly rules about having your butts in a seat during certain hours of the day.

Explore Your Values

Pair Buddies are a weekly random pairing with 2-3 people on the team that allows you to catch up on work, life, or anything else. Pair buddy chats help keep some semblance of the office social life as part of work and encourage people who work in different departments to get to know each other better.

Supporting our team to live their best work life means adopting rituals that fit easily into everyone’s schedule. Connecting needs to be genuine and straightforward, and respectful of each other’s time. Everyone has a profile page that covers their role at Float and gives a window into their home life and hobbies. For example, we have very few meetings, so when we do connect with each other, it’s often motivated by genuine interest, intention, and care. We’ve known for over a decade that individual performance is hugely dependent upon the team that individuals are placed on. Top performance by individuals hinges on whether or not their teammates, their manager, and the organization they are a part of gives them the support, and the resources they need to do their best work.

You can have players accumulate points and win prizes, or ignore points all-together. For the next round, switch hosts and continue with the same game mechanics. First, invite everyone to a call with a pint of their favorite brew; whether that beverage is tea, beer or wine. Then, a host organizes everyone into smaller teams and reads out questions.

Yet in many cases, virtual communication strips context and nuance from conversations. There’s no doubt that each organization has its own culture — a self-reinforcing web of beliefs, practices, and behaviors that form that organization’s identity. In addition to transparency from top to bottom, there also needs to be full transparency when it comes to horizontal processes in the company. This means attention to the work process, dependencies and collaboration—clarity about who does what, why and how, and how different roles and workflows are connected. Whatever you decide when it comes to your meeting schedule, keep it real, though—too many useless meetings can mean a lot of wasted time that could be used for individual work. Besides having discussions, it’s also important to have all of it down in writing.

Birthdays, work anniversaries, weddings, and babies can and should be celebrated remotely, just as they would be in the office. The Trip is a team problem solving game with a travel theme – perfect for bringing people together online. Studies have shown that playing games also helps to reduce stress, and that digital games can be more effective than meditation for post work recovery. Therefore different strategies and methods are required to unify your remote team. If they’re not in the office, send them a care package of swag, their new equipment, and a letter to welcome them to the organization. If you do have a meeting, make sure you’ve tested out your technology so that it can work for everyone.

In this case you’d say something like “Find one thing that makes you productive and one thing that makes you laugh” and give the team 60 seconds to grab the items and bring them back. And the last thing you could try is to build buffer time into these virtual meetings. Jump on the line five or ten minutes early so people have a time to chit chat.

These tools are designed specifically to keep people collaborating, and they build remote work culture by allowing people the immediacy of instant communication. Positive work culture and good communication help a team do much more than just implement their projects; these concepts help team members to excel in their tasks and rise to new heights. Culture is “how we do things around here,” according to Gallup consultants. It’s one thing to slack off in a remote team when you don’t care about the culture, when the boss isn’t aware, and you aren’t particularly friendly with co-workers. It’s another thing entirely to do that when team members you care about are relying on you.

Text-based communication requires less emphasis on interpersonal skills and physical appearance, offering an effective way for them to participate more in decision-making activities. What’s more – workers who say they are on a team are 2.3 times more likely to be fully engaged than those who are not, according to a 2018 ADP Research survey of 19,000 employees. This finding held true within all 19 countries in the study – and in many countries the difference between non-team and team workers was even greater. Fully engaged employees are dedicated to an organization’s purpose, certain in their definition of excellence, confident in the support of their teammates, and excited by their organization’s future. If you have ever heard the adage, “if you talk the talk, then you gotta walk the walk”, then you will be familiar with the ethos behind this idea to improve team culture. While successfully articulating your company values or mission statement is commendable, management needs to see these concepts through with actions for lasting change to occur. Humans are social beings that crave interaction — despite the pandemic.

how to build culture in a remote team

She has been working in distributed teams for three years, and is passionate about helping them succeed. When working remotely, no one actually can control how much time an employee spends on work and how many hours per week they spend working. Ensure you can provide your employees with everything they need, including sustainable professional growth and a space for personal development. Frequently, one task is accomplished not by one person but by a group of people.

We also respect individual choices to drink alcohol or not, so Afterhours seemed to be the most inclusive choice. Early into the COVID-19 quarantine, our team learned just how forced conversations can feel during remote social activities due to the fact that our day-to-day lives Scaling monorepo maintenance are limited to our new at-home routines. Anyone who has worked at a traditional company can probably tell you that one of the biggest complaints that employees have is recognition. For most workers, that means a simple acknowledgement of a work anniversary or a job well done.

Create Remote Team Rituals

Team culture is important, whether you’re an organization of five people or five hundred. With a healthy team culture, everyone in your team can be happier, more engaged, and productive in the work that they do. Leaders can practice many of the above effective communication pointers, like over communication, throughout all their meetings with their employees. Practicing excellent remote communication techniques can provide active examples that your employees can learn from. Leaders are going to be the ones driving most of the above initiatives, so they need to be focused on creating an effective culture for good communication. For example, they’re the ones who need to be setting guidelines and outlining expectations clearly, and getting everyone to come out of their communicative shells when it’s time for a team meetup.

how to build culture in a remote team

Even if you’ve never thought of it in those terms, consider all the ways in which your team interacts, what you value, and what is important to you as a group. We have Donut integrated with Slack, and every four weeks, it connects us with one other Float team member at random to schedule a 15-minute catch-up. We find that most of the Donut chats go on for way longer than 15 minutes, but, ultimately, it’s the team who is driving this. With canceled team meetups this year and last, 1 in 4 of us have never actually met in person.

Finding space to have fun, collaborate, and celebrate creativity should always be encouraged. An example of poor team culture is when people don’t feel connected to one another. Of all the methods there are for building team culture, having fun as a team can be one of the most transformative. Simply feeling more connected and getting to know each other outside of working roles can be instrumental in helping your team culture grow.

A clear vision and set of values can really help ground your company and drive momentum when everyone is operating from the same playbook. This isn’t a one-and-done process, but goals, culture, and values should be reinforced consistently. When this effort is inconsistent, the group can stray and develop fissures.

At a grassroots level, Slack channels have served as micro-communities within Bonusly. We have channels like #running, #books, #yoga, #fitness, and #terrace-house that all serve different interests throughout the team. I joined #running shortly after joining the team and it has been a great source of inspiration and motivation to get back into running. There are various ranges of experience in the group and being able to receive tips on running from Bonusly’s more seasoned runners has helped immensely. Each session is recorded in Zoom and saved in a shared folder in case anyone is unable to attend.

As new employees come on board, make sure they are introduced to the existing team so they feel more comfortable. It’s a bit more difficult when workers aren’t sitting elbow-to-elbow, but it’s by no means impossible. To make people with different backgrounds, temperaments, and personalities work like one mind and body takes courage and effort. This may be a hard task but with the tips we share above, it’s never impossible. The problem with remote work is many frontline employees don’t get to interact with their team leader or someone in authority. For rank-and-file employees, this lack of interaction can easily cause them to lose self-esteem and make them think less of their role.

Do you bring them to a team meeting and have them stand up and give a little speech about themselves? You may need to be a bit more thoughtful to introduce your new remote employees and integrate them fully into the team. But managers often fear that remote work will put team culture at risk. Cultural differences shouldn’t be an afterthought how to build culture in a remote team if you want to manage a global team successfully. Navigating cultural differences is one of thetop HR considerations for an international expansion. To help celebrate businesses paving their way forward, we partnered with Forbes on the Next 1000 initiative to spotlight bold entrepreneurs and share their most valuable lessons.

Posted by: Lauren Thomas