As more businesses get on board with remote working, millions of employers are facing a new challenge: how to maintain their company culture with a team that works from home.
It may seem difficult to stay connected across devices, but you shouldn’t dismiss the culture you’ve worked so hard to develop. A solid company culture is one of your business’s biggest assets and can help you retain top talent, increase productivity, and even maximize your profits – all while giving your remote employees a little more freedom and flexibility.
While the method may look a little different, you can still make and maintain a strong company culture with a team that works remotely.
BE TRANSPARENT WITH YOUR TEAM
Trust issues are one of the biggest threats to employee retention, and they can develop quickly when your team works remotely. It’s more difficult to process body language and tone of voice in a virtual setting, so meanings are often misconstrued. Employees can also feel more disconnected from the company when working from home, creating a sense that they are “out of the loop” from what’s going on in the office.
Your remote employees should trust you to be transparent with them at all times, so open and honest communication should be a key component of your company culture. Whether it’s good news about your quarterly numbers, current events in the company, or a possible problem on the horizon, you should share information openly with your remote team in a timely (and tactful) manner. Speaking of trust…
SHOW TRUST IN YOUR TEAM
Your employees shouldn’t only trust you – they should know that you trust them. Employees that feel like a trusted part of your team are more likely to be motivated and invested in their jobs, leading to increased productivity and a more positive company culture.
Unfortunately, micromanaging is a common mistake for companies with remote employees. While it makes sense to check-in with your team and their progress on important projects, it’s important that you don’t adopt an overbearing “big brother” style of surveillance. Instead, encourage everyone to stay on the same page through collaborative channels like Microsoft Teams and trust your team to tackle their tasks without you looking over their shoulder.
STAY CONNECTED TO YOUR CULTURE
It’s easy to lose focus on reinforcing your company culture when your team is largely remote. While your culture doesn’t disappear if it’s not developed, it may change into something that doesn’t align with your company values.
Start by actively discussing your culture with your staff and senior leadership. Once you’ve defined the culture you want for your company, consider ways to reinforce it with your remote employees. Feel free to get creative with your culture and think outside of the virtual meeting box. For example, a company that values friendly competition might host a company-wide contest for the cutest pet photo or the funniest Zoom face.
USE TOOLS TO ENCOURAGE TEAMWORK
Teamwork is a vital component to building and maintaining your company culture – but of course, it’s harder to reinforce when your team is remote. Luckily, there are a variety of tools that can help foster teamwork by making it easier to connect and collaborate with colleagues.
Microsoft 365 programs like Microsoft Planner or SharePoint are great for partnering on projects across devices. You can also implement communication channels like Slack or Microsoft Teams to keep your staff connected. The right tools can help your departments work together across the digital world to keep your culture and your productivity at an all-time high.
ENHANCE THE REMOTE WORKING EXPERIENCE
There’s a reason remote work is increasing across all industries: it emphasizes a work-life balance that helps to keep employees happy and engaged. If you want to maintain a strong company culture in a remote setting, you should recognize and enhance the benefits of a remote work experience.
For example, you may offer more flexible schedules or provide new leave policies for parents of small children. You could also show your support for family or personal time by scheduling all meetings or client conferences during a set of ‘core’ hours.
Of course, company culture isn’t the only challenge remote working can present for your company. From setting up your remote software to providing security training for your staff, Business Information Solutions (BIS) can help you create a strong and secure remote setting. Contact us today!
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