How to Keep Teams Motivated While Working Remotely

Approximately half of Canadian workers already work outside the office for at least half the time, according to one study. With the advent of social distancing, most businesses have closed their doors, sending employees home to work remotely. Here are a few tips to keep your team motivated across the digital divide.

Project Management Software

Project management tools provide up-to-the-minute updates for team members. There are many web-based and cloud-based tools that won’t strain network servers. For example, Asana, Basecamp and Wrike help many companies manage projects and tasks. Managers can run multiple projects, assign tasks and create weekly priority lists.

Notifications let team members know when tasks have been completed. Plus, many tools have chat and comment functionality.

Professional Development

When team members have to contend with the clash of home and work priorities, professional development and educational opportunities can improve morale and focus. Employees who feel valued tend to stick around longer, so give them opportunities to expand their professional skills.

Progressive training courses allow team members to build on their knowledge and feel a sense of accomplishment. This can lead to innovation and thought leadership in the workplace.

Casual Communication and Online Culture

If your team normally interacts in the office, leaders may find it hard to maintain the corporate culture remotely. Set up a time to interact casually. Whether you connect on social media or use WhatsApp or other apps to send cat videos, coronavirus memes or sanity tips on working with the kids at home — non-work-related conversations help everyone connect on a deeper level.

Using Platforms Effectively

Here’s how to use various platforms to motivation and cohesive while the team is working at home:

  • Email: Use group emails for more in-depth conversations so employees can refer to them later
  • Real-time chat: Use this for one-on-one or small group meetings for urgent questions
  • Video chat: Ideal for complex feedback and training sessions
  • Voice over IP (VoIP): A great solution for topics that take too long to explain via instant messenger or email
  • Short pre-recorded video: Great for training sessions with screenshots when live training isn’t practical

Keeping up morale and finding creative ways to interact helps to keep teams motivated and acting as a functioning, cohesive unit. These efforts will continue to bear fruit when everyone heads back to the office.