On the Road Again: Keeping Remote Employees Engaged
Managing a team of remote employees, from truckers to dispatchers, requires a little creativity. Remote, virtual, or dispersed teams can still bond with the assistance of various technologies and exercises. Let’s take a look at some of the most useful activities and how they work to bring teams together, even when they are geographically separated.
Using Technology to Facilitate Team Growth
The most successful remote teams are usually the ones that have mastered the use of available technologies. In today’s age, this involves using social media, video conferencing, and virtual sharing tools.
- Social media. At the top of the list is social media. The power of social media for remote teams is found in its ability to personalize users and develop deep connections. As an employer, you should create social media groups designed exclusively for your employees. This provides them with an outlet that can be used for off-topic conversation, sharing ideas, and making personal connections. One of the fastest growing corporate social networking sites is Yammer.
- Video conferencing. Thanks to Skype and various other video conferencing services, it’s possible have face-to-face communication with employees – even when everyone can’t be in the same place. Video conferencing is crucial to dispersed teams, as personal, face- to-face conversation is needed for trust and growth.
- Virtual sharing tools. Everyone wants to be able to provide their opinions or have a say in major decisions, but this isn’t always possible when employees operate remotely. Virtual sharing tools come into play in this situation. Whether it’s comprehensive calendars that are made available online, virtual polling software, file sharing platforms, or any number of other technologies, virtual sharing tools are extremely helpful in keeping employees engaged from afar.
Team Building Exercises for Virtual Teams In addition to keeping employees engaged with various technologies, you should also work to build chemistry through unique exercises and activities. While these activities may feel slightly strange at first, they can help tear down walls and facilitate communication. Here are a few ideas:
- Whose office is it? In most physical offices, employees can walk past a cubicle and get a good idea of an employee’s personality. Since remote employees don’t interact in a traditional office space, it’s challenging to get to know people. In this activity, you collect photos from employees and share each image with your team via screen share. Employees then have to guess which office belongs to which employee.
- Fun conference calls. May people do not like conference calls, especially when they are extremely long. As a way of mixing things up, consider starting each conference call with a trivia game and awarding winners with special prizes. This allows employees to discover other team members’ interests and skills.
- Share achievements. Another fun game involves sharing your employees’ big achievements and accomplishments with your team. Start by asking each employee to provide you with any recent announcements (such as the birth of a child, marriage, new licensure, etc.) and then share them on a conference call and ask people to guess who the announcement is related to.
GTG Technology As you can see, staying connected isn’t impossible. At GTG Technology, our TMS solutions can help your team effectively and efficiently operate, regardless of where your employees are. For more information, contact us today.