Nature & Nurture Creative

Remote Team Building

How to keep Your Team connected while working remotely

Right now a lot of us are learning how to work separately from our teams for the first time.

And while working completely remotely can be a challenge, there are ways to maintain team dynamics and stay connected with coworkers and clients. Our Marketing & Account Strategist, Elise Yost, has been remote working since she came on with us, operating our “Boston office” while the rest of the team works and lives in Keene, New Hampshire. Here are some of her tips for staying connected and keeping teams running remotely.

Connection

Being connected to your team can be more challenging from afar, but it’s a necessity for smooth work

  • Have casual conversations with your team members and know what’s going on in their lives, even if those conversations happen mostly over slack
  • Share gifs, funny videos, interesting articles, yummy recipes etc. Having shared things to talk about besides work is important
  • Social outings and gatherings can happen online. Schedule a team game night
  • Have in-person check-ins every so often (if possible). Team work trips are valuable bonding experiences

Communication

Strong communication is your biggest tool when working remotely

  • Schedule weekly Monday check-ins with your whole team over Google hangouts to go over projects for the week, and have some social check in time as well
  • Don’t limit yourself to only work conversations. You’re not having those spontaneous casual chats in person, so have them over slack instead, or on other calls
  • Get comfortable asking questions and also making independent decisions, your team might not always be on slack to answer you!
  • Self-advocate. It’s harder for your team to know what is going on with you when they don’t see you on a daily basis to pick up on those subtle signals. Speak up when you’re struggling with something

Community

It’s important to develop a community closeby for those times when you can’t be completely connected to your team

  • Join a co-working space – Normally, I work out of the Branchfood space at CIC Boston, which operates as both a co-working space and a place for me to connect with fellow businesses and people in the food industry
  • Join professional groups near you – American Marketing Association is a good one for fellow marketers. I also love Creative Mornings – which has branches in many different cities
  • Attend meetups related to your job/industry – Branchfood hosts monthly community table events, which you can still join remotely via Zoom!

Clients

Meet clients where they are at, even when you can’t meet them in person

  • Have regular check in meetings with clients, ideally over video conferencing so you can pick up on nuances that don’t always come through over email or on the phone
  • Use project management and communication tools that they feel comfortable with. Some may be willing to learn new tools, and others will not be. But either way, use those tools effectively
  • Develop personal connections when it’s appropriate, some clients value it more than others, but it usually will make communications more fun for everyone
  • Keep up to date on their business and industry trends so you can make good suggestions and ask relevant questions
  • Check in with your team before and after client calls when needed. Make sure you’re all on the same page about what the client wants

Tools for The Job

  • Slack – staying completely connected
  • Zoho – project management tool
  • Google Hangouts – video conferencing
  • Google Suite – doc collaboration
  • Horsepaste.com – online codenames game
  • Wetransfer – sharing giant files
  • Online server – files from anywhere