Company culture can be a potent source of motivation for your team or an equally powerful obstacle to it. Where does yours land, and how can you improve it?
When employees don’t share a physical office, creating a team culture can become challenging. Fortunately, it’s far from impossible. Remote working relies on trust and crystal-clear communication between teammates. The absence of body language, coffee breaks, and 15-minute stand-ups means there’s zero room for ambiguity.
There’s a lot more to building a successful distributed team than adding everyone to Slack, Google Meets, or Workplace. Managed poorly, remote working can lead to isolation, procrastination, and, as countless studies show, even depression.
So what can you do, as a manager or founder, to create an environment of positive behavior, and then continue to grow a positive company culture with a remote team?
Emphasize productivity over actual hours worked.
If you emphasize productivity rather than holding daily meetings to make sure an employee is putting in the time, you’ll see much higher results than what a rigid eight-hour shift would yield. Changing this focus is important, as it helps motivate the employee to overperform. It builds a culture of trust and understanding, unlike a conventional culture of supervision, which embraces fear rather than motivation.
Find good communication software.
The internet has enabled multiple ways to improve efficiency and multiply productivity. Specifically in a work-from-home setup, these tools hold massive value. For any task that takes more time in communication than analysis or implementation, it is a good idea to put in the extra investment for better tech.
Once a week, for 30 minutes to an hour, individuals from different departments at Keyfactor sign up and ‘meet’ via video conference during lunch.
Employees share what’s on their lunch menu and what they’re currently working on in their department. This aims to mirror the office lunchroom, where many cross-functional interactions usually take place.
Don’t force a certain schedule.
Some of our best employees were the ones who were never close to being the best when working during the day. As mentioned in our first point, the flexibility of hours is possible when you focus on tasks accomplished and could help employees attain much higher efficiency. Everyone has different productive hours, so use that to your advantage.
Let everyone know the ‘why’ of the company.
A huge part of a company’s culture is the mission. Everyone in the organization should know what it is and be able to leverage it even within their own lives.
A handy way to make sure everyone on the team knows and believes in the “why” of your company is to involve everyone in major decisions, keeping the framework of decisions closely aligned with the mission.