10 Signs Your Remote Teams Aren’t Collaborating Effectively And How To Fix It.

Your teams are having too many meetings.

Have you ever had days where you jump from meeting to meeting with little to no time for a break? Sometimes, this can actually be a symptom of poor communication and lack of collaborating between remote workers. 

Typically, your team shouldn’t have to meet several times a week. In fact, plenty of meetings could just be an email. 

keep in mind when scheduling a meeting that every person you invite needs to be there. If not, you could be wasting peoples time if their attendance is optional simply let them know. Plus, think about the length of your meetings if it can be shorter make it shorter if it can be an email make it an email. 

It’s important to be intentional when planning remote meetings.

The digital body language is all off.

When communicating on video, it’s easy to forget about your body language and that of those around you.

It’s important to keep in mind that on camera, nothing is subtle, and it can feel like you’re under the spotlight. This means you have to pay even more attention to your body language: maintain eye-contact, speak clearly and keep your setting as professional as possible.

There are team members not contributing during meetings.

If your team meetings are always dominated by the same people speaking up it could be a sign of poor communication. 

It could mean that there are people within your team that don’t feel comfortable talking during meetings.

While it’s important to consider that some people are more introverted than others, consider ways of including your whole team in discussions.

Your team isn’t collaborating.

Do you collaborate when the opportunity arises? From a management perspective, do you notice when members of your team aren’t collaborating?

If collaboration isn’t coming naturally to your team, it could be that they don’t feel Comfortable reaching out to each other or they don’t have the tools they need to collaborate effectively. 

You could introduce systems such as Trello to keep track of your assignments with this tool you can easily collaborate with other team members when you need to lean on each other for expertise. 

There’s a lack of communication throughout the day.

Being able to go days at a time without talking to other co-workers is a big red flag That your team isn’t communicating well. 

The more you talk to your colleagues the more trust you’ll have. This makes it easier to reach out when you need help or a bit of extra expertise. That’s why it’s important to create an environment where your team feels comfortable communicating throughout the day even if it is just to send a GIF into the group chat. 

Magazine why you don’t want to inundate your team with messages checking in every so often is a great way to build camaraderie and encourage team collaboration. 

Your meetings lack structure or agenda. 

Without an agenda or meeting structure you won’t be communicating effectively during your meetings making collaboration even more difficult. 

Meetings should always be organised and structured so that they are productive having an agenda will help you keep things on track. 

You may even want to schedule in 5-minutes of informal chat before the meeting gets started this will help team members to self-regulate. 

Wherever possible you should always send the agenda prior to the meeting however this isn’t necessary with regularly scheduled meetings such as an end of week meeting where the expectation has already been set. 

Your team hasn’t built psychological safety.

As part of a remote team, sometimes it can feel hard to feel included. However, the option to be included is so important for your teams’ mental wellbeing. 

When people don’t feel included, they won’t feel comfortable speaking up or collaborating in team projects. 

To build this psychological safety net in a remote meeting make sure you go around giving everyone the opportunity to speak. Try and focus on bigger picture conversations and ask individuals specific questions. 

Additionally, you could also include more ice breaker conversations where everyone has to go around and answer a question. This can help people feel more confident about communicating further along in the meeting. 

Your team aren’t showing their appreciation for each other.

Building connections is the most important part of communication and collaboration. 

One of the easiest ways to do this is to express gratitude for one another. For example, your people should feel comfortable congratulating each other in a group chat. 

You could encourage sending each other birthday cards and celebrating personal achievements or just create an email thread of appreciation.

Expressing gratitude is a great way to renew your energy and creates a safe space for your team. 

Projects are falling behind or through the cracks.

Did you start the year with a plan of all the projects that are due to happen in 2021 but none of them seem to be coming to fruition? Or perhaps you’re unsure of the status of these projects? 

When this happens it’s usually a combination of lack of communication and collaborating between your team members. Alternatively, it could be a lack of technology to facilitate these projects.

Make sure you’re giving your team the best tools possible to collaborate on project management and track progress.

Your team has a high turnover rate.

If you can’t seem to hold on to great people, it could mean that your communication isn’t effective. 

When this starts to happen, it’s important that you speak to your team so that you can figure out what’s working and what isn’t. Create an open discussion where everyone is able to voice their honest opinions without repercussion. 

Working remotely can make collaborating with your team feel harder but it doesn’t have to be that way. If your team still needs a little boost, why not check out these remote working tips.

Published: 10th May 2021

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