Six Ways to Bond Remote Teams
One of the many revealing truths that have been unearthed by the pandemic is the importance of keeping good team morale. It can be a challenge to develop and maintain good team morale when you have remote teams.
The pandemic has presented many challenges for workers, and adjusting to the demands of remote working is often a steep ask for employees who are accustomed to the office lifestyle.
With many teams separated by distance and still unable to deal with internal issues face to face, it’s critical that we’re able to maintain strong bonds and keep our employees smiling in order to adjust to the new normal.
For business leaders looking to support morale, keep their teams working collaboratively, and maintain their company culture, communication and social activities are key. So, here are six ways that you can bring your team together.
1 – Zoom Yoga
Yoga for team building is not a new concept. Teaching your team simple yoga moves like the downward dog, and child’s pose can be highly beneficial for stress management, and overall health. In fact, YogaJournal.com lists as many as 38 benefits. So, go ahead and choose a small break in the day to hold an optional yoga class via Zoom or Teams and allow your team the chance to take a deep breath.
2 – Coffee Breaks for your remote teams
A common complaint among remote workers is one of a blurry work-life balance. It’s easy to become distracted and end up working late into the evening, or eating into days off to meet your demands. For workers with children or other responsibilities, this can be even more pronounced. One way to combat this is through good diary management, but also by encouraging regular coffee breaks. Scheduled coffee breaks can also be a perfect moment for an informal catch-up call where you can cut the work chat and strengthen bonds.
3 – Team games
Along with coffee breaks, employees often miss some impromptu fun with their team. You can replace Friday bar drinks with a virtual quiz, or test your best poker face with a Zoom version of online poker. For added incentive, you could play for money or prizes, but as explained by Poker.org, you don’t always have to play with real money.
4 – Playlists
We know that music is pleasurable, but it may also be a way to enhance our social connections. According to research by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), when we try to synch with others musically (even when that person is not visible to us) we tend to feel positive social feelings towards them. As a business leader, you can capitalize on this by creating a collaborative Spotify playlist. Employees can add their favorite tracks, share new discoveries and ultimately march to the same tune as their colleagues.
5 – Pet Pics
Another popular endorphin booster is our pets. VeryWellMind.com explains how scientific evidence from psychological research proves that viewing certain animal pictures can combat stress and make us happier. While a bring your pet to work day may be off the cards, you can still encourage employees to include their pets on team calls, and in group chats.
6 – Group Chats with your remote teams
In the past, some business owners have been skeptical about encouraging online communications between colleagues. Fears over distracting email threads, and the potential for arguments have slowed down what should be a natural evolution of our work communications.
Yet, group chats are becoming more popular in the age of remote work. While WhatsApp and Facebook chat groups may press a little too close to home for most workers, tools like Slack can prove to be the perfect fit.
With Slack, you can create channels such as #memetime and #recipes where employees can test their gif game, and share their favorite meal-time treats, alongside project focused channels for more regular work discussion.
Maintaining employee morale during a global crisis is challenging, but it’s not impossible. By employing your efforts to improve communication, strengthen bonds, and allow your employees to be themselves you can prove to them that you care. Unlock your team’s potential with these six tips, or read Small Business Coach‘s advice on further remote work solutions.