Project management is always a challenge, but it can be especially challenging with a remote workforce. It’s one thing to fly through projects with a room full of teammates collaborating in an office, but it’s another matter entirely to manage tasks remotely. However, it’s still possible to help your team be productive, whether you’re working from your homes or serviced offices. It all comes down to management skills like communication, scheduling, and leadership.
To help you master the art of remote management, here are five industry-leading tips:
Communication Is Key
Communication is an essential part of in-person project management, but it’s even more critical in remote work. From the project’s beginnings to its final victory laps, it’s your job as a manager to communicate the overarching goals, convey your expectations, and provide instructions along the way.
The best way to ensure effective communication is to have regular team meetings and consistent one-on-ones to keep your whole team on track while still providing personal support where necessary.
Trust Your Team
It’s all too tempting to try and micromanage your team when you’re not in the same office. However, you should resist this urge as much as possible. Micromanagement can make your staff feel insecure about their work and ultimately impair their productivity. No one likes feeling like there’s someone constantly breathing down their necks, after all.
It’s best to clarify that you trust your team and give them space to do their jobs effectively. Of course, you’ll still want to offer help and answer questions wherever possible, but your team should know that you have faith in them.
Be Available at All Times
While you should give your employees plenty of space, you’ll also need to ensure that you’re always available to provide guidance and answer questions. Your team will likely need clarification as they work on their projects. As a manager, you should make it clear that you welcome questions and that you’re there to provide help. If you’re always open to providing assistance, this will help your team stay on track, making it simple for your staff to meet their deadlines and exceed your expectations.
Provide Plenty of Feedback to Your Team…
Feedback can be a surprisingly tough art to master: not providing any feedback at all can result in an unfinished or inadequate final product, but too much criticism can crush employee morale. Generally speaking, it’s essential to offer constructive criticism that emphasizes what your team has done well while also highlighting areas for improvement. The right amount of guidance can help your team turn an acceptable project into a resounding success, so make it a top priority to offer the advice your team needs.
…and Stay Open For Receiving Feedback Yourself
At the same time, you must be open to receiving feedback! If your team says that your answers are unhelpful or that you’re difficult to reach, you should always welcome these responses and adjust your work accordingly. If your team sees that you’re open to feedback and change in response to their suggestions, they’ll understand just how much you care about them and the work they’re doing. In turn, this process will boost morale and result in a more engaged workforce, where staff members feel encouraged and happy to put out exemplary work. Is the idea of managing a remote project intimidating you? Keep these five tips in mind, and you’ll have nothing to worry about.