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How to build a strong culture with your remote team?

A good team culture is similar to a good sports team. If a team has the right coach and everyone is clear about what they are supposed to do, shares the values and vision, then that team will most likely be "on the winners' podium". A team culture is essential for the growth, productivity and professional development of all team members. Many believe that in order to build a team culture, all members must meet face-to-face, but is this really the case?

How to achieve a strong team culture with remote working increasing year by year?

How to manage daily changes in a hybrid environment and how to build a team culture even remotely?

Everyone in the team is unique

When you build a team, try to take into account its diversity, as diversity (in terms of age, race, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, as well as different education, hobbies, etc.) brings different perspectives. A diverse and inclusive workforce also brings a multitude of skills, abilities and experiences.

Take the time to recruit new team members and support them early and often. Introduce them individually to the rest of the team, for example via video chat.

You start building a team culture when you hire new team members. From the beginning, build the culture with the team, and make sure there is a sense of belonging. Our programme Adaptive leadership can help you with the right approach to remote teams and all the other essentials.

Interconnection is the key

In a hybrid environment, how do you ensure that your team feels connected and fully engaged?

The first step to achieving this is to create communication channels so that your team has ample opportunities to stay connected. In addition to email and phone, you can use Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and more. Once you've set up the means of communication, make sure your team feels included just as if you were all sitting together in the same office. More frequent interaction helps you stay on top of task completion and potential obstacles while helping employees feel supported.

Create ways to offer and engage your team through encouragement and emotional support and promoting wellbeing. It's good to remind yourself what all wellbeing encompasses. It's not just about employee health, but also about relationships, community, work, and finances. Microsoft is tackling improving wellbeing with its new Viva service.

Many employees have experienced a sudden transition to a new lifestyle associated with working from home, where the challenge is to speak confidentially with their management in a non-office environment. So set up virtual office hours for your team members to talk about things beyond their daily tasks. Use this time to discuss long-term professional development goals in a remote setting or anything that makes sense to you to foster inclusion on your team.

Beware of demotivation

In our experience, every company has a system in place to reduce costs. However, it is not necessary to just "tighten belts" to save costs. Focusing on your company and team culture is the right step, as it is your employees who really determine the level of profitability. Take care of every member of the team without distinction. Lack of attention can lead to demotivation and with it comes a negative attitude towards work. Harvard Business Review reports the results of a study that looked at the effect of a toxic person on the rest of the team. These results are proof of the need to focus on each team member individually and foster belonging.

When you have a negative or even toxic member on your team:

  • Employees who experience disrespectful behaviour at work more easily lose their sense of belonging to the company

  • Nearly half of employees experience a decline in performance and intentionally spend less time at work

  • 80% of employees lose time, energy and motivation at work due to negative human behaviour in their work environment

  • 66% are aware of a decline in their performance due to a toxic person in the workplace

  • 38% of employees experience a reduction in the quality of their work

  • 25% of employees who experience disrespect admit that they pass on their frustrations to customers

  • 12% leave their jobs quickly


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