Motivating Remote Teams: a personal perspective

The Perennial challenge.

Keeping teams motivated, engaged and aiding staff development and retention has always been a challenge in the corporate world. There are an enormous range of activities, games or team challenges… call them what you will ……available in every country market.

Equally, there are an enormous range of opinions on the value Team-building exercises. An article in Forbes stated they “are pointless and even insulting to your team members, because…… “

However, a UK news site claims “On average companies will spend a staggering £305 per employee on activities that will boost moral”

Nothing new in that divergence of opinion… but really not important now….It’s all change .. and in my opinion based on 28 years of experience helping to motivate teams, it will be a long-term change.

The Immediate challenge.

Be kind. Be helpful. In parts of Europe we are into week 4 of remote/virtual/home working others are just a week into this new world. I am told that some organisations have adapted brilliantly, most are still struggling to help engage their people in a new working environment. It does take time to embrace this type of change.

Immediate solution

Be relevant, understanding and helpful in letting individuals find their way. Once your colleagues are as settled and comfortable as their cats, dogs and children allow…. then its time seek out whether appropriate solutions are available in the marketplace. (I will come back to this)

Specifically, we need to help them re-engaged with their colleagues, teams and employer and equally importantly, help relieve the sense of isolation and for some, loneliness. Never forgetting that new team members need extra help in these circumstances. 

To re-create some team spirit, many ingenious folks have set up WhatsApp/face time groups where they share: virtual tours around their “new” home office, menus of the day, a remote coffee break etc. Great but can often be reliant on one person to be the spark. Soon it is another task on an ever growing “remote” list.   

The motivating solution

As mentioned, there are 1000’s of team building-training companies worldwide. Many of whom will find it hard to pivot. For one reason. Immediate access to effective tech solutions to engage teams.

Those who do, have an amazing opportunity. The first to market advantage. 

From the conversations I have had with my network; (transparency: we partner with Wildgoose Events UK) Lots of Virtual Team Events are, already, being run all around the world and with many more planned. Essentially, this is a product and marketplace that didn’t seem to exist 2 weeks ago.

How is this possible so quickly?

By adapting an existing app, which has been used very successfully in an outdoor or meeting room environment, to the virtual world. Offering intuitive tech that achieves most organisations current objective: to create a sense of belonging whilst having fun and having a bit of a break together (virtually!). (see our website for more info)

This is a brave, new and very different world for all of us. A time of transformation but also opportunity. I believe lessons learnt over the next few months, will adjust not only working methods and environments but will also, fundamentally, change how companies and organisations plan to engage and motivate their ever-growing remote teams.

Hope this very personal perspective was relevant and useful. Always happy to hear your point of view.

Let’s all continue to do our best to keep our community healthy and positive!

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