Remote Project Management: Expert Tips to Get it Right
The concept of employees working in a remote environment isn’t entirely new. However, it is only recently that the idea had started to take off. It was made possible - thanks to the advent of new and advanced technologies. They allowed workers in various fields to fulfill their responsibilities from anywhere globally, be it their own home or somewhere halfway across the globe. While the adoption rate was gradually growing, people and companies remained hesitant until the coronavirus pandemic came along. Once COVID-19 hit and caused most countries and businesses to shut down their premises, the only way out of the problem was remote work. And as the virus rages on and people continue to avoid travel as much as possible, this much has become clear: Remote working is here to stay.
Then the focus is rightly put on the management of the concept; after all, working from outside the office remains a relatively novel concept, one that we are still coming to grips with. Thankfully, there is one element that can help companies and managers wrap their heads around the idea. They continue to help their employees be as productive as they would be in the office under normal circumstances: Remote project management. The concept ensures that the project stays on track and it delivers quality results, no matter if your ability to work under the same roof is restricted due to COVID 19 or due to geographical distance.
Now, here are some remote project management tips to ensure that your team can continue to be as effective as ever and ensure projects’ success.
1. Keep track of communication’s effectiveness: There is no denying that communication is the most effective in person. It is because communication via digital means and phone calls are prone to misinterpretation and more. Hence, it is vital to keep an eye on communications with the project’s team. You must avoid emails and, instead, use proven tools. Furthermore, the moment you see the scope for improvement, be quick to introduce the requisite changes as well.
2. Set out specific goals: It is a general requirement, but it is rendered even more critical when the team is not working out of the same premises. And, it is because the success of the project is highly dependent on all the stakeholders and team members being on the same page about various aspects of the project and the work involved. An excellent place to start would be to set out weekly goals and adapt the approach based on the project’s requirements.
3. Be receptive to feedback: As you know, feedback is vital for, well, pretty much everything. Hence, it is essential that managers are also open to feedback from their teams and honestly. It means you can’t be selective about which aspects of the input you heed to. And it would also be a good idea not to get defensive. Hence, encourage employees to share feedback and practice active listening.
4. Boost team morale: No matter how great a fit your team may be for the project, the fact remains that evolving circumstances can take a toll on their ability to deliver what is expected of them. To prevent such fatigue and loss of morale, one must foster an environment that allows employees to do well. To that end, one must make an effort to get to know employees, recognize their contributions, and reward their efforts whenever possible.
There are seeming drawbacks when teams operate remotely, such as the inability to communicate effectively, foster interpersonal relationships, and more. However, with the right strategies, one can easily overcome these apparent issues. So, as noted in the above tips, be sure to focus on your team members, get to know them and their problems to help them perform to the best of their abilities.
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