You find yourself managing a team of people who work from multiple remote locations. How do you do you supervise and lead these employees to meet your organization’s goals? These key tips will give you some tools to keep your virtual team motivated, feel like they are part of a team and focused on success!

Set clear goals with employees

Goals and deliverables should be clearly stated, including key dates and tasks that must be completed. This keeps virtual employees focused on goals they need to complete and still allows them to benefit from the autonomy and flexibility that often comes with a virtual workplace.

Create varied channels for communication

There are numerous ways to ensure that virtual employees can casually interact with other team members, whether it is for a quick message or a short video chat. Choose a core platform like Zoom, Google Hangouts, Slack or Skype where employees can count on group members being present while working.

Use a platform for sharing resources and job tracking

Google Docs, Basecamp, or Dropbox are all examples of ways that virtual teams can collaborate, manage projects and have full access to team resources and information.

Meet in person periodically

Virtual employees and teams still need to create real relationships. As a supervisor, make it a priority to meet periodically with team members in person. Even if you are managing a full team of virtual employees from many locations, meeting together in person quarterly or twice a year can be critical to building relationships and trust between people.

Build relationships

Take the time to get to know your employees beyond their role at work. This may sound simple, but in a virtual environment you may need to make an extra effort to know people’s family, hobbies, motivations and struggles because there is no ‘water cooler’ to meet by and talk about the weekend. Motivational notes, birthday cards, and compassion and empathy during tough times matter just as much for virtual employees as they do for those working down the hall from your office.

Additional Resources:
Managing Virtual Teams: Ten Tips
Top 15 Tips To Effectively Manage Remote Employees
Making Virtual Teams Work: Ten Basic Principles