Remote culture, how to deal with it

By Henning Sohlman Lund | Company Culture

Mar 24
Remote Culture

Remote Culture

When it comes to remote culture in teams, culture is a huge topic. Of course you know that with co-located teams it is easier to build a sustainable culture.

So what should you as a leader think different about your employees to grow the culture in remote teams?

Things to consider when you just see them in a video meeting as best?

  • How to protect their health and personal safety. Covers company insurances that employees work from home(wfh)?
  • Do they get the help they need? It is a huge difference with Extroverted and Introverted people about asking for help and especially when most of the day they are totally alone.
  • Do they know what is expected of them? Not everyone has routine work assignments. Many have jobs where they receive ad hoc assignments from many different in the company.
  • How do they feel about the covid-19 pandemic? Maybe the 5 minute mandatory conversation is not a time-waster?
  • How and what to communicate. Remember that the small talk at the coffee machine is gone.
  • Do they work the normal work hour or more? When you are near your workplace, it can be easy to work more than the hours allocated. “I should just do the one thing that takes ten minutes (which became closer to an hour)”

Expect different reaction patterns than the ones you´re used to?

In a remote culture the Leadership skills and the behaviors needed, are different from what´s needed at the office. To change behavior does not happen overnight. Be careful about giving feedback on unwanted behavior. Remote does not make it any easier. Remember that your behavior can also be experienced differently.

Building culture when everyone is remote.

  • Culture is more than Ping Pong and beers on Friday.
  • What can you do instead? Wine lottery, celebrate achievements (even small ones), Friday lunch as a video meeting.
  • Use of MS Teams or Slack as a virtual office with channels for social contact.

Trust is the glue

Trust is the foundation stone that must be present for other things to work. When working remote, trust is just as important, if not more important. It is easy to suspect that someone does not do their job just as well as when sitting in the same office. You should expect that, but they may at times be far more efficient than when in the office. Simon Sinek says: High Performance or High Trust? Everytime you will prefer high trust and medium performance even low performance before toxic people with high performance and low trust. You can see Simon Sinek´s video about the topic here.

Read more about culture and how to measure what matters in your organization

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