Whether you work from home as part of a team or own a business while working remotely, it can be hard to feel connected. You might have few opportunities to come together in person, or you may be part of a purely online workforce where no one has the chance to meet.
Whatever your situation, it may be helpful to know that being a good team player is possible. You simply need to try taking some of the approaches below.
Though you’re working from home, it doesn’t mean your business needs to look unprofessional, disorganized, and unlike a ‘real’ workplace. By working in virtual offices, your entire workplace can look and function just like any other.
Virtual offices involve using a business address for mail-forwarding while also having reception services, document handling, and even some secretarial support. These can all add to your professionalism, even if you answer emails from your sofa while lounging in your pajamas.
Take Part in Team-Building Activities
It’s easy to feel isolated and tucked away in your own little bubble when you don’t work with your team in person every day. However, one of the best ways to show you’re a team player is by taking part in virtual team-building activities.
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, such activities are becoming more commonplace. You can play virtual escape room games, crime mystery games, open mic talent shows, and more. Some ice breaker activities can also be included in work conference calls.
Work When Everyone Else Is
Though remote working offers plenty of flexibility and work-life balance, there is undoubtedly value in aligning your work schedule with your colleagues. The easier you are to contact, the more straightforward team projects can be.
If there will be times you aren’t available, send a message to all those your absence will affect. Your team will soon learn that you’re otherwise always available to contribute.
Equally as crucial as being easy to contact is taking breaks. When you’re feeling fresh and happy, you are at your best, and studies show that taking breaks can make you more productive.
Working from home can make your work feel a little less structured, so you may see the value in setting aside two 15-minute breaks and a lunch break to make sure you’re always able to give 100% to each task.
Use Communication Platforms
Remote teams can be just as productive and professional as those who meet in person every day. However, to make sure everyone is always on the same page, set up a communication platform.
This can be a team management or project management app that everyone contributes to or even a virtual meeting room. Whichever one you choose, make sure everyone knows it’s where communication takes place to avoid any crucial information being lost.
Don’t Neglect Water Cooler Chats
Life can’t be all work and no play. Though social connections can be much harder to make with people you don’t see, it’s not impossible. In fact, it’s even more imperative for remote workforces to foster an inclusive workplace.
To do this in the digital world, set time aside throughout your working week to engage in light social banter with your coworkers. You never know how much your conversation means to someone who may be struggling with feelings of isolation.
Contributing to a remote team certainly does present challenges, but it’s not impossible. Any of the tips above could be how you reap the most benefits out of the remote working lifestyle while also being a great team player.