Managing isolated team members scattered across geographical locations and time zones is a daunting challenge. You cannot rely on physical interaction in order to keep track of who is doing what. Without a shared office space, it is also much harder to build team culture and cohesion. See here the best forms to manage a remote marketing team.
However, in this day and age, physical proximity is not an absolute must. Propelled into the mainstream by rapid technological advancements, remote working is becoming a prominent trend across the globe. More and more companies are shifting from traditional office environments in order to trim the overheads and get the job done the best way possible.
If you are wondering how to make it work for your organization, here are a few tips.
5 Tips for Managing a Remote Marketing Team
A sound hiring strategy
A recruitment policy goes a long way toward enhancing teamwork and efficiency.
It goes without saying that desirable candidates should have sufficient experience, skills, and talent. But, they also need to fit the culture of the company and relate to its mission. What is more, it is always preferable to collaborate with self-starters that are able to operate independently, without constant hand-holding.
So, to assemble a high-performing team of doers that complement each other, you have to do your homework. Assess the candidates according to strict criteria and in the light of predefined roles and responsibilities. Remember that seasoned freelancers are in their natural habitat when working remotely and the same could be true for marketers that are used to working in agile teams.
Cultivating strong professional and interpersonal relationships is even more important when the only option is to talk screen-to-screen.
Although video chats and calls cannot substitute the warmth of face-to-face communication, they do ward off the feeling of being disconnected and detached. That being said, it would help if you were able to bring remote workers to your headquarters every once in a whole. You can give them insights into company culture history and organize team-building events.
Furthermore, you should increase your employer brand awareness and find ways to motivate remote workers. For example, reward them for good performance and achievements. Apply other in-house engagement techniques to the virtual environment. Show new recruits samples of previous campaigns and stay open to their ideas and suggestions.
Time zone management
Time differences are one of the biggest obstacles on the way to success. They disrupt the workflow and team dynamics. But, there are tactics to overcome this problem and they all revolve around timeshifting and good old time management. Namely, planning and scheduling ahead of time are paramount to putting together a remote workforce that functions like a well-oiled machine.
To make it happen, you may need to adjust your work hours to match those of team members. This can play out by you picking a time of the day that bridges discrepancies or breaking up the day into various time intervals. You can ask people to deliver important tasks (such as content-related stuff) in advance.
Employ cutting-edge software
Taking advantage of modern software is paramount: it can be used to communicate with team members in real-time and keep the projects going.
Popular project management platforms are loaded with all the essential features (chat, reporting, calendars, to-do lists, etc.) that distributed team needs. They allow you to create virtual office space and avoid the pitfalls of miscommunication. They also help ensure that all of the team members are on the same page when it comes to actual work.
There is also a wealth of business communication apps and video conferencing tools worth checking out. Email still does the tick as well, regardless of whether you are miles, states, or continents apart. On the other hand, cloud solutions help you facilitate file uploading and sharing in one central location.
Of course, if you plan on making your remote marketing team agile as well, you will want to check out agile tools that come in different shapes and forms.
Communication is vital
One cannot stress the importance of good and open communication enough.
Apart from official channels, it is a good idea to engage in casual, informal, and random conversations. After all, constant feedback loops tend to minimize if not eliminate guesswork, bottlenecks, and misunderstandings from the workflow. They allow everyone to stay on the right tracks, evaluating the progress and results.
So, use them as an integral part of clear and transparent business processes. Ensure everyone is on the same page and tackle any issues before they get blown out of proportion. This brings us back to the importance of promoting the open culture and related company-wide best practices.
Successful remote marketing team management is a fine art that takes time to master.
Collaboration, productivity, and communication play a pivotal role. They are closely intertwined and their interplay lays the groundwork for vibrant company culture and strong work ethics. So, focus on creating a set of rules, expectations, and clearly-defined roles. Welcome the right people onboard and rally them around your values, goals, and mission.
Make sure to open the lines of communication to stay in touch with each other and everyday goings-on. Use suitable software solutions to transcend the limitations of space and compensate for no face-to-face time. Tap into a limitless talent pool, maximize productivity and make strides toward set goals.