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Make sure your team are still a team, while they work from home

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Make sure your team are still a team, while they work from home

Community Manager
Community Manager
Earlier this year when people began working from home, there was a lot of talk of getting back to normal, or ‘the new normal’, but it’s been half a year, and a lot of people are accepting that the home office is the only office for the foreseeable. And that’s not a problem, but we need to check back in and make sure our team’s working from home situation is still working for them.
 
When it comes to working from home, there’s a learning curve as processes changed. Once everyone on your team is connected, and on the same page, though, it seems to work well. I think anyone who was nervous about productivity has seen that work can really happen anywhere, with the right team. 

If everything’s working with my team, we’re fine, right? 

Well, the head of international research at Dropbox, Jen DiZio, along with Amanda Gail Miller, conducted some fascinating research into the emergent trends in distributed work and it indicates an issue that might build over time. You can see their full findings here, but according to the research, 41% of people find conducting brainstorms more difficult while working remotely. Considering brainstorms are one of the best opportunities for innovative ideas, that’s a big problem.
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Miller says psychological safety is one of the critical factors for creating the “healthy” connective tissue that’s improves this kind of collaboration. Without having the opportunity to build mutual trust, it’s harder for teams to feel productive and impactful. 
 
“We also learned that within a distributed organization, that feeling of trust and safety naturally frays over time,” says Miller. “Historically remote companies compensate for that by regularly scheduling team building off-sites where people can bond and build that muscle.”
 
So, without off-sites or office excitement, how can you make sure your team is feeling good, feeling safe to share ideas and having a good time? Whether it’s building in remote social events, breaking the work routine with something out of the ordinary, like a hack week or new project or even a good old fashioned team building event - it’s important to make sure you’re team still feels like a team and not just people who work together. 
 
Are you keeping in touch with your team in more than just feedback comments? 

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