If the community has 30,000 people, this typically may mean (according to user activity) that you won’t be able to see or search any messages more than 7 days in the past. As the world battles the Coronavirus pandemic, employees are forced to work from home. Are you thinking about how to stay connected when working remotely? If you have contacts (clients, vendors, colleagues) who are in other countries, WhatsApp (from your work number) is an ideal way to have each other at your fingertips if you have to speak outside of work platforms. Unite your team with daily standups, make progress visible, and reach goals faster—all in minutes a day. I’m part of several online networks of professionals outside my specific work, organization and industry, and this is what has changed my professional life so much since the start of my membership into all of these. Put time in the calendar for having lunch over video with a coworker who used to be your lunch buddy, or, grab some time with a colleague across the country, or across the ocean. Best for remote teams or departments, this communication tool proposes questions that build rapport, and icebreaker questions for new hires. Hopefully your coworkers are fun and want to stay connected with you, and with each other. You cannot just give them a job brief and then disappear. Collaboration, morale, and belonging can all take a hit. This can be done over Slack, where members join a channel, and a book is voted upon, and then a date set by which to finish it and meet. By Pooja Bajaj | 30th Mar 2020. Even if you don’t have time to fully answer an email, I like to reply with a “Hi, I’m reading this and will reply soon – don’t worry!” as to not look like I’m ignoring anyone. If there were ever Slack rules, they would be, “Refrain from ‘blowing up’ channels by adding one-word answers or meaningless contributions.”. The Morning Brew newsletters give us a snapshot of current events in a few different categories. It’s a Slack-y program with a list of members of your organization on the left side and chat space on the rest of the screen. playb/Getty Images. Virtual Dance Party (Recommended) One of the quickest and easiest virtual team building activities is the Virtual Dance Party. The last cool way I like to feel productive and engaged while also seeing friends’ faces is practicing Spanish with friends in Argentina. Podcasts to stay updated with current events, Podcasts to stay updated with web development, technology and photography, how to remove background noise from calls, Subscribe to the Morning Brew emerging tech newsletter, Subscribe to the Morning Brew marketing newsletter, trip around the world while working remotely, How to Set Up a Home Office in a Small Apartment, Best Productivity Tips for Working From Home, Travel Budget Hacks From the @Halfhalftravel Community, 43 Best Photography YouTube Channels to Follow, How to Create a Shared Home Office Space for Two, The Best Cities for Working Remotely and Traveling. They will look for ways to be an ambassador to their company, both with colleagues and customers, and help drive their organization forward. After three hours of painstakingly plowing through mediocre work, I powered down my PC. In March 2018, after coming back from our trip around the world while working remotely, I somehow fell into listening to podcasts. This might have been talking about a new iPhone or a new book that someone read. We may include affiliate links in posts and pages on which we recommend specific products, tours and/or services. 1-800-728-0888 We're doing our part to #flattenthecurve but we are still open for business! Some of us who are dealing with this situation for the first time may run into challenges. Conducting regular check-ins are one of the many ways you can emulate face to face interactions. We're currently traveling full time and capturing as much of our experience as we can. Remote workers have a huge advantage in-office staff don’t: This means you not only have the freedom to work during the hours you’re most productive, but can arrange for flexible childcare during those times as well. Try out “Know Your Team” for bringing social elements to virtual work. I can say the same for the Ladies Get Paid network, which has afforded me opportunities like hosting a webinar about remote work starter tips for women. Start a remote work mentorship program within your organization. WhatsApp is a fine tool to use for reaching clients or work contacts, especially if you have a separate work phone, work phone number or even a Google Fi number. Start meetings on a positive personal note, and commit it to tradition. Take breaks to play an online game with colleagues (if company culture allows). Basking under the flickering glow of the fluorescent lights or basking under a warm sun. While many employees already do some work remotely, many workers and managers are still trying to adjust to this paradigm shift. Getting creative—virtually “It is important to keep the team in positive spirits. A client of mine, whose team of 15 people are now all working from home, established daily 30-minute morning team check-ins to stay connected and on … Here are a few ways you can show your staff you care and help them stay productive and happy. His podcast goes a bit deeper into talking about new technology that comes out. Whether you have just started working from home with a new remote job or you’ve been working remotely for years, it’s true that there can be psychological effects of working from home. While being glued to your work phone, work email or work Slack can be tiring, exhausting and less-than-optimal for mental health, it is part of the remote work hustle. When you work remotely, you can break from your seat for 30 minutes and no one will care. This way, you won’t have to spend an hour looking at multiple people’s houses at a stretch! This can be in the form of one on one meetings with your employees, or as a group to check-in with their progress at work. Anyone can virtually “drop in” (while also eating lunch) and learn about this specialty or skill, with a Q+A session at the end. For our workers who have never worked from home, social isolation is deeply felt. by. I’ve been ending my day (or therefore starting my evening) with a FaceTime call more and more. With a phone call, you can get your point across, make sure your tone is not misunderstood and you can put a voice to your name. Have a post-work cooking competition among teams or coworkers. Before the coronavirus outbreak began to unfold, “43% of US employees worked remotely at least some of the time,” according to Gallup. Avoid micromanaging. With many employees working remotely, the traditional ways of recognizing a team, as you mentioned in your question, may not infeasible. by. At Formstack, where Jell was founded, the entire team relies on tools like Slack in addition to the company’s own daily standup software. 3 ways to keep employees connected while working from home Image Component needs to be configured. The Vergecast is hosted by Nilay Patel and Dieter Bohn. Create custom emojis that have to do with your organization’s vernacular or trusted vocabulary words. From birthdays and work anniversaries to personal accomplishments, you can recognize your employees by sending out virtual cards or hosting a virtual team event to celebrate. Invest in a laptop stand, to get your laptop propped up and get your camera at the same height as your head. The world of traditional, 9-to-5 work is slipping away, according to Global Workplace Analytics and numerous other studies: 5 million employees (3.6% of the workforce) currently work-at-home half-time or more. The little engagement employers received has now … 19. Keeping your virtual office door open is more of a mindset and something to say, but it’s worth keeping in mind. Matti Haapoja and Peter McKinnon run this show. For companies that are used to a traditional office environment, it can be tempting for leaders to check in constantly to make sure employees are on task while they're working from home. I'm the editor of the Jell blog. Keeping your workforce focussed and engaged is key to having a positive experience of home working. As employees around the world embrace “the World’s Largest Work-From-Home Experiment,” they’re also experiencing the unprecedented levels of stress that come with working remotely under uncertain circumstances.. 8 Easy & Creative Ways to Keep Remote Employees Engaged . It can be for fun, or competitive with scoring. This is especially true for those of us balancing work and childcare. You want to be heard, and also hopefully “seen” (on video)! Here are ten ways you can make sure they're feeling appreciated and part of the team, even though they're working from home! Your employees’ physical and mental state is critical when it comes to staying productive while working from home. Pod Save America brings humor to American political events and the hosts are very enjoyable. Start a joke-of-the-day or video-of-the-week email chain or channel. Don't let your remote work from home employees feel a lack of appreciation! Contrary to what you might think, the key to steering clear of these potential fears is not adding more meetings, emails and regularly scheduled check-ins to the calendar. It’s been proven that spending time on non-work activities with coworkers strengthens working relationships. As employees around the world embrace “the World’s Largest Work-From-Home Experiment,” they’re also experiencing the unprecedented levels of stress that come with working remotely under uncertain circumstances.. Even my gym offers weekday drop-in daycare from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. And in some cities, a new coworking with childcare trend is starting to take shape. Make use of instant messaging like Skype and Slack to always stay on the loop. No supervisor watching your seat. 4 Ways to Keep Employees Engaged While Facing a National Crisis. 1922 shares Note: It’s been 4 years since we wrote this article—Whoa time flies! It’s been proven that spending time on non-work activities with coworkers strengthens working relationships. With Zoom, there are options like a Q & A box for the attendees, break-out sessions (I was in my first auto-break-out-session in a Zoom event this week), panelist and admin abilities and screen sharing. We're an NYC-based couple who work remotely. There are lots of things to keep in mind when video-ing coworkers, like looking presentable and ready, and having background noise eliminated. Listen to (or watch) The Colin and Samir podcast. I like all these things, but I also appreciate my flexible work-from-home schedule. When you acknowledge your employees for their outstanding work on time, they feel rejoiced for their … The key is finding ways to capitalize on newfound freedoms to stay motivated, productive and engaged. To combat feeling lonely while working from home, we’re fortunately blessed with the type of technology that makes interacting with another real person easy, at the click of a button. Pick up the phone to make a call, and hear someone’s voice! You’ll hear relevant news in the tech world and opinions on things like phones, apple devices and more. Now I rarely worked conventional hours. It releases chemicals to the brain that boost productivity as well. Get weekly updates with proven, actionable tips to help you lead your team. I personally really like Slack. In addition, you can direct message anyone, in order to have a one-on-one conversation, and from there, you can create smaller dialogues among more than two people if you’re talking about a topic or have something to discuss. “Work-life balance is one of the most important things employers can do to help employees not only stay healthy and fit, but keep them engaged day by day. Sam Campbell. To keep your employees’ spirits up while they’re working from home, it’s crucial to continue celebrating employee milestones. If your team isn’t using the right tools to communicate and collaborate effectively then you’re already starting off on the wrong foot. Slack also makes communication streamlined, because you can react to a message or announcement with an emoji, rather than ‘blowing up’ the amount of text that would be entailed by replying with, “Great!” or “I agree!”. Surprise someone with a ‘real phone call.’. Google Calendar is life, as expressed in our guide to most useful apps we use. What if cooking was graded by how it looked, and not how it tasted? I’ve had interviews, meetings and chats all over Google Hangouts. A great idea for dispersed companies with virtual teams is starting a company-wide project. These links are always disclosed, and help us run our site. Engaging remote employees means that at times, you are going to have to work doubly hard to keep them engaged. I have a group chat with my high school friends and we finally figured out that you can hit “FaceTime” in your iMessages and it sends an invitation for a video call to everyone in the chat. Reach us 9am-6pm for normal business. I got a good night’s sleep and when I woke at 6 a.m. the next day, the ideas were suddenly flowing. Although I don’t do it often, if I’m talking in-depth with a friend over Instagram (usually started by chit-chat about a photo! I’ve used Donut both in person and virtually, and have made some cool connections. Always keep the channels of communication open and interact with them frequently. Yes, some productivity authorities swear by those tips. You’ll see quickly how much has changed (for example, the word “teleconference”… What’s that?). Especially when you become remote, keeping in touch with coworkers in a phone call helps avoid misunderstandings. Working from home can have many benefits for both employees and employers, from savings on commercial rent to better flexibility in work. Institute a monthly online lunch-and-learn. On-Demand – 60 min. Through your communication, whether it’s via email, text, phone, chat or social media, here’s when and how to communicate: Slack is popular with tech companies, startups and online communities. Remote work arrangements are not new, but because they may be unfamiliar to some employers and managers, there is an adjustment period as teams begin navigating this new way of conducting business. To me, that’s one of the coolest gifts that technology has given us. and has a lot of options for an organization or network of people. You can also receive phone calls to Teams, if your organization permits, and therefore, you can receive voicemails there as well. Because I’m transparent about my availability and communicate daily on goals, there’s never been an issue with my early morning work hours. Adobe XD’s Wireframe podcast reveals stories surrounding user experience and the art of design. The ‘book club’ itself can take place in a virtual meeting over Zoom, attended by every member of the club on a month or semi-monthly basis. If you plan to have a video call, or if you’re expected to dial into the team meeting with video, make sure your home office setup is in tip-top shape! We named this activity Call of the Champions as a fun way to recognize the heroic roles that participants play in making a virtual call fun. Figuring out how to stay connected while working from home? It’s likely that when your employees gathered in the office every day, they found ways to celebrate achievements together. The key to staying connected while working remotely is to spend time with your staff. Work. With Netflix Party mode, you can simultaneously stream with friends: there’s a chat window and play/pause option, so that everyone’s synced. If you’re working from home with your partner, be sure to give your significant other, or roommate, some space when taking a video call, so that the background of the call remains professional. Here’s a list with some highlights about what to expect from each podcast. Lastly, you can join a Skype for Business meeting by simply clicking the “Join Meeting” button, whether on desktop or mobile. If you’ve followed our story, you know that we love to talk about coffee. There are several ways to recognize employees, one of which is a face-to-face meeting. It’s so seamless. Understanding the basics of employee engagement. Be all over Google Calendar, or your organization’s calendar system. Be collaborative by starting custom tags, color-coding and setting accurate deadlines. Many organizations have turned to new work-from-home policies to keep employees safe. Social media is power, especially in the creative world! You’re not alone! “Lunch” is just a placeholder! You’ll hear a conversation about some of the latest news in web development. Keep them engaged with Recognition. You can do yoga, chair stretching, or even a meditation session to keep everyone fit and healthy. If you want to improve your video quality, check out this unique webcam setup from Moment. I’ve always found it challenging to find news that I want to read about, and then sit down to actually read about it. WhatsApp is a chat app that I was introduced to back when I lived in China as an expat, around 2011. We created this blog to share some of the knowledge and experience that we have around travel and photography. Donut will randomly pair you, ask an icebreaker question like, “If I were a superhero, I’d be…” and then it checks in with you a week later to make sure you “met,” however the meeting took place. Well, it might be far away, depending on how far you are from said office, but it doesn’t mean the chit-chat is dead. Where I live, it’s easy to get in a 40-hour work week with a combination of drop-off playcare, preschool, learning centers and part-time babysitters. Video chatting over Instagram is one of the newcomer video methods, in addition to video via WhatsApp, Google Hangouts, Facebook messenger and more. I like this because it keeps you up-to-date with new phones, computers, gaming consoles and more. For companies that are used to a traditional office environment, it can be tempting for leaders to check in constantly to make sure employees are on task while they're working from home. So well, in fact, that I sometimes think smartphone voice recording apps were created specifically for mid-afternoon jogs. Zoom is a video platform that allows professionals to meet, and even hold conference-style sessions, over video. Most people we know also use it for large friend groups to keep in touch. WhatsApp first started as being the ideal way to send someone a text message ‘over the Internet’ if you were both in other countries. Tweet. I subscribe to MKBHD on YouTube and he’s my go-to source for tech news. The thing is, employees are now working from home full time until further notice. The Economist is one of the podcasts I try to listen to because it exposes me to topics I usually wouldn’t hunt down in my regular news. But for every employee who is thriving in their cozy new workspace, there are at least two workers who struggle to face each day with limited human interaction. While many of us work from home at least part of the time, we still rely on rhythms and core hours that are built around our physical presence at the office. SHARES . In this article, we’ll cover the baselines of remote work communication, the apps and tools that get you ready for keeping in touch while working from home and a list of great ways to stay connected with coworkers, clients and friends. 10 ways agencies are keeping their remote employees engaged Shops show off home offices through MTV 'Cribs'-style tours, plus lots of online … “You won’t ever sit in traffic again,” they claimed. If you need to block out any background noise, check out our guide on how to remove background noise from calls. Create a Zoom meeting link and send it out to clients or vendors, who can ‘swing by’ your online happy hour and drop by for a chat. Working from home is becoming a necessity in today’s modern workplace. 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