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5 Tips for Remote Team Building

We live in an increasingly digital world, which has allowed many of us greater flexibility in where and how we work. According to a study published by IWG, around 70 percent of professionals telecommute at least one day a week, and 53 percent work remotely for at least half the week.

While more freedom can lead to better job satisfaction, remote teams can suffer in other ways. Without in-person direct communication, relationships become weaker, which can lead to a fractured team. That’s why it’s important to plan team-building activities that focus on nurturing those relationships. After all, a healthy, cohesive team leads to better, more cohesive events.

Here are a few ways to try team building with remote workers.

remote team meeting in front of large screen

1) Make time for chatting.

In-office teams have the opportunity to chitchat throughout the day, whether it’s in the parking garage or in the kitchen. Remote groups don’t have those interactions, so you have to be more intentional about creating moments that allow for chatting. Try building in five minutes of small talk at the beginning of video conferences, asking a few questions about individuals’ weeks round-robin style, to facilitate personal connections. Or, if your team uses Slack, create a channel for personal comments (just be mindful that activity here stays at a healthy, not distracting, level).

2) Try a tech solution.

Companies such as Prelude offer cloud-based virtual team building tools that can help foster trust and improve performance. They can be tailored to your company’s individual goals, and don’t require any more equipment than a computer and Internet connection.

woman having meeting on laptop

3) Encourage coffee meetings.

Pair team members off into teams of two and send them out on a virtual coffee date. Provide each with a gift card to a coffee shop in their local neighborhood, where they can go with their laptop and have a brainstorm meeting over a video call while sipping their cups of joe.

4) Host a virtual party.

Remote team members can feel left out of typical office gatherings, whether it’s an annual holiday party or a chili cook-off. The next best solution? Hold parties virtually: think a costume day for Halloween, or a company book club, where everyone gets to show and tell via video conference.

group of people having a retreat dinner outside

5) Have a retreat.

Event planners know the importance of face-to-face interaction—it’s why events are a $4 billion industry. If your budget permits, aim to plan a regular in-person retreat for your team, whether it takes place quarterly, biannually or annually. As great as technology tools are in providing us ways to work remotely, there’s no substitute for actual human interaction. The effects of an in-person get together for remote teams can have a long-lasting positive impact.

While some of these mistakes may seem like common sense, you’d be surprised at how many event planners don’t consider them on a regular basis. To help you avoid costly mistakes, the best thing is to consider working with an experienced event planning agency. We’ll work together with you, keeping your company’s best interests (and budget) in mind, to pull off a fabulous event that doesn’t cut into your bottom line—or your sanity. Ready to work with one of the top 50 event planning companies in the country? Reach out to us today by emailing Contact@thevibeagency.com.

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