Tips To Stay Collaborative When Working From Home

8 min. read

The secret to effective teamwork doesn't disappear when we're not sharing a physical space; it just takes a little tweaking and a pinch of creativity!

Working from home has quickly become a staple for many companies and employees, offering incredible perks that most of us wouldn't want to give up. But it's not all pajamas and flexible hours; the shift away from the office has brought its own set of hurdles, especially when it comes to staying in sync with your team. You might be wondering how to keep the collective spirit alive when your colleagues feel like just faces on a screen.

The good news is that the secret to effective teamwork doesn't disappear when we're not sharing a physical space; it just takes a little tweaking and a pinch of creativity! At Amazing Workplace, we’ve spent several years perfecting our Employee Happiness Management System (EHMS)™ to help you do just that. From setting clear expectations to leveraging the right tools, there are plenty of strategies to ensure you and your team stay connected and on top of your game, even from the comfort of home.

Let's dive into how you can keep the wheels of teamwork turning seamlessly with our tips to stay collaborative when working from home.

Utilize Teamwork Tools

Working from home doesn't mean you're on an island. With a wide range of shared tools, you can stay in sync with your team and keep productivity high. Here are a few you should consider:

  • Project Management Software: Tools like Trello, Asana, or Jira help you track project progress. You can see tasks, deadlines, and updates at a glance.
  • Document Sharing and Collaboration: Google Workspace and Microsoft Office 365 offer real-time document editing. Share your work with teammates and work on files simultaneously.
  • File Storage and Sharing: Services like Dropbox or Google Drive make it effortless to store, share, and manage your files online.
  • Virtual Whiteboards: Tools like Miro or Jamboard enable remote brainstorming sessions, making it a breeze to share ideas visually.

Now, let’s look at some tips for utilizing these tools:

  • Stay consistent with the tools you choose; jumping between too many can cause confusion
  • Ensure all team members are comfortable with the tools — a quick tutorial will help!
  • Regularly update your status or availability across platforms to minimize disruptions

Remember, these tools are designed to make your life easier, so take advantage of their features to enhance your remote working experience.

Establish Clear Communication Channels

Speaking of collaborative tools, setting up dedicated communication channels is crucial when working from home. These platforms will serve as your virtual office space where you can connect with your team. Here’s what we suggest:

  1. Select Your Main Platforms
  • Chat: Use apps like Slack or Microsoft Teams for real-time messaging.
  • Email: For non-urgent, formal communications. Consider Gmail or Outlook.
  • Video Calls: Zoom or Google Meet are effective for meetings that need visual interaction.

  1. Create Specific Groups/Channels:
  • Topics: Each team or project should have its own channel to keep discussions focused.
  • Updates: Have a dedicated channel for announcements to ensure everyone stays informed.

  1. Define Communication Norms:
  • Responsiveness: Set expectations for response times during work hours.
  • Status Updates: Regularly update your status (online, away, busy) to avoid miscommunication.

Some of our other suggestions include the following:

  • Schedule daily or weekly meetings to ensure consistent dialogue and progress check-ups
  • Use shared calendars, like Google Calendar, for visibility on team availability
  • Clearly document all important discussions and decisions in a central, accessible location like Google Drive or Dropbox

Remember, clear and consistent communication is the backbone of remote teamwork. Establishing these channels and practices will help maintain a cohesive and engaged team, no matter where you are.

Encourage Virtual Team-Building Activities

One of our favorite tips to stay collaborative when working from home is to encourage remote team building because working from home doesn't mean you have to lose the team spirit! Keeping things lively and ensuring everyone feels part of the crew is important. Engage in virtual team-building activities that bring out your team's collective energy and camaraderie.

Here are some of our favorites:

  • Online Icebreakers: Kick off meetings with quick, fun questions. Think “two truths and a lie” or “share your favorite meme.” It gets everyone talking and laughing!
  • Virtual Workouts: Stay healthy together by organizing group exercise sessions. Yoga, aerobics, or a playful competition with fitness apps can do wonders for team bonding.
  • Group Lunches via Video Calls: Schedule a weekly lunch where everyone eats together virtually. It's a relaxed setting for casual conversations, like a cafeteria hangout.
  • Gaming Sessions: Merge work and play with online multiplayer games post-work hours. It's an exciting way to build relationships!
  • Book/Movie Clubs: Start a club where you choose a book or a movie to enjoy and discuss. It nurtures a shared experience beyond work tasks.

Prioritize Flexibility and Adaptability

In the remote work environment, it's essential to stay flexible. Keep the following in mind:

  • Your schedule might need to shift around shared tasks and meeting times. Be open to changing up your usual nine-to-five pattern if it means better syncing up with your team.
  • Adapt your workspace to your evolving needs. One day, you might require a quiet corner for focus; another, an open area for virtual meetings. A balance between a static home office setup and various mobile spots around your house to keep your environment stimulating and responsive.
  • Remember that flexibility in work arrangements is a two-way street. Offer the same flexibility to others that you’d appreciate for yourself. This builds a collective effort to adapt and overcome the unique challenges of remote collaboration.

Employee Happiness Management System (EHMS)™: Empowering Remote Teamwork and Happiness

In the age of remote work, your team's partnership and happiness are crucial. Meet the Employee Happiness Management System (EHMS)™.

Why EHMS? With cutting-edge AI, it tracks and analyzes your team's well-being, providing indispensable insights. It's like a happiness barometer, pinpointing what works and what needs a boost. Here’s what else you’ll love:

  • Real-time Analytics: Quickly see how your team's feeling with up-to-the-minute data.
  • Communication Charts: Understand the flow of dialogue and its effectiveness.
  • Engagement Metrics: Measure the vibe of your virtual workspace.
  • Virtual Team Builders: Interactive exercises to keep your team bonded, even from afar.
  • Individual Support: Custom care for every team member, ensuring no one feels left behind.
  • Productive Interventions: Just-in-time actions to uplift spirits and cooperation.

It's not just about work; it's about creating a space where happiness is the norm and productivity follows. Stay connected, feel supported, and keep that team spirit high with EHMS!

Unlock the Power of Remote Collaboration with EHMS

If there’s just one takeaway from these tips to stay collaborative when working from home, it’s that the right tools can make the experience seamless and productive. Amazing Workplace’s EHMS (Employee Happiness Management System) offers innovative solutions to help bridge the communication gap and foster a strong, supportive environment.

Ready to revolutionize your remote teamwork? Contact us today to set up a demo and see how EHMS can seamlessly integrate into your team structure!