Leading remotely – a talk with Flaviu

Q: What is the first thing you can do as a leader to create an excellent remote culture?

A: In my opinion, the first thing a leader has to do to create an excellent remote culture is to develop a strong work ethic and to have good communication with the team.

A strong work ethic is essential to success, but everything can fall apart without good communication.

Q: It’s been a year since we have been working remotely or hybrid. Did these changes affect productivity?

A: The productivity results can be described in 3 phases:

Phase 1 – The beginning of WFH

In the beginning, the team’s productivity decreased because it was a new way of working, and every person needed some time to adjust.

Phase 2 – Stabilization 

After the adjusting period, working from home got better productivity results than working from the office.

Phase 3 – Long run

But now, after almost one year, there are signs that the lack of interaction between team members started to affect productivity slightly.

Q: Employees must trust their team lead, supervisor, or anyone else “above” them. How can you get rid of communication barriers between you and your team?

A: By having 1:1 in-person meetings, if possible, to listen and encourage them to have an open and sincere discussion with the leads.

This discussion makes it more to make what is necessary to create a good work environment.

Q: Let’s talk about meetings. Since we no longer work from the office and are not in the same room during the 8 hours, were more appointments necessary?

A: Definitely yes. The efficiency of the face to face communication cannot be replaced so easily by online one.

Q: You have almost 20 employees under your “wings” how did you manage to keep everyone involved?

A: Everything is more accessible when you belong to a team you trust and where a strong work ethic is in place.

As I said before, besides work ethics, communication is the key. Having so many colleagues on the team, it would take too much time to sync with everyone.

Having a good team leader for each department taking care of his colleagues is a great help for me because I can get the pulse of the team’s pulse accessible.

Even like this, I have monthly discussions with each team member because nothing compares to an excellent person-to-person talk.

Q: What other challenges are you facing?

A: It is challenging for a lead to get the true pulse of any team member from an online conversation.

Mostly when having one-on-one meetings, people avoid giving their cameras for different reasons, making it very hard to get more information from the discussion.

Q: How do you and your team celebrate wins in this context?

A: We try to organize activities like hiking, having lunch together, going out, and anything that reunites the team.

Q: Any advice you have for team leaders or project managers?

A: Try to know your colleagues as better as possible and always try to find ways to help them improve. 

And to not forget, try to “buy” as much patience as possible. 🙂

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