In today's fast-paced business world, many founders and organizations are embracing virtual teams to tap into a global talent pool, while increasing overall efficiency with the ability to lower overhead costs. Many employees are experiencing a new type of freedom and flexibility with the ability to work remotely or in a hybrid system. While virtual teams offer numerous advantages, building strong business relationships with team members in different time zones and locations can be challenging. However, with the right strategies and approaches, you can foster trust, collaboration, and positive outcomes in your virtual teams. Here are key strategies to help founders nurture and grow their business relationships.
Effective Communication is Key:
Communication is the foundation of any successful relationship, and virtual teams are no exception. As a founder, it is important to encourage open and transparent communication channels. You can use regularly scheduled monthly video meetings, chat platforms, and email updates to help team members stay connected and coordinated. ”Overcommunicating” important information will ensure that your team is aware and informed. We are more inundated with information and data then ever before so it’s valuable to “overcommunicate” your ideas and expectations clearly.
Set Clear Expectations with Your Team:
Do you have a current organizational flow chart? Does your team know who to contact when a customer concern comes up? Clearly defining roles, responsibilities, expectations as well as Standard Communication Procedures helps to support clear communication. This clarity helps to prevent misunderstandings and ensures that everyone is on the same page regarding project goals, timelines, and the ability to meet deliverables. Additionally, setting clear expectations takes the guess work out of your operational systems. When your team feels clarity and security about their roles this ultimately creates better customer service interactions. Informational gaps create tension and a lack of productivity if not addressed. Many founders are focused on their long-term vision but may not always be successful at communicating the vision with the team.
Trust and Empower Your Team:
Trust is the basis of strong teams. Delegating specific tasks empowers your team members to make better decisions at work. When your team members feel trusted and valued, they are more likely to be motivated and engaged. Trust is the key to engagement. Additionally, trusting your team does not create an absence of challenges. Building trust offers you, the founder, the ability to create cohesiveness, caring, and follow through with your team. Often, we see many founders struggling with empowering others, based on the idea of “It’s my business so I need to do it myself.”
Money Fact - Ask yourself, do you currently have a self-managing business? One of the concepts that we use with our clients is the ability create a “Self-Managed Business” (SMB). This is a business that runs without continuous ownership oversight. Meaning that at some point you will need to work less on day-to-day issues and spend time thinking about the long-term vision as well as enjoy your life more. A SMB allows you as the founder to make more profit, without working all the time. We help our clients to create a Self-Managed Business so that you can enjoy your life more and work less.
Build a Strong and Positive Company Culture:
As the founder, the one action you can take each day is to build a strong and positive culture. Cultivating a sense of belonging, team spirit, and shared values raises the morale and value of your team. Encourage individuals, celebrate your wins and achievements, and promote a positive sense of well-being and trust.
Provide the Right Tools and Resources:
Ensure that your virtual team has access to the necessary tools and resources to perform their jobs efficiently. Invest in professional training, project management tools, and business coaching programs to raise the overall value of your business.
Acknowledge, Celebrate, and Reward Achievements:
Whether it's a simple "thank you" note, additional incentives of days off, or offering a cash bonus, acknowledging your team’s dedication is directly connected to building strong relationships. Recognizing and rewarding your team's accomplishments is easy to do and can often be overlooked.
Be Flexible and Adaptable for Team Retention:
As a business owner, it’s infinitely easier and less expensive to retain quality employees then it is to hire and train new staff. Having high employee turnover eventually leads to elevated expenses and a direct loss of revenue. Replacing staff takes time and effects your businesses overall profitability. Understanding that virtual team members have different working hours, time zones, and personal commitments helps you to run your business more smoothly with less stress. Your flexibility creates a more inclusive and harmonious work environment.
Normalize Offering Regular Feedback Outside of Performance Reviews:
Implement a system for regular feedback outside of annual performance reviews. We coach our business owners to offer continuous feedback. Management research suggests “catching people doing things right” on a regular basis. Offering both positive and negative feedback in real time helps people understand what is expected of them. Consistent team building creates a rewarding level of trust and communication. An annual performance review is a great opportunity to coach, create goals, and mentor your team members.
As a business owner, building strong business relationships with your virtual team requires dedication, but the rewards are well worth it. A cohesive and motivated virtual team can drive innovation, productivity, and ultimately contribute to the enhanced profitability of your business.
Jeff Smith and Alisa Sattler are the dynamic coaching duo of Raising My Game Business Coaching. We specialize in supporting founders and entrepreneurs to grow and expand their business, while helping them to build and retain their personal wealth. We do not sell any financial products; we collaborate with you to create your Legacy Wealth Roadmap for increased personal wealth and your Legacy Wealth Financial Dream Team for maximized wealth and business asset management.
There are many ways that we can help you to grow your wealth with less stress, less taxation, and more protection. To learn more about how we can help you to grow and retain more of your wealth, please schedule a complementary call at www.raisingmygame.com
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