Due to the rise of remote work, innovative business communication platforms and shifts in our workplace values and expectations, today’s team leaders have an opportunity to propel their companies into new avenues of business. In order to keep up with trends and to attract and maintain a solid workforce, reimagine the way you conduct business. Likewise, your method of communication must evolve to set up their team for success. Implementing these seven trends in remote team management can provide your workforce with a flourishing environment of growth and productivity.
Trend #1: Outsourcing to Latin America
While outsourcing isn’t always necessary, it has become commonplace in many industries. Nearshore software development, for example, is booming as US businesses scale their output. Companies have long been finding ways to decrease costs and increase productivity. Assigning tasks to outside consultants can streamline your company’s goals and efficiency, preserving resources and saving time to refocus on other efforts.
The IT services market in Latin America is projected for growth through 2025. Outsourced service providers in Latin America, such as Alphabet Inc., Atos SE, and our team at WeDevelop, aim to reduce your company’s overhead and amplify its productivity by providing innovative technology and a large, skilled labor pool. A key benefit that makes LATAM a top nearshore location is the prevalence of English language proficiency and an understanding of the nuances of American culture that you’ll find there. Except regions with prohibitive labor costs, these skills are highest in countries like Argentina, Colombia, and Costa Rica.
Explore more reasons many US businesses nearsource to LATAM at our blog post entitled “Why do US-based companies prefer outsourcing to LATAM?”
Trend #2: Embracing a Collaborative Approach
While a company’s organizational structure provides a solid foundation for internal operations, communication is regarded as one of the top indicators of success. With a shared vision comes shared power and cooperative goals to build trust, cultivate relationships and embrace the exchange of ideas. According to a 2022 study by Elsie Boskamp, 86% of employees in leadership positions blame lack of collaboration as the top reason for workplace failures.
Thanks to technological innovations, even remote workers have the capacity to communicate and engage on a daily basis. Platforms such as Google Workspace, DropBox, and SharePoint allow users to edit and share documents within the company, allowing constant exchange of ideas and clear, consistent feedback. Moreover, an open-door policy, even a virtual one, from team leaders provides a sense of partnership among colleagues and enables dialogue to be honest and validated. Inviting team members to share their ideas and to give feedback on a daily basis can bolster employee engagement. The goal is to convey, to all employees, their value within the organization.
Trend #3: Adapting a Flexible Schedule
Hybrid teams are on the rise. Because more teammates work remotely and live in different time zones, team leaders must adjust scheduling of meetings and deadlines to fit within the schedules of their employees. This means the old 9 to 5 schedule is out. By allowing employees to work on their own time, team leaders nurture an environment of trust and productivity. Team leaders must trust their employees that their time is being used in a way that maximizes productivity and efficiency. Removing commuting time can add to a remote worker’s time to complete non-work-related tasks, giving them more versatility in their work schedule and alleviating possible stress. However, when any shift in expectations occurs, team leaders must explicitly convey the new determiners of success to all team members.
Trend #4: Promoting Self Care and Professional Growth
The onset of COVID and the resulting quarantines left a chunk of the workforce without a job, with reduced hours, or with a new way of performing their job. This type of abrupt change to our lives can have substantial impacts on our confidence, self-worth, and abilities. Team leaders should offer their subordinates time for the self care they need to effectively do their job. By enabling them to proactively manage their mental, emotional, and social health, team leaders are not only showing their workforce their value but also benefiting the overall morale of the company. It’s like the airline saying goes. You put your oxygen mask on first before helping someone put on theirs. Encourage your workforce to practice self care so they can, in turn, give their best effort at work. Share these self care tips.
In addition to an emphasis on self care, professional growth has been increasingly popular over the years, with a fresh focus on empowering others through learning. As career switching heats up, team leaders are required to create new incentives to retain their talent. By offering professional development training, team leaders can save money while providing their workforce with opportunities for growth in their area of choice.
Trend #5: Emphasizing the Importance of Soft Skills
Some would say work ethic cannot be taught. As more team members go remote, team leaders have begun to rely on more than just the technical “hard skills” of their workers. Those can be taught. Most companies provide sufficient onboarding training to new employees. But with an increased emphasis on remote work, soft skills such as time management and emotional intelligence have grown in importance.
A 2019 Global Talent Trends study stated that “92% of talent professionals and hiring managers agree that candidates with strong soft skills are increasingly important. In fact, it could make or break the prospect of hiring the perfect candidate. 89% of the aforementioned talent scouts feel that “bad hires” typically have poor soft skills. Even simple expectations like showing up for meetings on time and submitting documents before a deadline are accomplished by different means. Team leaders should model these soft skills to employees and embed them in the culture of the company while also providing training opportunities to strengthen them.
Trend #6: Optimizing the Use of Technology
Teams are becoming more and more dispersed across different time zones as technology better facilitates remote work. Team leaders should rely on that technology and use it properly to maintain communication. Since the majority of communication will be done virtually, the use of technology and its ability to imbed itself as part of a company’s culture is strategic, practical, and necessary. Communication platforms such as Slack, Google Workspace, and Zoom make it easy for companies to connect with employees, develop concepts, exchange information, and share documents. Maintaining constant communication allows employees to work efficiently while also providing them with an outlet to convey any frustrations, challenges, and roadblocks along the way.
In addition, technology provides opportunities for team members to get together and socialize when physical space isn’t shared. Many employees no longer linger at the water cooler and team leaders can’t just pop into an office for a check-in, but video chats allow for interaction. Even chit chat is a useful type of communication in moderation. Check out these fifteen essential collaboration and communication platforms and software programs that your company can implement.
Trend #7: Revamping the Hiring and Onboarding Process
Hiring the right people is a strategic process. It’s not just about selecting candidates with the right experience. A good hiring process is a mixture of video calls, written samples, personality tests and more. It’s about inviting new hires into a work culture where everyone can thrive. You have to hire people who are a fit not just within the role, but within the company as well.
Onboarding training needs to set the tone early. The new hire needs to understand the expectations, learn the company culture, and grasp the team dynamics at large. For remote workers, training needs to be adapted for virtual delivery while still providing the same level of engagement and information. Include group activities that promote collaboration and teamwork so that your team fires on all cylinders.
Take a Step Back
Living in a transformed and evolved work environment requires team leaders to reassess the way they conduct business and reframe their mindset on how to efficiently set up their company for success. New values must be accepted and trends must be adopted in order to compete in today’s rapidly evolving environment. By providing opportunities for self care, optimizing the use of technology, and embracing the collaborative approach, team leaders can guide their organization and build a thriving workplace.
If you’re interested in learning more about remote teams, nearshore software development, and related topics, get in touch with us.