Remote working has been on the rise and has pretty much become the new normal, with the pandemic still at large.
It also poses a challenge for employee engagement. The engaged employee is happier and more productive. Remote working provides a unique opportunity for organizations to innovate and develop new ways for employees to stay connected and maintain the workplace culture, albeit virtually.
Being fully remote from Day One, we realized the need for connection early, and we have a few routine activities that help us establish that connection with each other.
We do a fun interview with every new individual who joins our team; the recorded interview is then shared on our Slack. We also maintain an archive of these videos so the new joiners can watch them and learn about their teammates.
We use Kaapi, a Slack app for engagement, for two purposes: fun and work. For the fun part, it lets you conduct polls or ask random questions and use those as dipsticks to learn about each other. For the more serious part, we use the app to regularly check in with team members individually about how they feel and if anyone needs help on the work front.
This is our weekly Zoom meeting room where all of us gather for an hour, share any updates on our outlook or potential, and engage in random banter. We do pull each others' legs as founders, and we know that makes our team get more comfortable with us and with each other—to look at us as friends/fellow human beings who they can interact with openly and challenge as appropriate.
We had one of our team members run a 10-week fitness challenge. Happy to report I came in at #3 😃
We have started another fitness challenge now and are seeing enthusiastic participation. A great way to keep your team members engaged and healthy!
We ask for open feedback from each other on Slack channels on videos we make, articles we write, the design we create, etc. This also encourages every team member to think like owners and push themselves to do better. The channels #appreciation #product-discussions #customerconversations are some of the avenues where we request and provide feedback and appreciate a job well done. This, in turn, builds a good rapport amongst the team.
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While this isn’t an exhaustive list, these are what worked for us. In fact, we’ve graduated to playing virtual games and celebrating birthdays during our ‘All Faces’. It has only doubled the fun!
Are there any ‘remote rituals’ that you follow at your company? Let us know in the comments!