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So many people across the world are now working remotely. They may be concerned about the loss of regular facetime with their team.
But the latest psychological literature suggests that constant collaboration can reduce 'collective intelligence.' Less communication might actually be more beneficial to a team's joint problem-solving ability.
In a 2015 study, researchers found that more communication in a group results in the team members quickly converging on a consensus without really exploring alternatives.
In less well-connected groups, team members suffered a bit with information gathering but were less likely to reach a consensus too quickly. Each member built on their own theories, which resulted in a greater diversity of ideas.
Researchers tested how the rhythm of our communication can influence our problem-solving. The participants were divided into three groups.
Research showed that teams working with short "bursts" of communication, followed by longer periods of silence, performed better than less intense conversations extended over a long time.
Short but intense communication helps to maintain momentum and motivation and create feelings of enthusiasm.
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Companies that fail at remote work focus too much on technology and too little on the process. Successful remote work is based on clear processes that support three core principles.
It can be difficult to explain complex ideas. The lack of face-to-face interaction limits social cues, which may lead to misunderstandings and conflict.
Remote workers should be working in harmony, but people often don't know what others are doing and how everything fits together.
Most companies embracing remote work also have dedicated headquarters. But remote-ish teams have even more communication and collaboration challenges than fully remote teams....
The single biggest mistake companies can make is to opt to be remote-friendly instead of remote-first. Companies often accept the idea that remote is the future of work without creating an inclusive culture to ensure it works for everyone.
Hybrid companies function best when the entire company is optimized for remote work. Successful hybrid teams set up processes to help their remote workers thrive alongside their office teammates.
Leadership must acknowledge the various challenges remote workers face and create solutions. Create a remote work policy that keeps remote workers and contractors from feeling like second class team members. Remote workers should feel fully connected and not missing a thing.
It all comes down to trust, which is one of the characteristics teambuilding...