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What To Do When Remote Projects Go Awry - Ambition & Balance

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https://doist.com/blog/remote-projects/

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What To Do When Remote Projects Go Awry - Ambition & Balance
Remote projects can include communication challenges, collaboration issues, and accountability blunders. Here’s how to course correct when things go wrong.

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A Central Management Tool

A Central Management Tool

Physical presence does play a large part in moving our projects forward. Managing a project remotely requires a diligent and transparent approach to keep track and maintain the various tasks, deadl...

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Keep teammates accountable

Creating accountability is a great way to manage the work remotely. Accountability is shifted to the teammates, who are now supposed to be responsible for their own work and decisi...

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Document Everything

Even if the team is small, document, formalize and map each process, making it scalable and automatic.

Standard Operating Procedures, if used correctly in a remote setting,...

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Open Channels

Open channels of communication are imperative in managing remote work. Effective communication is the single most important part of handling a remote setting, and is also the most challengi...

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Asynchronous Communication

Asynchronous communication happens when you are not forced to respond to each and every ‘ping’ in real time. Its benefits:

  • Communication becomes less ‘urgent’. It ma...

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Best Practices for Communicating Asynchronously

  1. Allow Offline work, so that team members do some real work.
  2. Use the right communication tool.
  3. Minimize status meetings, as they are mostly a waste of time.
  4. Make...

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Overcommunicate and Trust

Trusting your remote coworkers is the only way for it to succeed. Trust the employees and use empathy. Do not assume the worst.

To avoid any communication breakdown, always...

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The "No Response" Situation

If there is no response to a request, it is crucial to figure out if everything is ok, after a stipulated amount of time( according to the urgency of the task). Many people can feel isolated an...

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Conflicting Priorities

Multiple complex projects require juggling of conflicting priorities, making it a challenge to meet deadlines, and separating urgent work from important work.

The way to look at priorit...

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Asynchronous communication

There are mainly two ways to communicate within a company: synchronous and asynchronous communication. While the second type has always been widely practiced, as face-to-face meetings or any other ...

Real-time communication drawbacks

While real-time communication inside of a team might lead to solving faster some issues, it also has various disadvantages. 

For instance, having your colleagues come to ask you questions to which you feel pressured to answer on the spot leads to you being continuously interrupted, which results in being less productive and feeling stressed or even getting a burnout, as you try to do everything in proper time.

The asynchronous workplace

When the employees are provided with control as to when they are willing to communicate with their co-workers, there are many advantages that emerge. 

For instance, having the freedom to decide exactly how your working day should look like leads to more satisfied employees as well as to better communication within the team. Further benefits vary from feeling less stressed due to better planning to greater transparency and more efficient work.

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Assembling the Team

... that's capable of executing in a remote setup:

  • Hire doers: they will get stuff done even if they are working from a secluded island.
  • Hire people you can trust....

Software/Tools

In a remote team, you'll need the right tools to make sure everyone stays on the same page and can continue to execute without a physical person standing next to them.

You likely will need a tool in certain categories like group chat and video conferencing to make remote successful.

Processes

Good processes let you get work done in the absence of all else. They provide structure and direction for getting things done.

A few examples from Zapier:

  • Weekly Hangouts;
  • Weekly One-on-Ones;
  • Bring the team together 2 times/year somewhere cool;
  • Automate anything that can be automated.

Faster Isn’t Better

Faster Isn’t Better

Back-to-back video calls, all-day team chats combined with an expectation of immediate response is taking its toll on people trying to work from home.

In the quest to create a real-time ...

Asynchronous Vs Synchronous Communication

  • Asynchronous communication is when we send a message (such as emails) without expecting an immediate response. The recipient can take hours to answer it.

  • Synchronous (or real-time) communication is when you and the other person are engaged in a face-to-face audio or video conversation, like a video call or a phone call. The information discussed is responded immediately.

Instant messaging tools like Slack or Teams are synchronous, and in some companies, email is also used as a real-time communication tool.

Communication Boom

Team communication has increased by 50 percent in the last 20 years. We spend an average of three hours a day working on emails. On an average, Slack users send about 200 messages in a day.

This near constant communication hampers work productivity, with video calls, one-on-one meetings, e-mail and team chat leaving little room for actual work.

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