Getting a good communication strategy in place for a distributed team

The Covid-19 global pandemic has made us reassess a huge number of things both in our personal lives and across society. One thing it has definitely highlighted is how feasible it is for many of us to work from home more often, if not permanently. With the second lockdown and a potentially difficult winter ahead, working from home looks like the immediate future for many people.

Despite commonly held assumptions to the contrary before lockdown, many teams are proving just as motivated and working just as hard as before from home. Yet with face to face contact being largely lost and company structure entirely different than at the start of the year, every business will need to think about their communication strategy and how they keep their teams talking while your team is distributed away from the office.

Here are some pointers on how to keep conversation flowing and communication strong during the pandemic.

Get the right technology in place

You can’t execute a communications plan without the right tools; software, email and online technology is one key way of staying in touch, while phone systems will also have a big role to play. Consider how you will use each piece of technology at your disposal to its fullest.

Use virtual meetings and video chat

There are numerous programmes for these sorts of discussions, including those often integrated with modern phone systems. These can help replace the in-person interaction you get from meeting colleagues every day. It might feel like a pale imitation of seeing each other in person, but it definitely allows for more interaction than a simple phone call or email. Your staff can see facial expressions and gestures, plus it makes brainstorming and discussion on client projects easier.

Messaging tools are surprisingly useful

As with voice chats and video calls, text messages or group chats are an instant, easy way to stay in touch with small updates and minor but important details. Slack is one good messaging app, but there are numerous examples that make one-on-one communication or small group discussions that much easier and more casual.

Consider shared calendars

It can be tricky to track exactly what your team are up to and what they’re working on at this moment in time. Having a shared calendar or task manager allows your business to stay on top of these things and make sure everyone is pulling in the same direction at the same time.

You’ll need flexible voice communication

No team can communicate effectively without phones. Your standard business phone system was not originally designed to tackle issues like having a team working from home, however. A VoIP service can offer features like virtual/local numbers, mobile device integration and even allows your team to take their handsets home and plug them into the internet. The phone will retain its own number and work exactly as it would in the office.

Equations has a number of communications solutions including VoIP phone systems that can help you and your team stay in touch during the pandemic and be flexible enough to meet your ever-changing needs. If you’d like to learn more, give us a call on 01237 420010.

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