In these complicated times, as the world grapples with the coronavirus outbreak, staying connected is crucial in the quest to maintain access to information. The role of the communications and media industry is more vital than ever before and it’s our responsibility to ensure our customers can continue do business in an unusual time, while allowing them to provide services to their users who rely on them – without disruption.
For us at Amdocs, the challenge is double. We need to balance the protection of employee health with maintaining business stability and providing continuity for our customers and their ~2 billion subscribers.
Most of our workforce is now working from home, with only those in business-critical roles coming into the office. Yet coordinating a home-based team is very much uncharted territory for many of our managers, who are used to regular face-to-face interactions between their team members in the office. This change has therefore demanded managers and employees alike to adopt of new ways of working.
To ensure we maximize the potential of this opportunity, we leveraged the expert advice of Jonie Greenwood, who has successfully managed a 100% remote team for several years. The following are her key tips for effectively managing remote teams:
- Establish frequent, recurring team meetings; virtual huddles
- Utilize instant messaging and other online collaboration tools (Messenger, Skype for Business, WebEx, blogs, WhatsApp, video technology) to spark spontaneous interactions among team members
- Pay attention to time zones
- Set expectations
- Understand your role as the contractor and those you serve which are your customers
- Set clear, deliberate expectations and establish clear lines of accountability
- Set priorities to ensure deliverables are met
- Positive team dynamic
- Watch the language you use when talking to remote workers and make sure you’re not creating fractures within your team
- Concentrate on commonalties across the team – organizational goals and objectives
- Motivate employees by ensuring their work is recognized
- Be generous with public praise and acknowledge remote employees
- Trust and familiarity
- Get to know your team on a personal level
- Build essential empathy, trust and camaraderie
- Learn to trust employees and not micromanage
- Lead by example and do as you say
- What binds virtual teams together are the personal details
- Understand connectivity guidelines
- How to connect (company laptop vs a personal computer)
- Verify identity with multi-factor authentication (MFA)
- Protect company assets
- Have a dedicated workspace in your home, where there are no distractions
Remember – effectively managing remote teams all comes down to COMMUNICATION! Keep the doors of communication open, no matter where you are located.
In addition to the above, Amdocs has established a rich network of support information and services for our employees and their families:
- Working remotely FAQ, a document that includes all information about remote connectivity, virtual meetings and collaboration tools
- The Virtually Together website, which contains great insights on handling the day-to-day during the current crisis, with updates provided regularly.
- The Coronavirus Advisory, which is updated daily with the latest developments.
With the right resources and fast adaption to new ways of working, Amdocs and our employees will come through this challenging period stronger – and with great accomplishments. We believe you can too.