While many remote employees extol the advantages of not having to commute, having more flexibility for family and personal time, and the ability to do laundry during the day, it’s significantly more difficult to form meaningful relationships with coworkers when you don’t share the same physical location.
From coffee breaks to happy hours, leaders across industries are experimenting with digital alternatives to stimulate culture-building and HR transformation. Some virtual opportunities to enhance team camaraderie include:
Collaborative Projects Involving Multiple Teams
Cross-team projects jolt people out of their routines and push them out of their comfort zones. Collaborators must learn each other’s working and communication styles when collaborating with a new group. New ideas are frequently generated when people with various backgrounds or expertise brainstorm together.
Successful cross-team collaborations require well-communicated group goals and milestones to keep everyone on schedule and budget. Because remote work might encourage social loafing, each team member must have individual and collective goals.
Remote lunch-and-learns are an excellent approach to brushing up on information and abilities while demonstrating a person’s expertise.
A different team member provides a presentation for each regularly scheduled lunch-and-learn to educate their colleagues on a new skill, share deeper knowledge of the company’s products and services, go deep into a difficulty they experienced and how they addressed it, or introduce a new concept or way of working.
Lunch-and-learns are a great opportunity to give the floor to a colleague who isn’t typically leading meetings and can provide greater insights through their unique perspective.
Creating Opportunities For Informal Interactions
Colleagues can create trust and bond as a team through informal interactions: When employees meet in person, they frequently share ideas and problem solve naturally and spontaneously. It may seem contradictory, but scheduling unstructured time into meeting agendas is critical in a virtual work environment.
One option to share ideas is to set aside the last 10 minutes of a meeting for attendees to chat about whatever is on their minds in whole-group or break-out sessions. Setting up office hours or an open-door policy where leaders invite their reports to make video chats the norm can also help teams collaborate rather than operate in isolation.
Evenings of Virtual Gaming
Firms like Kahoot, JackBox, and Heads Up! increased their virtual game services during the pandemic. While an after-work Zoom trivia game with pals can be refreshing, forced after-work socializing is not: many employees feel compelled to participate.
If a virtual game night is planned at work, it should be voluntary, so that team members don’t feel obligated to participate if they need a break from their screens.
Brain breaks and trivia questions can be incorporated into meetings as alternatives. Building relationships with coworkers should occur on the clock; in some cases, the greatest way to do it is to give employees their time back to recharge for the next day.
Virtual Coffee Breaks
Virtual coffee breaks are fun to break up a long meeting or a virtual conference by recharging your batteries. During these pauses, people can also engage in less work-related talks or brainstorming sessions.
While hot beverages are optional, a third of firms surveyed by GitLab have incorporated these 15- to 30-minute casual talks to promote community during hybrid or remote work.
Participants may engage in a one-on-one getting-to-know-you chat using video conferencing software. They may be themed around organized activities such as trivia, a chair workout, or a meditation session.
Virtual coffee conversations aim to replace informal break room chatter and allow coworkers to get to know one another in a more relaxed situation. They can also boost energy and allow employees to decompress between meetings, much like they would if they ran into coworkers at the workplace. If you think this is a brilliant idea, you can also ask a human resources consultancy for more ideas like this one.
Transparency In Leadership
People can better understand the influence of their job on the organization and even the general public if they understand how all the moving parts fit together. Regular reports from each department and any new company-wide developments can significantly boost leadership transparency and help establish trust.
Regenerative workplaces and HR transformation aim to give back more to their employees than they take. Consider including tailored benefits that capitalize on the community and competitive compensation. Employees who aren’t planning to stay for a long time can have a major impact if they feel connected to the company throughout their time there.
POPS Enabled is a consultancy firm specializing in human resources. We have the knowledge and experience to assist your firm in identifying and implementing the best technology for your needs. We create effective processes so you can focus on what matters most to your company: your staff and customers. Contact us for an HR transformation!