With the coronavirus pandemic forcing people to work from home for the foreseeable future, it’s important for a project manager or tech lead to learning how to lead web development projects remotely. Teams are also becoming more diverse and distributed across different countries, which means that you’ll still have to manage your teams remotely, with or without a health crisis. Here are some remote team management best practices that we’ve learned through experience.
- Know your team members’ time zones. Working with people from different countries means you’ll have to accommodate different time zones. It’s hard to keep on adding or subtracting hours from your time, so you may need to use a tool such as Every Time Zone where you could compare times across different geographies. That way, you can schedule meetings at times that are convenient for everyone involved.
- Use collaboration tools. There are a lot of tools you can use to keep in touch with your web development team. You can also use these tools to manage projects, share files, and keep track of conversations. Tools like Slack or Microsoft Teams allow you to organize chatrooms and share files for specific projects, while Azure DevOps or GitHub can serve as your team’s code repository and version control system. If you want people to be able to edit technical documentation on the fly, consider using OneDrive, Google Drive, or Dropbox.
- Build personal connections with team members. People who work on-site tend to take personal connections with their colleagues for granted. However, because working from home reduces the chances of personal interactions, remote workers sadly tend to be less invested in their work. You should never underestimate the importance of building rapport with your team. Make time for small talk during group meetings or one-on-ones, remember their birthdays and local holidays, and discover what makes them tick. This will result in better productivity and collaboration within your team.