The Canvas Planner team is a remote team! We have been working from different cities for the last 6 years and we have a lot of experience in working remotely.
These days a lot of people experience remote work for maybe the first time and it is not easy. Especially if you don’t have the right setup, the right tools, and the right method.
It can be difficult to keep projects moving in the same direction and to keep a good overview of who is doing what. To stay in sync as a team you probably experience an increase of calls and emails, but some tricks and tools can help you.
We simply believe that working remotely requires a different approach!
The structure is important if you want a successful remote collaboration. Both when it comes to how the team communicates and the way the team structure and share an overview.
We often see teams communicate in a very ineffective way using emails for chatting. When you do that the amount of emails in your inbox explodes and you suddenly spend a lot of time searching for that important email you can’t find.
When you work remotely the communication should be structured and you have to be clear and precise in your communication. That will result in fewer emails and less time spent to get an overview of your team communication.
A successful remote work culture requires a great communication tool.
We recommend a communication solution such as Slack. In Slack, it is possible to create topic-based chats for different teams. In that way, you can easily find the messages linked to a specific topic or person.
When you move your internal communication out of your inbox the number of emails will of course also decrease and it will make the fast and chat-based internal communication easier. It also limits the number of meetings since the entire team can participate in the dialogue.
When you work remotely you lose the shared overview you might have on the office whiteboards. Without it, you probably feel lost.
We know that a shared visual understanding can solve many of the challenges that may occur with remote teams and the technology can help you.
Sharing a visual overview of a project and the assigned tasks make it much easier to work together as a remote team. Canvas Planner is online tool that comines the visual whiteboards with task management in a very intuitive way.
This is an example of what a shared visual overview could look like in Canvas Planner:
We recommend that you save your documents in the cloud if possible so everyone can work on the same document at the same time. It also saves a lot of time because you don’t have to search for files that are attached to emails. We use Google Drive, and it has made our document collaboration smooth and easy since we can link the files to the visual overview.
It can often be very useful to share a screen with your team members. In this way, you are on-the-same-page and it is easier to follow the discussion if it is based on a PowerPoint, document or canvas in Canvas Planner. For screen sharing and online meetings we prefer Zoom.
We hope that the current situation will change our habits and work culture so more people get the change to work remotely after the lockdown. That more companies find out that remote work can be very beneficial for productivity if the setup is right. We believe that a modern work culture includes flexibility and remote work. 🙂
If you have anyquestions, feel free to write to us.
In this blog post, we have not covered the human aspect. Remote work does require self-discipline, but that is a separate element.
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