Real, nurturing relationships among your fellow creatives is something that you build up over a period of time. It essentially determines how you interact when working together towards achieving the collectives or client’s goals. Here are 5 ways to keep your freelance collective happy!
Nevertheless, collective culture is quite difficult to plainly define, it is much easier to feel and experience. The widely accepted definition of workplace culture or “the way a company’s team works together as one unit” comes pretty close. Building this kind of relationship can be quite challenging, but it is especially harder to maintain when the most of you are sitting in different locations, offices, cafés or cities.
To help you and your fellow creatives maintain the important sense of unity when working together – here are 5 tips to maintain your collective culture from different locations.
1. Clear and open communication
The way you and your team communicate, especially when not sitting a desk over, can either strengthen your culture or damage it. A couple of things you need to take into consideration are the communication channels you use to keep in touch, how your team communicates their availability and how you determine who should be kept in the loop for discussions. For instance, using communication channels like Skype, Zoom, Microsoft team or Slack are a lot more effective than the traditional e-mail chains or the (half?!) digital way of traditional mail– the web po box.
In the same light, make sure that all members of your team are included in some team discussions. With this in place, it can go a long way to build a stronger team and culture when everyone feels included and that they are important.
2. Sharing of knowledge
When everyone of your team is working on-site, sharing knowledge is obviously a lot easier. Team members that have extensive knowledge of important subjects that can benefit the whole team can simply say it out at the office. On the flip side, doing this remotely can be a bit more difficult. One way to encourage knowledge sharing is by getting employees with specialist knowledge to create PDF files or have webinars on set times where the whole team get together. Through these means, they can effectively teach their fellow creatives.
Even more, they are more likely to appreciate each other’s values and work together more cohesively.
3. Create team time
Remote working doesn’t account for those impromptu moments at the office where your team members simply relax and catch up, like the classic lunchroom. The thing is, these moments are extremely important, because they tend to improve team relationships. It goes a long way to make everyone work like a well-oiled machine.
As mentioned earlier, remote work doesn’t make really provide for this level of bonding. But, there’s a way around it!
Simply set apart some time each week or month for team time. This should be a designated time for your team members to simply hang out with each other without work pressure and just having fun. It’ll further encourage transparency within the team, and help to maintain the collective culture.
4. Encourage inclusivity
Although, as you might have team members sharing office space with you, some might be working from home or at a café. It’s important that they feel that they are working together as a team, even if they don’t see your face each day. One of the most simple, yet effective, way you can encourage inclusivity is by including team-like language such as “our” and “we” when speaking to team members. Easy and effective!
5. Show appreciation for your team
Remote work can pose as a complex situation for many, but try not to be blind to the opportunities it presents. For one, it encourages flexibility which most workers definitely will appreciate and it can also help you attract new members of the team. In fact, this kind of flexibility strengthens a workforce. Regularly let your team know that you trust them, appreciate their efforts, and value their positions.
At the end of the day, this will help build an even stronger collective culture and you will have the team of your dreams. Thank you for your time reading my 5 ways to keep your freelance collective happy!