How To Set Goals For Your Remote TeamPublié le 27 May 2021
As remote work is poised to become permanent for a number of different businesses, it is more important than ever to learn how to set goals for your remote team.
Remote work is now the normal way to work. Almost 88% of organizations are letting their employees work from home amidst the pandemic. Interestingly, the work flexibility has increased 51% of remote workers’ productivity.
Undoubtedly, remote work has gifted businesses with more productive employees. But there’s also a negative flipside to it:
- Limited employee connect
- Decreased work-life balance
- Delays and latency
- Increased distractions
If your organization is currently struggling to manage operations or align your employees, it’s time to learn how to set goals for your remote team. By setting up goals, managers can communicate with their people effectively and help them understand the organization’s vision. With clear goals, you and your team can streamline operations more effectively and quickly achieve your targets.
As per a study by Stitch and Shutter, 14% of businesses that set goals are ten times more successful than those without goals.
Knowing how to set goals for your remote team that are concrete and realistic offers various benefits, including:
- Team motivation
- Better prioritization
- Improved decision making
- Elevated company-employee alignment
- Better performance
- Targeted performance management
One of the best ways to help your remote teams stay motivated and feel empowered is to provide them with clear expectations and courses of action. Juggling between work and personal responsibilities is not easy. On top of that, if your team does not have clarity on what is to be done and how it’ll only lead to added stress. Setting short-term and realistic goals for your teams will not only help them manage their time better but also motivate them to keep ongoing, thereby improving their productivity.
Clear goals can help in prioritizing the work. Once your employees know what goals they have to achieve first, they can plan accordingly. For example, if your company’s goal is to generate new leads, your team can prioritize sales-related operations. Additionally, clear goals help remote workers to better prepare themselves for any contingencies that may lay in the future.
Improved Decision Making
During a remote work environment, the ability of your team to make self-evaluated decisions is very crucial. With well-defined goals, you can improve the decision-making skills of employees. Before making any decision, employees can refer to the goals at hand as a benchmark and take the most beneficial decisions. Employees can then learn to make decisions based on either the positive or negative outcome.
Elevated Company-Employee Alignment
It’s crucial for your employees to realize how their work is linked to their company’s overall vision. When goals are clearly shared across team members, every employee feels connected and invested in the business. This leads to better teamwork, alignment, and employee engagement.
If teams and individuals have a clear view of their goals and how they align with the company’s goals, they’ll stay more focused on the work that matters most to the business.
As per Harvard Business Review, organizations with highly-aligned employees are over twice as likely to be top performers.
When your team members are aware of each other’s priorities, actions, and plans, they are more in sync and better able to work together to make sure the required work gets done in time. Knowing how to set goals for your remote team will allow for employees in multiple locations to work together as one cohesive unit, thrive on each other’s strengths, and achieve larger goals.
Targeted Performance Management
Goals work as performance measurement metrics for the organization. The method of setting actionable goals for remote teams fosters focused and targeted performance management. By laying down definite targets, managers give their teams a direction to follow and a valid basis for performance evaluation.
They can measure the quantitative and qualitative performance of their workers and managers can also identify where their employees require more support and extra resources. Measurable goals help both employees and organizations to evaluate the outcome of their efforts, and make any necessary changes and improvements.
How To Set Goals For Your Remote Team
It is projected that 99% of people would prefer to work remotely either full-time or at least part-time for the rest of their career. That means that remote work is the way to go in the future and if you want to grow your business, you need to design your goals keeping this in mind. Let’s look at a few ways on how to go about setting goals for your remote teams:
Adopt The S.M.A.R.T Approach
One of the wisest and time-tested ways to set goals for your remote team is to utilize the S.M.A.R.T approach. It’s a traditional goal-making strategy that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. With this method, you can set relevant and result-driven goals for your remote team. Have a closer look into each aspect of S.M.A.R.T goals:
Specific: Goals need to be focused and meaningful. Therefore, decide what results you want to achieve and accordingly set the specific goals. For example, if your business goal is to prioritize retaining your old clients rather than acquiring new ones, specify this to your employees so they can plan accordingly.
Measurable: Through measurable goals, you can easily track the performance of your remote team. While it is important to set goals that push your team, don’t set unrealistic goals because that will only demotivate your employees in the end.
Achievable: Remote work doesn’t mean your employees can work around the clock. Always remember, remote employees are still your regular employees working from their homes, many with added responsibilities and obligations, so set goals within the realm of possibility for them.
Relevant: Don’t set goals just because you have to. Set goals that are relevant to your organization and can help you to grow your business. Irrelevant goals are just as ineffectual and unhelpful as having no goals. For instance, to make your employees proficient sales reps, provide them with practical opportunities to improve their skills, instead of only studying prepared sales info and reports.
Time-bound: Goals should be bound to a specific timeline. Without a timeline that includes checkpoints and deadlines, your employees won’t have the drive to achieve your goals. Deadlines fuel your team to extend their boundaries and provide a way to measure their own progress. Again, remember to only set realistic timelines that do not create unnecessary pressure or cause employees to become overworked and burnt out.
Define Clear Expectations
One of the main reasons you are considering how to set goals for your remote team is to fully inform them of your expectations. Clear expectations will help your team to know what exactly needs to be done, how to prioritize their efforts, and plan their work schedule based on what needs to be done. It will save employees from wasting their time on figuring out what tasks and responsibilities they are expected to complete.
Poor communication is the primary reason behind doomed remote teams. Since there is zero in-person physical communication in the remote work environment, you should use all available digital communication tools to share your goals with your remote team. We are flooded with a number of virtual communication tools today, we have Skype, Zoom, Slack, and Blue Jeans, just to name a few.
Once you have shared your goals with your employees, it doesn’t mean your job is done. Goal setting is an ongoing approach. You need to constantly communicate your goals to remote employees using the digital communication tools at your disposal and ensure that they are fully understood.
Focus On Personal Development
If you want your employees to stay productive, you should give them an opportunity for personal growth and professional development. Aligning the company’s goals with the personal development of your employees will appeal to both employers and workers. Help your employees see that developing professionally and gaining new skills will add value to organizational growth.
For example, if right now the workload has decreased, you should encourage your employees to spend this time upscaling their skill sets through learning the workplace. You can leverage this opportunity to improve your employees’ skills, leading to a workforce that is more satisfied and performs at an even higher level.
Review And Modify Your Goals
Goal setting is a continuous process. You can’t sit ideally after setting your goals for your remote team. You have to frequently review your goals and adjust them according to your precise requirements, employee feedback, and the fluctuating needs of your customers. If your goals aren’t taking you where you want to go, it’s time you change or alter them.
By knowing how to set goals for your remote team, you can give them clear direction and effectively channel their efforts. You can show them what your expectations are so they can plan their schedule and prioritize work accordingly. When each team member has a clear understanding of company goals and the important role they play in accomplishing them, they will be able to work independently and effectively to achieve them.
With clear goals, you can eliminate the virtual barriers and empower your remote team to enhance their productivity. Goals are for everyone — remote managers, employees, leaders, and business associates. So, don’t wait and set your remote team goals now.