Whether you’re working from home, another country or even another office in the same building, effective communication is essential. That’s why we’ve compiled these tips for communicating effectively while working remotely.
Give feedback in person rather than over email.
You shouldn’t assume that your coworker will be able to read between the lines and understand your point of view. In fact, you should avoid writing emails that leave too much room for interpretation at all. Instead, give feedback in person whenever possible. This will help ensure that your feedback is received by the recipient in exactly the way you intend it to be.
Ask questions to make sure you understand your co-worker’s perspective, as well as to help them understand yours.
Asking questions is an excellent way to improve communication with your remote work colleagues. You can ask questions to make sure you understand their perspective, as well as to help them understand yours. In particular, asking open-ended questions that encourage more than a yes/no response can be helpful in understanding the other person’s viewpoint.
Asking questions shows interest in what your co-worker has to say and encourages open dialogue between you two.
Be helpful and generous in your praise.
Being helpful and generous in your praise is another important part of being an effective communicator. To make sure you’re doing this well, here are some tips:
- Be specific. You want to make sure that your feedback is clear and actionable. If you tell someone “this looks great!” but don’t give them any reason why it’s great or provide suggestions for how they can improve, then what are they supposed to do with that? Give specifics on what you liked about their work so that they can learn from their successes and improve upon their failures going forward.
- Use positive words. It’s easy for us humans to take criticism personally-and nobody wants to feel like someone is always criticizing them! So instead of saying something like “this isn’t good enough yet; let me know when it’s ready,” try saying something more supportive: “You did a fantastic job with this draft.” The difference between those two statements might seem small at first glance, but the second one is much more encouraging than the first one because it gives the other person permission not only (1) not worry about whether their work will be perfect right away, but also (2) feel proud of what they’ve accomplished so far!
Be open to taking criticism yourself.
When it comes to feedback, the most important thing is that you remain open to feedback. Think of it as an opportunity to learn and improve your communication skills (and sometimes even life).
If you are giving feedback, make sure that you are being clear and concise with your points. It’s also helpful if you can give a couple examples of when the other person did this thing correctly so they know what “right” looks like. If possible, try not to come off as judgmental or aggressive in any way-the goal should be for both parties involved to learn from the conversation.
On the receiving end of things, be willing to listen carefully without taking anything personally. When someone has criticized something about your work or personality traits in an attempt at being constructive, take some time before responding so that you can think through their criticism objectively without any emotions getting in the way.
Make sure that your colleagues have time to prepare for a conversation with you, if possible.
In the event that you will be working remotely with a colleague, it is important to keep in mind that they may not always be available at the same time as you. This can lead to scheduling issues if your work style is different than theirs.
If possible, make sure that your colleagues have time to prepare for a conversation with you and make sure not to schedule meetings without warning them first. Not only will this help ensure that your meeting goes smoothly, but it can also save everyone’s time by avoiding last-minute shuffling around of schedules or missed meetings!
Set clear expectations for the project so you don’t have to go back and forth about what’s required and what everyone is doing.
- Use a project management tool like Trello or Asana. These apps are great for setting up checklists, milestones, and due dates. They’ll help you stay on track throughout the course of your work.
- Make sure everyone is on the same page. If you’re working remotely with other people, it’s important to use tools like Slack (a chat tool) and Todoist (a task manager) so that everyone knows exactly what they’re supposed to be doing at all times.
- Don’t waste time going back-and-forth about what needs to be done! There are many different ways you can set expectations for your team members-from emails to phone calls-but it’s important that they know exactly what they should expect from each other before starting a project together
Don’t waste people’s time by scheduling a meeting for something that could be handled in an email or text message.
Meetings are a necessary evil. They can provide an opportunity to get everyone on the same page, but they can also be time sinks and a waste of money if they’re not done right.
For example, if you notice something in a document that needs clarification or correction, send an email with your question or request for clarification instead of scheduling an impromptu meeting. If you have questions about something related to your work that requires research and analysis from multiple people, consider sending an email requesting their responses rather than holding a meeting.
Speak up instead of avoiding difficult discussions.
Difficult conversations are inevitable. The longer you wait to have a difficult conversation, the harder it will be, and the more likely it is that other people will have to deal with the situation when you’re not around.
If you’re afraid of having hard conversations in person because of your shyness or introversion, try being more assertive through voice calls or video calls. This way, there’s no physical distance between you and your coworker (which can make some people feel uncomfortable). If you have an opportunity for face-to-face time with someone who’s affected by this decision, take advantage of it!
Effective communication means constructive and respectful feedback, no matter how your team works together
If you’re like most people, you’ve probably heard the phrase “feedback is a gift” at some point. But what does that actually mean? Giving and receiving feedback is one of the most important skills in any working relationship. Asking for, giving and receiving constructive criticism is a key part of creating an open environment where it’s safe to take risks and share ideas. Here are some tips for how to give feedback that will be both helpful and appreciated:
- Be honest but not harsh or mean-spirited: Honesty is a two-way street-if you want your employees to be honest with you about their work, then it’s up to you not to take their comments personally. This can be especially hard when someone has been working remotely from another country, but don’t let cultural differences get in the way of being able to communicate effectively!
- Be specific: When giving critical suggestions or criticisms about something someone has done (or hasn’t done), focus on explaining exactly what needs improvement instead of making general statements about how much better things were before this person joined the team.”
Communication is important when working remotely, but it can be challenging. The best way to avoid frustration and keep your team on track is to practice clear, respectful and constructive feedback. Set clear expectations for the project so you don’t have to go back and forth about what’s required and what everyone is doing.
Don’t waste people’s time by scheduling a meeting for something that could be handled in an email or text message. And if there are any problems with your work or communication style, speak up instead of avoiding difficult discussions!