This article by our Founder and CEO, Chris Pollinger as published by Inman News shares insights on successfully managing a virtual team.
Managing a virtual team is an art form. We are now in a new world where working virtually has become the norm for our society. With that, we have had to re-write our entire playbook as a workforce. As we have collectively adjusted, there are some best practices which have emerged. Here are four tips successfully managing a virtual team.
Start Work Early
Everyone has their natural rhythm. Whatever it was before the “work from home” status, consider waking up 30-60 minutes earlier. The early mornings are generally quieter. They are also a great time to focus your mindset.
Spend some time learning, growing and keeping up with the relevant news which directly affects you, your team and your client base. Distill the complex information into the simple. Integrate it into your messaging and communications for the day.
Spend some time reviewing your business goals, key performance indicators and business dashboards. If you want some examples of business dashboards which make the complex simple, shoot us a message and I can share them with you.
Mornings Are Best for Working IN Your Business
When successfully managing a virtual team, it is essential you step up your communication. Whatever you were doing before, double it. Weekly team meetings should go to twice a week in a virtual environment. Listing clients can go to daily updates. Your daily admin check-in meetings should go to twice a day. All your meetings should inherently be shorter, more focused and more efficient than ones done in person.
In a virtually based workplace, people still need to connect. Video conferencing and a solid set of noise cancelling headphones have become as critical as a lockbox key. I have personally spent dozens of hours trying to find the right equipment that doesn’t sound like you are in a tin box, underwater or picks up the neighbors barking dog. Find the combination that works for you, both on your computer and your phone.
Block off time to spend a couple of hours each day on the phone. Call your clients that are in your database. Reach out and touch base with those past clients you haven’t talked to for way too long. Don’t feel the need to make the calls about business. Check in on how people are doing and be human. We are in a people business and they should always be a priority over a potential commission. These calls are about them, not you.
Afternoons Are Best for Working ON Your Business
When successfully managing a virtual team, it is a great time to evaluate all of your marketing and advertising. Take a look at the Return on Investment each spend is giving you and the team. Cut the ones that aren’t performing. Double down on the relationships you have who offer business to business referrals. Strategically reach out and build relationships with other business owners and leaders within your community.
Conversion rates from social media spends have gone up dramatically. Now is a great time to learn how to do targeted social advertising. Think about how you can incorporate more video and content beyond Just Listed and Just Sold announcements. Both have great return, engagement and conversion. Look for was you can be a content resource for your market. What are the trends? Where are things heading? Who are the right contacts in your area for all these unfolding stimulus opportunities? Why do you do what you do? What makes you different?
Start obsessing about your client’s non-transactional real estate needs. Work with each person on your team to find creative ways to fill them. An idea for the foreseeable future is to deliver branded care packages to those in self-isolation. That is just one idea. Brainstorm with your team and I bet you can come up with dozens more which can be implemented this week.
Evenings Are The Best For Socializing
Take the time to socialize with friends, family, clients, prospects and those on your team.
In times of isolation, people crave a sense of connection. Use the evenings to do virtual happy hours, host a watch party for a out of work musician who is happy to work for tips or start a virtual book club. Think creatively and get people together to share, talk and build connections in ways they never thought about before.
Successfully managing a virtual team is re-writing how we manage and lead. The work world has changed. And with some minor caveats, it looks as if we won’t see a return to pre-pandemic work conditions.