4 Fresh Engagement Activities for Remote Teams

A worker smiling while having a video meeting with his colleagues

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Summarizing data from the last few years, Gallup reports that employee engagement yields higher productivity and can lead to a 23% increase in company profits. But how can businesses ensure engagement among their remote or hybrid workers? 

Regularly introducing engagement activities for remote teams ensures that your workers are focused, productive, and satisfied with their current jobs. A recent Buffer survey on the state of remote work revealed that 51% of respondents said career growth is harder since they are not seen in person and, in turn, not considered for new opportunities.

This presents an opportunity to find new ways to engage your remote and hybrid workforce, not only for the benefit of culture and morale but also for professional development. 

Not sure where to start? Here are four remote team engagement ideas that can unite your staff members even when working separately.

1. Virtual Learning Pods

Remote and hybrid teams might already connect through Zoom meetings or conference calls. However, HR staff can create “virtual learning pods” to facilitate employee interactions that encourage continuous learning, knowledge sharing, and mentorship.

For instance, messaging apps such as Slack or Zoho have options to create “channels” for curated discussions. In this case, managers or team leads can boost engagement by facilitating collaborative learning exercises that encourage team members to ask questions and get a deeper understanding of a particular project, function, or department.

Here, the goal is to provide a space for remote employees to develop in their roles and work with their colleagues toward a shared mission. Even in-person environments can experience the struggle of information being siloed and knowledge hoarding. Virtual learning pods help employees and teams to better understand the work being done throughout the organization and create opportunities for new skills to be gained.

2. Gratitude Wall

Team messaging apps and social media sites may be good places to create a “gratitude wall.” It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate; simply encourage your team members to write down things they’re thankful for throughout their day/week. 

Over time, the gratitude wall will become a space that overflows with positivity. Gratitude might not be as easily measured as revenue or cash flow, but it can be every bit as important when times get challenging. Teaching employees to exercise their “gratitude muscle” can help them stay resilient, seeking the best in every situation.

This space doesn’t have to be limited to employees. HR directors might also encourage company managers to share things they’re thankful for. A study from the Wharton School of Business showed that when employers openly express gratitude, the productivity of their teams measurably increases. 

3. Virtual Coaching

Professional development opportunities rank among the top reasons why employees stay loyal to their employers. Essentially, workers feel more valued when their employers invest in their careers through continuing education or specialized training. 

You can offer your remote teams these same opportunities. Alerting your team to webinars or even local events can show your commitment to your team’s career development. Some employers might consider giving access to online educational platforms (e.g., LinkedIn Learning) for industry-specific insights.

Of course, if you want the most direct approach, you could consider virtual employee coaching. One-on-one virtual coaching programs offer personalized support so you can truly bring out the best in each of your employees, even when working remotely. Sayge offers a customized approach and resources to help you grow your remote teams.

4. One-on-One Time With Senior Management

While this isn’t a group activity, remote workers may feel more engaged when they have the opportunity to speak directly with senior leadership or even the company founder. This takes some coordination, of course, but remote workers will likely appreciate the chance to interact with company managers.

This isn’t just a casual conversation. Leaders should be willing to actively listen to their workers, learning more about each team member’s values and concerns. While you can’t address every problem in your workplace, fostering connections between managers and employees can lead to a culture where workers feel heard, valued, and understood.

The Future of Remote Work

According to the latest data from Pew Research Center, a third of all employees who can work from home do so on a full-time basis. That’s all the more reason to find creative engagement activities for remote teams. 

Get creative! The above ideas are not an exclusive list. Don’t be afraid to test out ideas, or mix and match these suggestions to find the combination that works best for your team members. Because in the end, if you keep them engaged, they’ll keep your organization moving forward.

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