On Wednesday, August 12th 2020, the People and Culture team at Strathmore University organized their 15th webinar to discuss how to embrace virtual collaborations. Engaging the virtual staffers through the topic were Strathmore University Business School duo. Agnes Ruoro – (Regional Academic Director of New Managers Leadership Program) and Eddah Munyi – (Director- Executive Education).
As the pandemic continues many are finding themselves in uncharted territory. Embracing technology to help work continue is one of the new normal. However, the home office is very different from the traditional office, and with that comes a non-traditional set of work-related problems. Below are some of the challenges of working from home and how to overcome them.
- Domestic distractions. It is a juggle of a different sort. Rather than office politics, you have home needs competing for your attention. For example, children feel free to drop in because you work at home. To solve this, engage family and agree on certain timeliness that will assist chart the way forward.
- Lack of human interaction. Technology grants us the great ability to connect but it denies us the essential social contact we need as humans. To reduce loneliness, ensure you plan for social time, for example exercise with the family. Whatever you chose to do, be deliberate about it.
- Battle of priorities. Separating work from home is a challenge. It is very easy to find yourself engaged only to realize it is midnight and your family has all gone to bed.
To avoid such events, create some defined working guidelines and adhere to them.
With the above aids we also need to figure out how we can become efficient and effective team players while working remotely. Some of the ways we can become better together are:
- Building trust. Improving our relationship with our team members by creating trust among members. For example, being dependable and approachable.
- Resolving conflict. Speak up when there are problems that need to be addressed to get the problems fixed. Do not let unsolved conflict linger for long. Seek mediation and negotiation where needed.
- Driving commitment to a team goal. Be punctual and consistent in meetings. It motivates others to do the same.
- Take ownership of your tasks and build priorities that work to lift the team. Be your own supervisor.
- Attention to results and performance. As a leader seek to offer ongoing feedback. This helps the members stay on course and understand when they are being unproductive.
Working effectively as part of a team is incredibly important for output, quality, and morale. It is difficult to progress without good teamwork in the workplace. We can collaborate better by having a common purpose and goal, trusting each other, clarifying our roles from the start and by communicating openly. Lastly it is important to appreciate the diversity and work together for the greater good.
This article was written by Annete Karanja.
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