How do you communicate effectively with your team members online? Wendy Smiles, a Change Management Consultant from Bene Praxis shares her thoughts and tools with us about online team communication and work delegation.
A business leader’s role is to provide as much certainty as we can. When leading projects, the first two things I think about are communication and clarity. Trust from team members disappear when they don’t know what’s happening and they don’t have clarity about what they do. This is why clarity and communication are incredibly powerful.
Everybody has a role in being a leader – whether you’re a business owner or the person who’s at the front line. We all have an opportunity to take up on a leadership role. The question is, how do you distribute the role of leadership across your team that’s going to help you, as a business owner but also allows someone to take up some role of certainty? Here are some tools that we recommend in communication and task distribution across your team:
A good thing to think about when you’re communicating work is having clarity about what you’re communicating. I often use RACI when delegating work.
- RESPONSIBLE – When working with projects think about who’s responsible people or person for the task. It’s simple and nice.
- ACCOUNTABLE – Who’s accountable? It’s always 1 person. It could be the business owner most of the time but you could make your team assistant the person accountable.
- CONSULTED – Who do you want to Consult with?
- INFORMED – Who do you want to keep informed?
USING COMMUNICATION TOOLS
Communication is so important. There’s an old saying that you need to do it 7 times in 7 different ways. I always keep that in mind because virtual communication is so essential. 7 by 7 is a good rule but you don’t have to do it because that’s 49 ways. In formal projects, it’s a good rule of thumb.
VIrtual communication can be done via Zoom, Skype or Facetime. The tool doesn’t matter whether it’s Trello, Skype, Zoom, Whatsapp, etc. – it’s just the vehicle for the message with who you’re communicating with. In Asia, Whatsapp is the tool of the trade and secure. It’s great for groups. It’s so simple. Don’t worry if you don’t have an account. As a leader you have to ask what they have and what works for them and adapt to t.
Online communication is just sometimes sending a text message to your team. Don’t dismiss just yet picking up the phone, which could take more time because it’s an old fashioned method but sometimes people appreciate it. .
USING TASK DELEGATION TOOLS
Trello and/or Asana can be used for communicating about how you’re working, your roles and responsibilities. They are tools you can use to manage tasks which are built on the old kanban approach to visualize work.
Trello is great for visualization and mind mapping. It’s made of lovely cards and that can be filled with information moved across boards. It’s pretty and visually engaging.
Asana is a project tool. The free version of asana is phenomenal. When working with clients, the paid version is great. It gives people ownership of tasks and brings flow.