Process is a feared word for many business leaders. Though daunting at first, processes help create structure for people to lean on and standards that ensure consistency. They save time and empower your team members to move forward and successfully perform their work.Whether your entire company is in-house, fully or partially dispersed, teams work best when they know what they should do and why. When company processes are clear, you have better insight into where things can be improved for even greater efficiency. We’ve found having a distributed team often helps businesses kick start creating these processes that support organized work.Here are three tips for creating solid procedures to help you lead your remote team:
1. Create handbooks and manuals
Writing down how you work is step one to scaling your team. Documenting each department’s unique procedures helps you both stay organized and also to transmit information across teams, regardless of location. This documentation comes in especially handy for quick onboarding of new teammates. With well documented processes, the work can seamlessly be handed off from one person to the next, smoothing the new hire process.
2. Avoid the complexity trap
Keep your processes concise and to the point. Clarity helps eliminate misunderstandings and also trains you to really hone in on what matters and communicate that to your team members. Don’t worry, your processes aren’t set in stone. In fact, processes are meant to be altered and to develop with your company. You can (and should) make changes as you grow. You’ll find that each new person you hire helps you learn more about how you are working and what needs to be added to or changed in your company procedures. Over time, this gives you deeper insights into how you can develop better systems for working across your team to reach a higher level of success.
3. Support the buddy system
When bringing on someone new, we suggest pairing him or her up with a more experienced teammate who can help your new long distance team member “learn the ropes”. This will help the new hire feel supported by having someone they can get to know right away and to direct questions to. At VentureDevs, each new teammate is paired with a buddy who works on the same team or within the same department. This buddy is helps the new team member learn all about VentureDevs — teaching them about our processes of operation and helping him or her feel at home.When working in a traditional office environment, you are not as pressed to get systems in place, and your company can easily fall victim to disorganization. One of the side effects of utilizing a remote team to scale your company is that it pushes you to create and document your procedures sooner than you otherwise would. This can really help you expedite your company’s growth by making it easier to add new teammates, to get them started quickly without confusion, and to regularly find new opportunities for improvement.