What a difference 2020 made to the way companies operate. Aside from the obvious factors of furloughed staff and disrupted supply chains, the way that teams collaborate is a far cry from the format used pre-pandemic.
The stand-up meeting has been popular with all types of businesses for many years. Designed around speed and efficiency, it has unfortunately been widely replaced with the video call or updates via project management apps such as Basecamp and Slack. Whilst this has minimised the spread of coronavirus, it’s also had the knock-on effect of lower employee engagement. In turn, there has been a return of firefighting behaviours, as a lack of daily accountability meetings with visual management tools causes discrepancies in the sharing of core information.
Despite these setbacks, we believe that the show must go on! If your business has seen a reduction in productivity, communication and consistency, Clarity can help you to get back on track by using visual management boards to full effect even when working remotely. Don’t let Covid stop communication, collaboration and compliance!
Some suggestions from Clarity
Working on site. If your employees are still based on the premises, social distancing measures will probably be restricting how they meet to discuss actions and progress. Rather than waiting for return of everyone being able to assemble in one place, such as a meeting room, try smaller cell-level meetings within individual departments. The localised nature of the meeting will help to facilitate a more focused and dynamic approach, followed by each department manager then meeting either in person or digitally to deliver the key points.
Working remotely. Many businesses are currently working from home, making video meetings the best option. If this is the case for you, the meeting facilitator should angle their webcam so that it gives a clear view of physical visual management boards. An image of the completed board can then be circulated to attendees via email or another platform after the meeting.
Encourage regular catch-ups. When it comes to individual staff who need to update each other whilst working remotely, encourage them to do so through a video call rather than an email. Aside from fuelling more in-depth discussion and creativity, it’s also a great way for employees to stay connected, digest information more efficiently, and simultaneously maintain higher levels of mental wellbeing.
Use a variety of digital tools. As mentioned above, project management apps (ClickUp, Monday, Asana etc) are very useful both during the pandemic and in general. However, don’t underestimate the effectiveness of simpler tools such as WhatsApp, as a group chat can be the perfect place for sharing images of visual management boards quickly, easily and securely. The more accessible the information is to your employees, the more thoroughly they can engage with it.
Collaborative software platforms. We recommend using Microsoft Whiteboard during a Teams session. We’ve been doing this ourselves as a means of recreating visual management boards when meeting remotely with team members and clients. The results have been fantastic!
Don’t stop having meetings!
To discover how we can help you to engage your employees even when socially distancing and working remotely, get in touch on 01482 296451 or fill in our contact form.