Ways to Encourage Teamwork While Social Distancing
One of the great devastators of Covid-19 is the uncertainty of it all. This has and continues to cause increased anxiety for many, especially as society continues to reopen and return to work. There is fear over the possibility of getting sick. And anxiety over possibly unknowingly infecting others. All along with navigating political stigmas and keeping up with the constant change of recommendations.
As a working professional, all of this anxiety and feeling of disconnect is coupled by stumbling to find new footing in productivity and teamwork. Teamwork, after all, is touted as one of the most desirable abilities of any professional. So, how do you do it?
How do you remain productive and work as a team while social distancing?
How do you connect and collaborate while navigating uncertainties?
First: Start By Getting Informed
You can more easily adapt to new ways to collaborate and work together while distancing if you’re informed. Make sure you clearly understand and keep up with C.D.C recommendations and your companies policies.
When rules, recommendations, and expectations change quickly, this may seem daunting—but working to understanding the why behind recommendations and policies will allow you to execute them more effectively without feeling so uncertain.
Being well informed often leads to decreased anxiety as it increases your sense of control.
This doesn’t mean consuming pandemic content day-in and day-out. Particularly if what’s scrolling at your fingertips is more about playing on your emotions than it’s giving accurate information.
Rather, stay informed on C.D.C recommendations, your region’s current laws and regulations, and what your company is doing to keep you safe.
Additionally, this will help you know better what’s considered safe and permissible interactions for you and your team. This will allow you to find ways to collaborate and connect with confidence.
Next: Remember You’ve Already Been Adapting
At this point, whether you’re returning to the office or not, you’ve spent the last several months adapting to collaboration done entirely remotely. Assuming you’ve had some success, there is no reason to throw these tools out the window even if you’re back in the office.
When’s working in the same office ever meant every communication needs to be done face to face?
Online Collaboration Tools are Better Than Ever
Additionally, the pandemic causing so many to suddenly work remotely put a lot of pressure on companies to improve their online collaboration tools.
We can always get old school and use a phone call, but we also have Zoom, Slack, Google Hangouts, email. On top of all of that, there are even more team management and project management services such as Trello, Toggl, and Basecamp.
If these programs have worked for your team while working remotely, keep using them! If you haven’t found one that works, adjust, and try again.
Getting and keeping your team operating on an online team management software isn’t just a right-now solution either. Think of how much better prepared you’ll be to pivot in the future should something like this happen again
Then: Get Creative!
Alongside keeping your online tools in the works, you can get creative with how to make the most of your in-person interactions. People need in-person interaction! We’re social by nature – it’s why this is so hard. Even with social distancing, there are ways to make this happen at work.
For example, you might plan an outdoor meeting, allowing you to easily keep distances and reduce risks as you talk more freely. Another option could be facilitating one-on-one meetings. This can make it easier to understand each other if masks need to be kept on. Some teams have even implemented walking meetings to boost creativity and to make it safer to collaborate and brainstorm.
This is where being informed is a great help. You can find creative ways to collaborate as a team in person while keeping everyone safe.
Finally: Get to the Core of Teamwork.
Uncertainty will always be a player in our day-to-day lives, even if it isn’t always as obvious. So as you search for how to be productive – how to still be that team player listed on your resume – remember no matter the circumstances, what teamwork is doesn’t change.
Teamwork, at its core, is a team of people, leaning on one another’s strengths and expertise towards the progress of the same goal. When all else fails, focus on this and keep it simple.
Learn how Optimum Coworking can help your team thrive while working remotely or in the office.