How to Foster Team Productivity (and Personal Boundaries) During COVID-19

Foster Team Productivity

The COVID-19 crisis has hit us hard — all of us. This is the time where all of us have had to revise and adjust our daily routines. To learn how to be more compassionate and mindful of each other. Many companies had to turn to remote workflow in a matter of days. And it’s tough. All of a sudden, most of us are working from home, losing a sense of our boundaries, where the work ends and our daily life begins.

Work-life balance is the most precious commodity we have

With most companies turning to remote work, employees struggle to find the right work-life balance in their home offices. Setting a clear boundary between work time and private time is incredibly challenging.

This is why revising our daily routine and making the most of it is a must.

When setting a new routine, openly acknowledge that these circumstances are new and uncomfortable to everyone. That’s why setting time for activities that will help us stay calm is essential. Exercise, meditation, time to watch our favorite series that makes us laugh — any of that should find its place in our daily routines.

Remote work will challenge our well-established routines we had at the office. Tasks that usually took about two hours to get done, take about three-three and a half hours now. It’s not just us, it’s also our colleagues. Some of them might be more accessible in the morning, some of them in the evening, especially if they have small children. This makes communication even more difficult. Take all of this into account, the work day is suddenly three hours longer than usual, leaving you with little time for self care or quality time with your family.

How can we get the most out of our work dedicated time, so we can establish a healthy work-life balance during this crisis? Is it even possible?

Software and Synergy

The last couple of years gave us the realization of smoother edges amid different areas of life. Previously known as work-life balance, the new idea evolved into a more flexible pivoting attitude toward how we earn money and what we use it for; instead of hard borders, the edges blurred.

The notion came from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, which defined work-life integration as “an approach that creates more synergies between all areas that define ‘life’: work, home/family, community, personal well-being, and health.”

Other than personal efforts to master such integration — which is an omnipresent need of our high-tempo global society — the outcome will, in no small part, depend on software. It’s an integral part of our lives, like it or not.

Thus, the question of work-life integration comes down to how we use applications to transparently and effectively govern team collaborationdiscussions, and assets to realize our business goals.

In turn, we get more time for life itself. The axiom is old, but the approach should be new, empowered by two decades of learning and improving.

One of the possible answers may be in opting for remote collaboration tools that mix efficiency, team communication, and centralization of collateral and digital assets with passion, selfless approach, and sense of belonging among team members and stakeholders.

Such a mixture of business success and work-life integration is the place where we get to use the time in the best way and create the right synergy between all parties involved.

The Fundamental Part of Team Collaboration Equation

Probably the most critical segment is to have a proper strategy for effective team collaboration in place.

Now, we’re not going to delve deep into all the details of the process. Instead, the idea is to glance through the most important aspects to have in mind for your strategy development.

Keep sharing your mission every day

Your ‘why’ matters not only to your business but employees as well. Don’t be shy to repeat your meaningful purpose each day. The bottom line is that people will work for you or buy your product not because of the paycheck or price range, but for the passionate sense of belonging to and sharing your mission.

Keep communicating your expectations

If your romantic partner does not know what you want and what you don’t want, you likely face challenges. The same is true in business. Unless your employees or colleagues don’t know what you expect, they might not be able to align efforts and meet your expectations. There is a reason why each military commander explicitly expresses their intentions for each maneuver.

Define goals and communicate them

This one might seem self-explanatory, but the thing is — you should do it daily as an emphatic reminder of sharing the same vision and staying focused as much as possible. Do it holistically, and the final sum will be more than the sum of its parts.

Define the individual strengths of each member of your team

Not everyone can be an astronaut. But guess what? Not everyone wants to be an astronaut. Some guys want to be support staff; others like to take care of the rocket engine, while some prefer to do the countdown. Identify the strengths of every individual in your team, keep nurturing them, and put people in positions where they can contribute the most.

Be honest and open

Nothing beats this one, especially when it’s hard. When we share the same ‘why’ and the same values, being truthful in a psychologically-safe environment comes naturally. In the 2020s, this one’s not even optional; it’s a requirement.

Foster a sense of belonging.

People don’t go the extra mile for bonuses. People do that because they believe they can contribute every single day. To harness these unlimited potentials, create an atmosphere that will empower people to feel inspired.

Unleash creativity, share knowledge

Let your people think out of the box, let them be crazy enough to unearth ideas from the deepest ends of their imagination pools. To catalyze this, give them everything you know. The only purpose of knowledge is to be shared. When these two — creativity and expertise — meet under the right circumstances, the outcome is usually the revelation.

Be compassionate

Last, but not least. These are tough times and everyone is dealing with it in the best way they know-how. Try to organize at least one casual meeting a week, just to keep in check of how everybody’s doing, and if they have all the needed resources to keep up with the work.

The Eco-System

Having a shared organizational and collaborative space to execute your business vision is a must. To choose the one that will fit all of your needs — and give you an excellent platform to create leadership by example — is of paramount importance.

But, the most significant attribute of a proper project management tool comes by the opportunity to celebrate successful teamwork and to reward each team member — in a transparent manner. We’re all creatures of imitation; thus, the possibility to see and emulate proven methods and behaviors may be the best yet quite a hidden attribute of any well-chosen software tool.

Other than improving your overall business efforts, the idea behind the whole endeavor is — to have more time, to feel more integrated into things that matter, and to be able to govern them all meaningfully.

There’s a mantra going viral on social media for the last few weeks: “If you didn’t do X during the crisis — you never lacked time, you lacked self-discipline.”

Take this mantra with a pinch of salt. We’re all striving to make the most of our time during the crisis, but adapting to new situations is always challenging, even when they’re favorable, which isn’t the case for this one. Just keeping up with the usual work pace you had before the crisis is also enough.

That’s why Nifty — which is built for truly transparent collaboration — is the perfect tool for you and your team! It has everything you need, so why not sign up today? 🚀