3 Strategies For Managing A Remote Team

Running a successful remote team might seem like an impossible task. As a business owner who manages a remote team myself, I can assure you, it’s not only possible but also potentially more efficient—provided you adapt your management style to the unique challenges of remote work. Contrary to what some might think, successfully managing a remote team doesn’t mean micro-managing every aspect of your employees’ work. 

In fact, I would argue that leading remotely demands a higher degree of trust than traditional office settings. After all, in an office environment, no manager stands over an employee’s shoulder, tracking their every move. 

Why should it be any different in a remote setting?

In essence, leadership is about trust: You hire someone because you believe in their ability to do the job competently.  The real challenge lies in striking a balance between providing the necessary support and giving them space to perform independently. This brings us to the question: Is running a remote company more efficient than an in-person one? What are the advantages and disadvantages of each?

To shed light on this, Sean Campbell, CEO of Cascades Insights, a consulting firm specializing in customized market research and marketing services for B2B technology companies, conducted a poll among his LinkedIn followers. 

He asked them about their productivity levels after switching to remote work. Interestingly, 80% responded that their productivity had increased. However, it’s worth noting that there’s still a significant minority, about 20%, who feel more productive in a traditional office environment. So, how do we ensure that we hire employees who can maintain or even enhance their productivity when working remotely? How can we measure the efficiency of our remote team management?

Let’s explore Sean’s three strategies for managing a remote team, from the hiring process to day-to-day management.

1. Hire People who Write Well

Written communication skills are highly overlooked when hiring because many find more value on oral communication skills than it. But, I tell you this: In a remote setting, you don’t get the advantage of just popping into someone’s cubby asking for a quick discussion. In a remote setting, you write emails and chat on communication channels most of the time.

So, hiring someone who knows how to express their thoughts and ideas to writing is more valuable than someone who is expressive verbally but cannot pass a message through writing.

As Sean says, if you can hire someone who can write effectively or can be trained to, you won’t have to run into a scenario similar to his client’s who didn’t know how incoherent his colleagues were until COVID happened.

His client’s colleagues couldn’t write one single coherent argument or even one good sentence. Most likely because his people were not used to writing to discuss problems or ideas. In a remote setup, you need employees who know how to express their ideas through text. That is the first thing you look for when hiring someone. Either they know how to write, or can learn fast and coachable.

2. Make it Okay to Not Know

The second thing you need to know to manage a successful remote team is creating an environment where it is okay to not know something. Many employees fear looking incapable so they accept every single task thrown at them even if they don’t know how to do it. It hinders productivity and prevents employees from asking the necessary questions.

So, as a manager or a team leader, establish a culture where it is okay to admit ignorance and make it normal to ask questions. That way, you can facilitate better communication and effective collaboration between everyone in the team, ultimately leading to innovative solutions and improved productivity.

Remember: when you bring in someone new, they will always go through a phase where they wouldn’t admit they don’t know something.


Because of fear: fear of losing the job they were hired for.

Always encourage them to ask questions. Don’t leave them in the unknown for hours, confused. The minute you start to build that culture, the more productive they will be.

3. Normalize Ad-Hoc Interactions

In order to succeed on the second step, this third one is essential: normalize ad-hoc interactions. While structured meetings are important, spontaneous ones foster connection especially in the virtual setup. This might seem counterintuitive in the digital age where everything seems to be scheduled and meetings are often booked in 30-minute chunks.  Why would anyone wait for the weekly meeting to happen before speaking about something when random interactions are okay.


By focusing on hiring good writers, fostering a culture of open communication, and normalizing informal interactions, you can lead your remote team to success. As Sean Campbell has demonstrated, these strategies can lead to more innovative solutions, improved productivity, and a healthier, more engaged remote team. But remember, these are not one-time fixes: They require consistent effort and commitment from both leaders and team members.

Are you ready to implement these strategies in your remote team management? Or perhaps you have already been using some of them and have insights to share? Either way, we’d love to hear from you. 

Want to know more management strategies?

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