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Workplace engagement: How to create a positive workplace culture for your distributed workforce

Workplace engagement: How to create a positive workplace culture for your distributed workforce

May 3, 2023

5 mins read

Employee Experience

Traditionally, establishing a workplace culture has been done within a physical office space. But as more companies move toward a remote work environment, it can be difficult to create a workplace culture when there isn’t an actual workplace. During the pandemic, companies moved their employees to a remote work environment for safety reasons. In those emergency situations, a workplace culture might not have been a top priority. 

But now three years later, with companies either choosing to stay remote or retire their physical office space with intention, it’s important for companies to have a workplace culture, even with a distributed team. Workplace engagement didn’t just go away with the physical building. The company might possess the same values, ethics, and beliefs, but when there are no people in a physical office environment, that will most definitely play out in a very different way. 

Workplace culture is at the heart of every company. It represents who a company is, what their core values are, and what they want the world to know about them. And just because they may not have employees sitting at desks at a headquarters doesn’t mean they shouldn’t have one. In fact, the argument could be that it’s even more important for remote work settings. 

With that in mind, here are 5 considerations for addressing workplace engagement by creating a remote workplace culture.

Read more: 8 ways to boost your remote team morale

Communication is key 

While you might have already had policies and procedures regarding office communication, with a remote-first work environment, that might need to be adapted to fit the new setting. Organizing both formal and informal communication is key, the former helping to support business goals and objectives, and the latter, to help build trust.

Whether you consider increasing the frequency, as well as the methods you use, it’s also important to set limits and expectations when it comes to communication.

Foster social interaction 

Socializing online is not a new concept, but especially after a few years of Zoom hangouts, connecting virtually might be a little tiresome. Consider utilizing services like Confetti, which creates custom virtual events, or utilizing coworking spaces to create opportunities for teams to meet in person. And don’t consider work meetings to be enough time for teams to socialize. Intentionally and explicitly creating opportunities for this type of informal communication is important for your team, both personally and professionally. You may need to set up specific time blocks during the week or month dedicated to socializing.

Implement collaborative processes 

One of the biggest challenges in a remote work setting can be collaboration. Thankfully, there are various technologies that can support this in a virtual setting. But, do not discount the value of in-person collaboration. You can create all-hands workweeks, monthly brainstorming sessions, or even bi-yearly team meet-ups in one location to help foster the collaborative process. 

Provide opportunities for personal and professional development 

There’s a good chance your workplace wasn’t always about work. Your company cared about your people and offered them opportunities to grow, both personally and professionally. That shouldn’t change just because you no longer have a physical office. Provide your team with ways to advance themselves both personally and professionally. 

Bring it to life through management 

Your management team sets the tone for your workplace culture. It’s important for your team to see your higher level executives living your company’s values, even if it’s something small like cameras on during meetings, or big, like shutting down on time at the end of the work day and not emailing or calling before or after work hours.