In organizations, communication is of utmost importance between collaborators and work teams for an operational and strategic day-to-day. However, in the days of COVID-19, effective communication has gained exponential significance, by executing our work remotely and from home.
Therefore, I have noticed that when it comes to remote work or Home Office, now is an excellent time to detect areas of opportunity in teamwork thus, in the communication and efficiency of the tasks performed.
These areas of opportunity can be of any kind and any dimension. For instance, detecting a lack of proactivity or accountability in the team, such as internal conflicts and fights between collaborators. I took on the task of detecting some solutions to the most common causes in the main problems of teamwork, listed as follows:
- Micromanaging: This term has been coined in organizational slang for quite some time now. And despite the fact that many people know it, some have not yet understood what it really means. Therefore, they fall into this classic bad practice and generate stress on the team. Micromanaging can be summed up as a BIG lack of trust in your team. The only thing that excessive control generates is an enormous apathy from the collaborator who limits himself to executing a task, without any type of critical thinking, thus invalidating the fact that a professional multidisciplinary team reaches its main objective: to analyze and argue; providing critical solutions and opinions. You must trust your team and accept that they will have errors. A leader’s job is to exploit the skills of his team to the fullest and not to point out every single detail of a task.
- Cause of Micromanaging: Lack of trust – Consequence: Lack of creativity and proactivity.
- Inconsistent and excessive adjustments to the work done: This point goes hand in hand with the previous one. I understand that it is the duty of a leader to be critical of the work done by his team. Changes are necessary in any execution, be it a design, document or project, but we must be careful not to fall into the excessive suggestion of changes that make no sense and have no For instance, if a text is 1 mm to the left in a design is not going to add value or convince your client to buy your service. Before proposing a change to your team’s work always think: does this change that I am going to request add value to the work done? If I don’t make this change, can my team’s performance decrease on this task? It is not about requesting changes just for the sake of it; it is about empowering your team and guiding them, without limiting them, in what is expected of them, yet allowing them to be creative and able to find new solutions and ideas. The excess of changes in the work carried out only denotes little knowledge in the project and the expected value; it generates frustration and resistance in your team.
- Cause of incongruous and excessive adjustments: Lack of strategic knowledge of the project – Consequence: Frustration and resistance in the team.
- Turning feedback into scolding: The areas of opportunity are precisely that, areas or variables in the personality and work of the collaborator that have the opportunity to become something better, day by day. They are not mischief, they are not bad deeds. We must put aside this paternalistic image, in which the leader becomes the dad who “scolds” his team every time he makes a mistake. When we give feedback to our team in a controlled manner, that is, as if we were the judge and / or executioner when someone made a mistake, it generates a very serious problem. The team begins to stop communicating, both horizontally and vertically, out of fear. The team begins to fear both their leader and the organization and stop proposing, giving their opinion, raising their hand when they perceive an error. And, to avoid scolding, they work “underwater,” below the leader’s field of vision. This causes problems to go off when no one expects it, leaving both the leader and the team with no leeway. In general, these problems could have been avoided if the collaborator had trusted his or her leader to guide him or her and, above all, protect him or her.
- Cause of scolding: paternalistic belief in leadership – Consequence: fear and lack of communication in the work team.
- Excess and lack of meetings: Speaking of communication, it is vitally important to understand the midpoint of meetings or work calls. Especially, in remote work we must prioritize the effectiveness of the actual work over a meeting. In addition, it is important to have these meetings scheduled, so that the team can communicate their limitations, tasks performed and review the pending. My recommendation is that you have a meeting, of no more than 15 minutes with your team at the beginning of each day, to review pending and workflow. If there is a topic that needs more time in your meeting, plan to have it with the specific person and not with the whole team, setting a limit of meetings per day or a time frame to have meetings. The excess of meetings can only cause frustration since we take down operating time, but we do not adjust delivery dates, which causes the team to not take adequate time to perform a task and the quality diminishes.
- Cause of excessive meetings: lack of objective communication – Consequence: less time to work and decreased quality at work.
At Mijo! Brands, a creative digital marketing agency with headquarters in Mexico City, Guadalajara and Puerto Vallarta, we have a multidisciplinary team of professionals, specialists in creating digital marketing strategies that will know how to exploit the areas of opportunity of your brand and take it to a next level, until it becomes an unforgettable reference.
David Soffer is a Junior Digital Strategist at Mijo! Brands. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication at the Technological University of Mexico (UNITEC). He complemented his studies by taking courses in editorial design, photography and digital marketing. David has a vocation for customer-focused service and knowledge of human nature, a vision developed through his time in various companies with different cultures and degrees of care. Loyal lover, who only allows for affairs with literature or through the lens of a camera which, in his spare time, he fine-tunes as a freelance photographer.