Remote work

What Is Remote Company Culture (+ Tips On How to Build A Great One)

Ditch cubicles, build culture! Master the art of remote company culture with tips, tricks, and a game-changing tool like Colleague Connect.

Nathan Goldstein

Co-founder of Together

Published on 

February 15, 2024

Updated on 

Time to Read

mins read time

54% of employees are working full-time in the office, yet only 19% prefer this arrangement. In fact, 66% believe that working from home should be a legal right.

As hybrid work gains popularity, and the traditional workplace continues to evolve, there’s a growing need to adopt new ways to build a strong company culture. But how do you build a culture when part of your team works from the office while the rest is scattered across the world?

You do it by building a remote company culture.

What is remote company culture?

Remote company culture refers to the shared values, beliefs, practices, and behaviors of an organization whose employees predominantly work from remote locations. This type of culture is built on trust and clear communication. It values outcomes over supervision, prioritizes flexibility, and makes use of the latest technology to build a productive and engaging work environment in the digital space.

Importance of remote company culture 

Remember the days of quick coffee chats and spontaneous after-work drinks? In the era of remote work, building a thriving company culture might seem daunting, but its importance can't be overstated. Here's why:

  1. Happy employees, productive powerhouse - Imagine a thriving team, buzzing with collaboration and engagement, even miles apart. A positive remote culture fuels this reality. Happy employees are 12% more productive, meaning a connected and valued remote team becomes a powerful engine for your business.
  1. Retention rocket - In today's competitive talent landscape, loyalty matters. A positive remote culture offers the flexibility and sense of belonging that top talent craves. Addressing isolation and promoting engagement, you reduce costly turnover, saving resources and retaining your best people.
  1. Beyond the bottom line - While a strong remote culture boosts employee happiness and retention, its impact is broader. It attracts talent, fuels innovation, and creates a strong brand reputation. When everyone feels aligned with the company's mission and values, success naturally follows. Imagine a remote team known for its collaborative spirit and innovative approach, attracting talent and strengthening your employer brand.
  1. Belonging beyond borders - While geographically disconnected, remote work finds its bridge in culture. Imagine fostering laughter and connections through virtual team building, celebrating global achievements with recognition programs, and building shared purpose through open communication channels. Create an inclusive environment where everyone feels valued and part of something bigger, regardless of location.
  1. Purpose in pixels - Remote work can sometimes feel detached from the bigger picture. A strong remote culture connects everyone to a shared purpose. Regular communication, transparent decision-making, and celebrating achievements together solidify that feeling of working towards something meaningful. Imagine a remote team where everyone feels excited about contributing to the company's mission, their individual efforts woven into the collective tapestry of success.

Ditch the happy-employee facade! Thriving remote culture builds a sustainable powerhouse in the decentralized work landscape. 

Next, we'll explore practical strategies and tools to cultivate a connected, thriving culture that propels your organization to new heights!

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What challenges do organizations face in building a remote company culture?

While remote work unlocks many advantages like flexibility, improved work-life balance, and access to a wider talent pool, nurturing a strong company culture in this decentralized setting presents unique challenges. Building a sense of belonging, collaboration, and shared purpose in this virtual landscape requires deliberate effort and strategic planning. 

Let's delve into the specific hurdles organizations face when cultivating a thriving remote company culture:

  1. Maintaining employee engagement and morale - According to a remote work culture study by Workplace Intelligence, 72% of people who work remotely feel that they don’t socialize enough. This feeling of being isolated leads to disengagement and lower morale. Without the natural interactions of an office, keeping employees connected and enthusiastic can be difficult.
  1. Fostering collaboration and teamwork - Remote work introduces hurdles in promoting collaboration and teamwork. A review of scientific papers and patents highlighted that in-person interactions significantly boosted innovation, with geographically dispersed teams 22% less likely to generate groundbreaking patents and 27% less likely to produce pioneering research than city-based colleagues.
  1. Addressing feelings of isolation and disconnection - Remote work can feel lonely. Buffer's 2022 State of Remote Work report revealed that 24% of remote workers struggle with a sense of belonging, potentially leading to burnout and job dissatisfaction.
  1. Establishing and maintaining a sense of company identity and values - With a geographically dispersed workforce, creating a shared understanding of the company's mission, vision, and values becomes trickier. A lack of alignment can lead to confusion and hinder cultural development.
  1. Overcoming communication barriers and ensuring effective channels - Miscommunication thrives in virtual spaces. A Gallup survey found that 23% of remote workers cite reduced cross-functional communication and collaboration as a top concern, impacting decision-making and project efficiency.

These are just some of the challenges faced by organizations looking to cultivate a thriving remote company culture. Understanding these hurdles is crucial for developing effective strategies to overcome them and build a connected, engaged, and productive remote workforce.

Strategies for building remote company culture 

In today's decentralized world, building a sense of belonging, collaboration, and shared purpose requires deliberate effort and strategic planning. But fear not! This section dives into practical strategies to bridge the physical distance and cultivate a thriving remote team, one that thrives on connection, collaboration, and well-being.

1. Keep everyone connected and informed

Communication is the lifeblood of any successful team, and in a remote setting, it takes on even greater importance. Here's how to ensure clear, open, and frequent communication that strengthens trust and keeps everyone informed:

  • Do regular check-ins - Go beyond mere work updates. Schedule individual and team meetings for casual conversations that build rapport and understanding. Ask about their week, share personal anecdotes, and create a space for genuine connection.
  • Ensure transparency - Create an environment of open communication by sharing company news, updates, and decisions openly. This increases trust, reduces anxiety, and keeps everyone aligned with the bigger picture.
  • Embrace diverse channels - Don't limit yourself to one-size-fits-all communication. Utilize video calls for important announcements, instant messaging for quick updates, and project management tools for ongoing collaboration. Cater to different communication preferences and create a flexible communication hub.

Remember, communication is a two-way street. Encourage feedback, actively listen to employee concerns, and create a safe space for open dialogue.

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2. Ace teamwork in a virtual world

Gone are the days of huddling around whiteboards. But fear not, collaboration thrives in remote settings, too! Here are some tips to ensure seamless teamwork, even when miles apart:

  • Clarity is key - Set clear project goals, establish individual expectations, and outline roles and responsibilities. This improves accountability and shared ownership, and prevents confusion.
  • Tech tools to the rescue - Leverage project management platforms like Asana or Trello, shared documents through Google Docs, and online whiteboards like Miro to facilitate seamless collaboration and real-time updates.
  • Break the ice and build camaraderie - Virtual team building doesn't have to be awkward! Organize online games, social events, or even virtual escape rooms to break the ice, build relationships, and encourage fun outside of work. Remember, strong teams are built on shared experiences, even if they're virtual ones.

Remember, collaboration is an ongoing process. Regularly assess your team's needs, adapt your approach based on feedback, and celebrate collaborative successes to keep the momentum going.

3. Prioritize employee happiness and health

Working remotely offers flexibility, but it can also blur the lines between work and personal life. Here's how to prioritize employee well-being and create a healthy work-life balance:

  • Flexibility matters - Offer flexible work schedules to accommodate individual needs and promote a healthy work-life balance. Encourage employees to take breaks, disconnect after work hours, and prioritize personal time.
  • Virtual wellness initiatives - Go beyond traditional wellness programs. Organize online yoga sessions, meditation workshops, or even virtual cooking classes to promote physical and mental well-being. Encourage healthy habits and create a supportive environment for self-care.
  • Don't be a stranger - Schedule regular check-ins to discuss well-being, not just work performance. Ask about their challenges, offer support, and remind them to prioritize their physical and mental health. Remember, happy and healthy employees are productive employees.

Creating a thriving remote company culture is a continuous journey. Continuously gather feedback, adapt your strategies, and celebrate successes along the way. By prioritizing connection, collaboration, and well-being, you can create a vibrant and successful remote team that thrives in the future of work.

Leveraging Colleague Connect to form valuable remote connections 

In the dynamic landscape of remote work, physical distance can create a formidable obstacle to building strong relationships and fostering a vibrant company culture. This is where innovative tools like Colleague Connect emerge as game-changers, bridging the gap and enabling genuine connections among geographically dispersed employees. 

Think of Connect Colleague as a virtual bridge, a platform specifically designed to connect remote employees across an organization. It goes beyond traditional communication tools, facilitating peer mentorship programs, networking opportunities, and knowledge-sharing initiatives – all aimed at building a strong sense of belonging and collaboration within a decentralized workforce.

So, how does Colleague Connect address the specific challenges of remote work culture? Let's delve into the key areas where it makes a difference:

1. Building relationships

Remote work can often lead to feelings of isolation and a lack of connection with colleagues outside of immediate teams. Colleague Connect empowers employees to break free from these boundaries. 

The platform facilitates peer mentorship programs, connecting individuals based on shared interests, skills, or career goals. This nurtures a sense of belonging and camaraderie, essential ingredients for a strong remote company culture. 

Imagine the impact of connecting a marketing specialist in New York with a design expert in London, working on a collaborative project and building a lasting friendship in the process.

2. Knowledge sharing and collaboration

Effective communication and collaboration are crucial for remote teams. Colleague Connect acts as a virtual hub where employees can form learning partnerships and collaborate on projects. 

Through its intuitive features, individuals can easily share knowledge, expertise, and resources, regardless of their physical location. This creates a culture of continuous learning and innovation, as teams can tap into diverse perspectives and expertise, even across continents. 

3. Supporting professional growth

By leveraging Colleague Connect, organizations can strengthen their remote company culture by promoting communication, collaboration, and personal connections among employees. This, in turn, enhances employee engagement, productivity, and satisfaction in the remote work environment, ultimately driving organizational success. 

A connected and engaged workforce is a happy and productive workforce, leading to increased innovation, improved problem-solving, and ultimately, a stronger bottom line.

Colleague Connect programs organically build a thriving remote company culture. Its ability to bridge gaps, foster connections, and empower employees makes it a valuable asset for any organization looking to thrive in the decentralized world of work. By investing in tools and strategies that prioritize connection, collaboration, and well-being, organizations can unlock the full potential of their remote workforce and achieve remarkable results.

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3 Tips for measuring remote company culture programs

Cultivating a thriving remote company culture is an ongoing journey, and just like any journey, it's important to track your progress. But how do you measure the effectiveness of your initiatives in a decentralized environment? 

This section equips you with the tools and tips to gauge your success and make data-driven decisions to continuously improve.

1. Measure metrics that matter

While traditional metrics like employee satisfaction surveys can offer valuable insights, here are some key metrics to focus on when assessing your remote culture programs:

  • Engagement and participation - Track participation rates in your initiatives, like virtual team-building events, mentorship programs, and knowledge-sharing sessions. High participation indicates a positive culture of engagement and connection.
  • Communication effectiveness - Measure the frequency and effectiveness of communication across different channels. Utilize tools that track message volume, response rates, and sentiment analysis to identify areas for improvement.
  • Collaboration success - Monitor the outcomes of collaborative projects, tracking factors like project completion times, team satisfaction, and knowledge transfer within teams.
  • Employee well-being - Regularly assess employee well-being through surveys and focus groups. Track metrics like stress levels, work-life balance, and feelings of isolation to gauge the overall health of your remote culture.

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2. Make feedback your friend

Don't rely on data alone! Actively solicit feedback from your remote employees through surveys, focus groups, and one-on-one conversations. Ask them about their experiences, challenges, and suggestions for improvement. Remember, their voices are crucial in understanding the true impact of your initiatives.

3. Strive for continuous improvement

Based on your data and feedback, identify areas where your culture programs can be strengthened. Adapt your strategies, experiment with new tools, and celebrate your successes along the way. Remember, creating a strong remote culture is a marathon, not a sprint.

4. Leverage all the tools you can

Several online tools can help you track metrics and gather feedback. Consider using platforms like:

  • Pulse surveys - Gather real-time feedback on specific topics.
  • Engagement platforms - Track participation in company events and initiatives.
  • Collaboration tools - Monitor project progress and team communication.
  • Employee feedback platforms - Collect anonymous or open-ended feedback.

Leverage metrics, feedback mechanisms, and continuous improvement to guarantee your remote culture programs benefit your employees and organization directly. Forget just "feeling good"; a strong remote culture drives business success through a happy, engaged, and connected workforce.

Embrace the Remote Future with Colleague Connect

The world of work is changing, and remote teams are here to stay. Forget location limitations; success hinges on connection, collaboration, and a positive culture that empowers everyone to thrive.

This guide has equipped you with the knowledge and tools to navigate this exciting new frontier:

  • Invest in connection - Foster meaningful interactions, build trust, and bridge the distance through virtual activities and open communication.
  • Embrace collaboration - Utilize technology, create clear expectations, and celebrate teamwork, even across time zones.
  • Prioritize well-being - Encourage work-life balance, promote mental health, and provide support for your remote team.
  • Be data-driven - Track progress, gather feedback, and continuously improve your remote culture initiatives.

Ready to take your remote team to the next level? Look no further than Colleague Connect! This innovative platform empowers your remote workforce by nurturing meaningful connections, facilitating collaboration, and supporting professional growth.

Schedule a demo today and see how Colleague Connect can help you build a team that's connected, engaged, and ready to conquer the future of work.

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