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How to build company culture remotely

How do you create a remote company culture that actually works for your team? Read on as we share our tried and tested tips.
Published 16 Dec 2021
Updated 9 Nov 2022
5 min read
Can Remote Company Culture Survive From Home?

As thousands of workplaces adopt remote work from home practices, maintaining company culture is front of mind for many people and culture managers.

Maybe you feel like you’re fighting an uphill culture battle. Whether that’s as a result of experiencing low employee engagement, productivity or even employee happiness, there are many things you can do to conquer that company culture hill.

So, if you find yourself asking:

  • Can our company culture survive remotely?
  • How do I replicate the in-office buzz virtually?
  • Or why is my team not getting involved like they once did?

We’re here to help with a few handy suggestions.

Remember that it’s ok to make mistakes the first time around – these things take time. Ask remote employees for suggestions and what they want to see or do. At the end of the day, feedback is key and can help you build a great remote team.

So, how do you create a remote work culture that actually works for remote teams?

Read on as we cover how to create a remote-first workplace where everyone is excited to log on every day.

How can you improve remote team culture?

If you’re looking for ideas to improve company team culture when working from home, we’ve rounded up five activities you could do here.

1. Find your virtual office

When working in a remote setting, there’s no denying that most people miss the daily chit-chat with team members. Whether that’s a simple hello in the elevator or chat on your morning coffee run, we lost those face-to-face interactions that we once had in the office.

To find your virtual office, you need to establish a central place for all communication.

Whether this is Employment Hero, Slack, WhatsApp or your company intranet, having one easily accessible spot dedicated to communication is crucial.

While the main priority of this tool is for work, don’t be scared to make it fun!

Try and recreate the same culture and topics of interest that you know were talked about regularly in the office.

  • Have animal lovers in your team? Create an #animalsbeingcute Slack channel where they can share cute pictures of their furry friends.
  • Have gym enthusiasts? Create a channel for team members to share workouts.
  • Have book worms? Create a book virtual club.

Here is some remote work communication software we recommend. The world is your virtual oyster, so get creative!

gif of a dog typing on a keyboard

 

Source: Giphy

2. Ask for regular feedback from your team

We all know that asking for feedback from your team can help foster a culture of trust and growth. Not to mention all of the benefits that come with creating a culture where your team are excited to log on for work each day.

A good way to get feedback from your team is to ask for it regularly in a way that’s easily accessible by your team. Whether this is via employee surveys or asking for your team to rate their happiness (like Employment Hero’s Happiness Score), you can learn a lot from what your team is thinking.

Did you know: that Employment Hero can help you request and gather employee feedback in our Happiness Score and Custom Survey features? Receiving feedback from your team while working remotely can provide you with invaluable insight that can help guide your culture plans.

Get in touch with one of our small business specialists who can show you how Employment Hero can help boost your remote workplace culture.

Read more: How regular feedback develops trust in remote teams

3. Encourage people to get involved

According to a recent study, 63% of employees have spent less time socialising with their team members during the pandemic.

What’s more, the same study revealed that 35% of remote teams are not holding any virtual events to boost company culture. Eek!

If you’re like many businesses that saw employee engagement skyrocket at the start of the pandemic, you may be starting to experience a drop-off from your team.

It’s natural for remote employees to become slightly disengaged or burnt out given what’s happening with the world – however, this can be changed.

How? Take a listen to what we’ve done at Employment Hero.

At Employment Hero, we transitioned our people and culture team to be our remote culture champions and warriors.

What are remote culture champions and warriors? I hear you ask… They are the cheerleaders for our remote culture and actively work to engage our team to get involved in activities.

If you’re looking for some ideas for your own remote culture champions, you could try holding weekly virtual events such as trivia, skribbl sessions, cooking demos or a virtual amazing race.

Having remote culture champions will encourage your team to get involved with activities and look forward to social interaction.

Read more: Wellness tips for virtual teams

4. Organise virtual events and team-building activities

If you’re looking for ways to boost your company culture in a remote environment, organising dedicated time in your teams’ calendars is a great way to get the ball rolling.

Remember that even when you’re apart, there are ways that you can be together – even if it is virtually!

Stuck for ideas? Some of our favourite virtual events at Employment Hero have included:

  • Themed all-hands meetings
  • Trivia
  • The amazing race
  • Skribbl
  • Virtual yoga
  • Cooking demonstrations
  • And virtual chit-chat time!

Skribblo Masterpiece - Employment Hero - remote company culture

A fun Scribbl.io masterpiece drawn by one of our very own Heroes

5. Create a culture of recognition

Did you know that employees feel more productive when they receive praise and recognition? With this knowledge at the forefront, it only makes sense to start weaving recognition into your culture – and pronto!

By incorporating peer-to-peer recognition in your company culture, your team will feel appreciated for their efforts whilst enjoying being recognised publicly for a job well done.

Remember that peer-to-peer recognition can be as simple as acknowledging a colleague to thank them for jumping on a call with only a minute’s notice.

Read more: The key to remote employee engagement

How can you create a culture of recognition virtually?

  • Employment Hero’s Peer-to-Peer Recognition feature
  • Sending thank you notes in the mail or sending a photo of a handwritten thank you note
  • A dedicated portion of your virtual team meeting to acknowledge co-workers
  • Mentions on company communication channels

Peer to Peer Recognition - Employment Hero - remote company culture

Employment Hero’s Peer to Peer Recognition Feature

The wrap up

As we continue to see teams work remotely, you need to dedicate time to boosting company culture. Whether this is by getting your people and culture team to wear the hats of remote culture champions or embedding recognition into your day-to-day, there are many different ways your company culture can survive working from home.

Remember that while we’re working in a physically distant manner, there’s no reason that we can’t be more connected than ever! So go on, get planning!

Here are some insights on why employers should embrace remote work.

Thinking of building a remote team? A global EOR can help. Book a demo today to find out how Employment Hero can help.

Download now.

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