Join Digital Nomads and Remote Workers to Ask Questions, Share Experiences, Find Remote Jobs and Seek Recommendations.

What Makes a Great Remote Work Culture: Insights and Recommendations

As more and more companies recognize the benefits of remote work, it is becoming a vital part of modern business practices. It not only attracts top talent but provides employees with more flexibility and efficiency in ways never experienced before. However, remote work is not just a simple switch from a physical office. It requires a company to create and maintain an effective remote work culture to reap its benefits fully.

In this article, we will delve into what makes a great remote work culture and provide recommendations for companies to create an efficient and positive virtual work environment.

Encourage Regular Communication

Communication is the backbone of any remote work environment. It is essential to establish clear communication channels and encourage regular check-ins with team members. It fosters a sense of belonging, establishes relationships with colleagues, and helps employees stay connected.

Companies can encourage open communication in a variety of ways. For example, regular video conferencing sessions can help combat feelings of isolation and allow for face-to-face conversation with colleagues. With the help of advanced technology, even virtual coffee breaks or online games can provide opportunities for small talk and impromptu conversations that simulate real-life human interaction.

Furthermore, an efficient communication platform that provides more than just messaging can be very helpful. Platforms like Zoom, Slack, or Microsoft Teams enable video conferencing, screen sharing, file-sharing, and collaborative document editing, making collaboration seamless and efficient.

Clarify Expectations

When employees work remotely, it is crucial for companies to clarify their expectations around work hours, deliverables, and deadlines. Clear expectations, followed by effective communication, help ensure everyone is on the same page and working towards common goals. Clear communication around expectations and deadlines helps remote employees stay focused and motivated, leading to enhanced productivity.

Establishing a timeline and mapping out project deliverables prevents any unnecessary last-minute work or missed deadlines. Moreover, setting mutually agreed-upon work schedules enables employees to balance their work and personal life efficiently.

Provide the Right Tools

To be productive and efficient in a virtual work environment, remote employees need the right tools. This includes access to necessary hardware, software, communication tools, and collaborative platforms. Companies must ensure that their employees have access to the tools they need to do their job effectively. Providing training on how to use these tools can also help remote employees feel more comfortable and confident in their work.

Here are some tools that a remote worker might need:

  • A laptop or desktop.

Required software, including productivity suite, design suite, communication tools, task or project management tools.

  • Reliable internet connection.
  • A telephone or headset.
  • A secure messaging system that ensures confidentiality of corporate data.

Cloud-based tools, like Gsuite, Dropbox, or One Drive, enable employees to access their work from anywhere, making remote working easy and convenient.

Encourage Work-Life Balance

Remote work offers flexibility, which can be a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it allows employees to work at their pace and be efficient at their work. On the other hand, it can lead to workaholism and a lack of physical boundaries between work and personal life. It is important that companies encourage their employees to maintain a healthy work-life balance. This includes setting realistic boundaries around work hours and encouraging employees to take breaks throughout the day.

Providing resources for mental health and wellness, wellbeing support, and work-life balance training can also support employees in finding balance and managing stress. It can help prevent burnout, which can be a significant cause of decreased productivity and health issues.

Celebrate Success

In a virtual work environment, it can be easy to overlook the accomplishments of your team members. Celebrating success is an important part of building a positive team culture. Recognizing milestones, achievements, and contributions can help foster a sense of pride and motivation in the team. Companies can use communication tools like chat channels or social media to publicly recognize and celebrate their employees’ successes.

Managers can also offer rewards and bonuses for exceptional work or client satisfaction. It increases the motivation of the employees to innovate and excel at work.

Foster Autonomy and Trust

Remote work offers employees autonomy and freedom in how they work. Companies should trust their employees to manage their workload and deliverables on their own. Providing clear direction and goals while giving employees space to manage their work independently can foster a sense of trust and accountability. This can lead to increased motivation and productivity in the long run.

Remote employees might need a certain level of independence and trust to thrive in their work environment. It also boosts employee morale when they feel trusted to do their job, leading to increased productivity and better work outcomes.

Create a Virtual Water Cooler

In a physical office, small talk and impromptu conversations are daily occurrences that help connect colleagues. In a virtual environment, it can be challenging to foster this type of interaction. Creating a virtual “water cooler” can help simulate these random interactions. This can include a chat channel dedicated to non-work-related conversations, virtual coffee breaks, or online games. These casual interactions can help employees feel more connected and build stronger relationships with their colleagues.

Implementing these practices requires an intentional and sustained effort. There are additional considerations to keep in mind when developing a remote work culture. These include:

Develop A Clear Policy

Developing a clear company policy for remote work helps ensure all employees are aware of the expectations surrounding remote working, and that potential issues can be addressed appropriately. It should include rules on working hours, communication expectations, confidentiality and security protocols, performance metrics, and hardware or software requirements. Be sure to review and update the policy regularly to keep up with changes in technology and advances in remote work practices.

Manage Time Zone Differences

Remote work allows companies to access global talent, making it more important to consider your team’s time zone differences. Coordinating meetings and deadlines can be a challenge when team members are in different parts of the world. Encourage team members to communicate their availability, use scheduling tools like, and try to schedule meetings or project deadlines that accommodate everyone’s work schedule.

Encourage Socializing

Remote work can be isolating, making socialization critical to building relationships between team members. Consider implementing incentives to encourage virtual team building exercises such as virtual game night, a book club, or online cooking classes. Keep in mind that not everyone enjoys socializing, and some employees may be introverted or uncomfortable with social activities. Encourage employees to participate, but don’t force it.

Regular Check-Ins And Feedback

Regular check-ins and feedback are essential for a successful remote work culture. Managers should be actively engaging with their team members and conducting regular one-on-one check-ins to discuss work progress, goals, and performance. This helps establish clear communication and support employees in achieving their work goals. Feedback should be constructive and actionable, providing opportunities for improvement and praise for accomplishments.

Encourage Remote Networking

Remote work doesn’t mean employees can’t network. Encourage employees to use online platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter to network and connect with other industry professionals. Companies can also offer virtual training programs or webinars to help employees build their skills and knowledge base.

Final Thoughts

Creating and maintaining a great remote work culture takes time and effort. As more companies transition to remote work, it’s essential to establish a supportive and positive environment that encourages growth, development, communication, and collaboration. This can lead to motivated employees, increased productivity, and better work outcomes. By implementing these best practices, companies can create a culture that not only supports remote work but thrives in it.

We Work From Anywhere

Find Remote Jobs, Ask Questions, Connect With Digital Nomads, and Live Your Best Location-Independent Life.