Collaborating in the remote work age can be difficult.

Our Vice President of Sales Michelle Lewnes-Dadas recently joined AIM/R for a webinar titled, “Managing Through Disruption – A Discussion for Rep Agencies in a COVID-19 Environment.” During her portion of the webinar, Michelle shared how our agency is succeeding in today’s business environment.

We’ll share the CliffsNotes version of her section here. AIM/R also offers a comprehensive COVID-19 Tool Kit for reps to stay on top of the latest news.

Project Collaboration Platforms

For those on the Office 365 platform, Microsoft Teams is a fantastic internal platform for connecting your team. Your team can instant message or have “face-to-face” virtual catchups through the chat feature. The chat function takes content out of their email inboxes and also allows for personal connection via the video feature.

Additionally, your team can update reports and collaborate on presentations via the Teams cloud without losing track of the most current version. We have found this service to have significant value to our team while conducting business remotely.

Microsoft Teams Overview

While we don’t use Slack in our company, there are countless proponents of this service as well. Office 365 users already have access to Teams, but Slack may be a good option for those using any non-Microsoft services.

Tracking tools, such as Microsoft’s To-Do or Planner, are also a great way to stay on top of project goals and completion deadlines. These can also be built into Teams to streamline communication.

Virtual Meeting Platforms

 In the spirit of innovation, the recent lockdowns have pushed us to explore services outside of GoToMeeting, which we’ve used for several years now.

Since we’ve had success with the platform, our team continues to use GoToMeeting for daily meetings both internally and with customers. We’ve found the service to remain reliable and deliver solid results when conducting business with our manufacturers during this time. GoTo has also helped us continue to build our culture by maintaining a personal connection within the sales team. We even enjoy a weekly team happy hour using this service.

GoToMeeting PSI WFH Conference Call

We’ve also used our remote working time to explore Zoom. The platform’s PR status has risen prominently over the past month, and despite concerns with hackers “Zoombombing” chats over the last two weeks, Zoom is one of the tope virtual meeting platforms on the market.

We also suggest offering windows for your employees to reserve platforms in the evening hours for personal use. We are all in the same boat when it comes to interpersonal interactions; getting time – even virtually – with family is pivotal. Encourage your team to reserve a spot on your virtual meeting host to enjoy some much-needed family time with their loved ones.

Learn New Skills

 We are doing our best to maintain business as usual, but the reality is our team may find they have extra time on their hands at specific points in the day. Fortunately, many of our manufacturers have a wealth of available training built into their internal rep platforms.

These resources have allowed us to maintain structure within our teams’ calendars and use these last few weeks to keep growing our skill sets. Put a schedule together for your team and encourage them to come out on the other side of this with an enhanced skill set to grow business.

Finally, encourage your team to use any “down” time to explore those new skills they haven’t had the time to learn. Everyone has a list, and the odds are good that their newfound ability will benefit your business in the long run.