5 Ways To Effectively Manage Your Team Of Freelancers
When you run a solely online business, chances are you will be using freelancers a lot. It is indeed a cost-effective and convenient way to get things done. However, without a management system in place, you might not make the most of your team of freelancers. So here are a few tips to help you get the hang of it.
The first step to effectively directing a team of freelancers is to make sure the team is manageable. This means that whoever you choose to do the job has the requisite skills and qualifications, and will have other soft skills to get everything in order. It will be challenging to have to monitor every step of the problem-solving process, which will be counterproductive. So when hiring, ensure that you are taking your time to assess the candidate, to make sure they won’t bring you even more challenges. At the end of the day, you will have to get value for the money paid, and if they cannot do a good job without your input, then it is not a good idea to hire them. You should be able to trust your team members with the completion of any assigned task; otherwise, you may not reap any benefits from the hire.
Invest in effective communication tools
Most of the time, your team works remotely, and so there is no way to meet up to discuss plans. But not being able to see each other does not mean communication ends there. For communication to be effective, it should be frequent. This allows you to keep track of the progress being made and make changes where necessary. Especially with stay-at-home orders and social distancing protocol in place, many communication channels have been created to help in that regard. Use any of the available technology to your advantage, and see the results in the work that is produced. From video conferencing platforms to chatrooms, you can look into many of them to find out which one will be suitable for your business model. Schedule meetings frequently to speak to your team about how they are doing with their work. Something as simple as emails will also work depending on the type of service you offer. But the fact stays that it should be consistent and transparent.
Another secret to making your team is to stay organized. That means putting everything in order with deadlines and targets well defined. To do this, you will have to know your team inside and out and arrange activities according to the information you gather. For example, create a team work schedule based on each member of your team’s skills, qualifications, and availability. This will help you to make the most out of their contributions and to prevent mediocrity. Also, stay organized by keeping track of work coming in and going out. Use tools like Google docs to create a list of things to get done during the month and who is going to do it etc.
Be clear about your goals
It might be challenging for your team to deliver what you want unless they know what it is. So once you bring a freelancer to join your team, there are a few things to do. First, brief them about your brand. This means informing them about what you do and why you do it and the type of image you hold and want to maintain. This paints a picture of what to expect, but it doesn’t end there. Another thing to do is to clearly define the expectations of them as well. This means explaining what their role is going to be and the type of relationship you intend on keeping with them. Let them know what tasks are included in the job description and which ones are not. Also, be clear about the payment structure and mode of payment so that they can get a sense of trust from you. Once your whole team understands this, it becomes easier and faster to get things done. If possible, train them on your process of doing things so that they can uphold your standard of quality in the work they do. At the same time, try to be flexible as change is required for growth. Goals and objectives may change unexpectedly, and so keep that in mind while setting them. Be sure to communicate with your team as and when they do so that they can continue to deliver quality work without much interference.
Most of the time, freelancers are very good at what they do, and sometimes, the only reason why they freelance is that they haven’t met the right employer who supports or appreciates them. Some also have the raw talent and just need the right leader to harness it with a little push. So, if you find a great freelancer, the best way to keep them on your side is to offer the necessary support. To be supportive means being inspiring and creating an enabling environment for them to be their best selves. This includes providing what they will need to get their work done more efficiently. Apart from tools and equipment, other things like coaching and mentoring can help keep a freelancer focused on your vision and motivate them to bring it to life. It builds a strong and more fulfilling team if they are well motivated, and you will reap the benefits in the work they produce. Another way to support your team of freelancers is to offer them constructive criticism that will help them improve on their skills.
Managing a remote team of freelancers can be challenging, but with the right help, it can be simplified. The main idea is to be consistent with whatever strategy you use while engaging freelancers involved. Always remember that each team member is different and so needs, and the way of doing things will vary. So, do your best to be versatile and open-minded, tweaking the processes used to solve problems where necessary.