Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Building Effective Communication and Work-Life Balance in Remote Teams: Insights from Jaskirat Jassal, CEO of GreetPool

Leaders Perception Magazine is currently running an interview series called – Building a Successful Remote Work Culture: Discussing strategies and best practices for fostering a productive and engaged remote workforce, addressing topics like communication, collaboration tools, work-life balance, and employee well-being

Interviewee Name: Jaskirat Jassal

Company: GreetPool

Position: Founder, CEO

Linkedin Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jaskiratjassal/

Jaskirat Jassal’s favorite quote: “ One of my favorite quotes is by Maya Angelou: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

This quote resonates with me because it highlights the profound impact that our actions and interactions can have on others. It serves as a reminder to approach every interaction with kindness, empathy, and the intention to leave a positive and lasting impression.

This quote also reflects GreetPool’s ethos – to create a platform that enables remote teams to make their colleagues feel seen, appreciated, and connected. We understand that remote work can sometimes feel isolating, and our aim is to bridge that gap by providing a means for teams to express their support, celebrate milestones, and strengthen their bonds.

We had the privilege of interviewing Jaskirat Jassal, the founder and CEO of GreetPool, a digital group greeting card platform that enables remote teams to celebrate special moments and foster a sense of community. Jaskirat’s journey in the remote work industry began with a deep fascination for technology’s potential to connect people across distances. Motivated by his own experiences of being unable to celebrate team events while stuck in another country during the COVID-19 lockdowns, he embarked on a mission to create a platform that would enhance remote team dynamics, collaboration, and employee engagement. In our interview, Jaskirat shares valuable insights and strategies for effective communication, collaboration, and work-life balance in remote teams. He emphasizes the importance of centralized tools like Slack for real-time conversations and communication, and platforms like Monday.com, Jira, Gsuite, Miro, and Canva for project management, collaboration, and file sharing. Jaskirat also highlights the significance of regular check-ins, team meetings, and virtual team-building activities to foster connection and build a positive team culture.

The Interview

Thank you so much for joining us today! Tell us a little bit about yourself. What is your backstory?

Jaskirat Jassal : Thank you for inviting me for an interview! I’m excited to share my backstory with you.

My name is Jaskirat and I’m the founder of GreetPool – a digital group greeting card platform that facilitates collaborative group ecards for remote teams. My journey in the remote work industry began with a deep fascination for the potential of technology to bridge distances and bring people together.

Before starting GreetPool, I worked in the tech industry, witnessing firsthand the rapid transformation of traditional office environments into remote and distributed teams. Covid19 changed the way is workplaces, and the way work is conducted. This shift presented both opportunities and challenges, and it inspired me to explore ways to enhance remote team dynamics, collaboration, and employee engagement.

The idea behind GreetPool originated from my own need to connect with my team when I got stuck in another country for 6 months due to COVID 19 lockdowns and travel restrictions. We had no means to celebrate team events together, and all the meaningful milestones, such as birthdays, weddings, babies, felt incomplete as there was no one around to celebrate it with.

Recognizing the power of meaningful connections and shared experiences, I embarked on a mission to create a platform that would enable remote teams to celebrate special moments, foster a sense of community, and strengthen their bonds. That’s how GreetPool came into being.

I am passionate about sharing my knowledge and expertise to help others navigate the remote work landscape successfully. Through GreetPool and my role as CEO, I’m committed to driving positive change in remote work culture and enabling organizations to create a vibrant and engaged remote workforce.

Thank you once again for having me. I look forward to diving deeper into the discussion on building a successful remote work culture and providing valuable insights to your audience.

How do you ensure effective communication and collaboration among remote team members? Can you share any specific tools or practices that have been particularly effective for your organization?

Jaskirat Jassal : Ensuring effective communication and collaboration among remote team members is paramount for the success of any remote organization. Everything that a team member needs for their work should be ‘visible’ and ‘accessible’ easily. Having centralized tools with build in team features makes sure the work gets done autonomously

At GreetPool, we have implemented several strategies, tools, and practices that have proven to be particularly effective.

Tool that have been effective

Slack – We leverage instant messaging platform Slack, where the team can have real-time conversations, share updates, and ask questions. It provides a centralized space for communication, making it easier for remote team members to stay informed and engaged.

We also use Monday.com for project management, Jira for ticketing, Gsuite for online collaborative document creation and sharing, Miro for brainstorming and collaborative mockups, and Canva for Designs among a few other smaller tools here and there.

These tools enable us to assign tasks, set deadlines, track progress, and share files. They provide transparency, accountability, and a centralized hub for remote team members to collaborate efficiently on projects.

And some practices that have been effective in keeping the team feel connected:

Regular Check-ins and Team Meetings: To foster ongoing communication and alignment, we schedule regular check-ins and team meetings. These meetings can take the form of video conferences or audio calls, depending on the team’s preferences and needs. It allows us to discuss project updates, address challenges, and provide feedback. Regular interactions help build rapport and trust among team members and ensure everyone is on the same page.
Virtual Team-Building Activities: To foster a sense of community and connection among remote team members, we organize virtual team-building activities. These can include online games, virtual happy hours, or team challenges. These activities provide opportunities for team members to interact in a relaxed setting, strengthening relationships and promoting a positive team culture.
And of course, we celebrate everyone’s birthday, work anniversary, or a personal event such as wedding, baby, etc with our collaborative group ecards that all members sign and customize with fun messages, images, stickers, etc.

Maintaining work-life balance can be challenging in a remote work environment. What strategies do you recommend for remote employees to create boundaries between work and personal life? How can organizations support their employees in achieving a healthy work-life balance?

Jaskirat Jassal : Maintaining work-life balance is indeed a crucial aspect of remote work, and it requires proactive measures from both remote employees and organizations. Here are some strategies I recommend for remote employees to create boundaries between work and personal life:

1) Establish a Dedicated Workspace: Designate a specific area in your home as your workspace. This helps create a physical separation between your work and personal life, signaling to your brain that when you’re in that space, you are in work mode. Having a dedicated workspace also minimizes distractions and enhances focus.

2) Set a Working Schedule: Establish clear boundaries around your working hours and communicate them to your team and stakeholders. Define when you start and end your workday, take breaks, and ensure you have time for personal activities. Adhering to a schedule helps create a structure and prevents work from seeping into personal time.

3) Communicate Your Availability: Clearly communicate your availability to your team members, setting expectations around response times. Send a message to group, or set a status on Slack to let people know when you are away or when you will be back. It’s essential to establish reasonable response windows to manage others’ expectations while still having time for uninterrupted deep work or personal activities.

Leaders Perception Magazine would like to thank Jaskirat Jassal and GreetPool for the time dedicated to completing this interview and sharing their valuable insights with our readers!

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