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How To Lead A Team As A Remote Worker

Managing a team poses challenges even when everyone's in the same office. So how can a Managing Director lead an entire team from a remote office? Adam Griffith manages to do just that. He's Managing Director of Get Started, a digital agency based in Melbourne, and he does it all from his home office over 300km away in Wodonga.
Entrepreneur Adam Griffith
Company Get Started
Business type Digital Agency
Founded 1999
Head office Melbourne
Contact details www.getstarted.com.au


"Daily check-ins hold everyone accountable to their workload, keep the team focused, and encourage everyone to treat their work with integrity."
- Adam Griffith

Once Get Started began to implement remote work, a whole range of possibilities opened up. Now with over 50 staff across Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Bali, Get Started hires the best of the best, regardless of where they live. But to reap the rewards of remote work, Get Started needed to establish the infrastructure required to do it effectively.

Go all in for the latest tech

As a digital agency, Get Started is a big believer in the power of technology. When Adam started leading his team remotely, Get Started made a big investment in the tools and software necessary to do it.

The team uses the entire suite of Google’s software, including Google Hangouts, Google Docs and Google Chromebox, which they have installed in every meeting room. Being able to check in with his team via video calls gives Adam a presence in the office. With Google Hangouts, it's almost as though he’s in the room. Adam schedules at least one video chat per day to ensure he gets face-to-face time with his team.

Adam also has an in-office robot (a Robot Double called Michael Dublé) that allows him to "move around the office" and find team members who may not be at their desk.

On a simpler note, he also relies on the instant messaging power of Slack, an online communication tool he uses for both project work and office chitchat. According to Adam, "Slack channels allow for people to engage with topics that interest them, so 'watercooler' chat becomes a meaningful way to build relationships within a team". Plus, these conversations help Adam become more integrated in the office.

Share daily intentions with the team

To hold everyone accountable to their workload, Get Started has a separate Slack channel for remote workers. Every day, Adam encourages all remote workers, including himself, to share their intentions for the day.

At the end of the day, everyone shares what they have accomplished. The end of day check-in should reflect what each team member stated as their intentions in the morning. As Adam says, "Daily check-ins hold everyone accountable to their workload, keep the team focused, and encourage everyone to treat their work with integrity."

Find a productivity system that works

Adam is a strong believer in David Allen's Get Things Done (GTD) philosophy, and utilises ActiveInbox to implement this in his daily work life. By simplifying his routine and sticking to one easy-to-follow system for managing his work flow, Adam is able to keep track of his tasks and get more out of his day.

For work projects, Adam also uses Accelo, a piece of accounting and project management software. Accelo integrates with Xero, which helps to simplify and automate many time consuming business management processes. By streamlining everything into the one program, Adam can access important information no matter where he’s working from and save hours of time-eating phone conversations, check-ins and follow-ups.

Author Credits

Case Study by Action Words

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