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6 Tips for Travel Team Get-Togethers If You Work Remotely, Part 1

If you’re an extrovert and love to travel, a week-long, expenses-paid business trip to a resort town is paradise. If you’re an introvert, “team bonding” and “hanging out all day with your coworkers” sounds like an intimidating situation.

There’s a reason you love remote work. You’re in the safety of your own world and most communication takes place via DMs through your fingertips. Going from rarely seeing your coworkers to seeing them all day?😲Let’s not think about it.

As you prepare for your first company get-together, consider these tips if you’re meeting your remote coworkers in person for the first time.

Tip 1: Preparing for a new routine

Onsite workers are accustomed to preparing to leave the house daily to get to their job. Monday to Friday, you prepare your outfit, pack your lunch, and prepare what you need for work. If you work from home, you won’t be accustomed to this. You don’t need to decide on an outfit or pack your lunch. You can conveniently roll out of bed and start work wearing your house clothes!

So before you venture off to a week-long work trip, think about all the things you use as part of a daily routine and make a list of what to pack. It’s your chance to dress up for work, so you may want to dust off some of your fancier clothes. Of course, check they still fit you and they don’t look out of style.

Also, pack the usual things you’ll need for your trip, such as sunscreen if you’re going somewhere warm, pack your toothbrush, and research some customs for where you’re going, such as tipping at your hotel.

Tip 2 Getting to know who you’ll meet

Introverts enjoy remote work for a reason. It can be overwhelming to go from virtually meets on a screen to seeing people in person. You’ll discover that people seem different in person. They may be taller or shorter than you expected. They won’t disappear after you press the exit button on your screen. You may be seeing them all day, for many days.

You want to avoid awkward situations, such as facing a teammate and not knowing who that person is. If possible, search through your company’s website, LinkedIn profiles, and Slack profile pictures to learn names and memorize faces. Learn what you can about their role at your company. These lifesaving bits of information are important for Tip 3, when you need icebreakers to start a conversation.

Tip 3 Prepare for unexpected social opportunities

A company get-together is less awkward if you’ve been working at an office. You now have a chance to have a longer conversation with the coworker you usually pass in the hall. You’ll less likely to have an awkward moment, such as meeting a coworker for the first time while you’re dressed in your pajamas. Yes, this situation can happen.

If your coworker’s flight arrives late and you’re already getting ready to retire for the night and you’re sharing a two-bedroom suite. Half asleep, your hair a mess, you introduce yourself to that teammate from another department you never had a reason to DM or speak to until now.

Extroverts can converse anywhere with anyone. Introverts who work remotely will have a harder time starting a conversation with coworkers they haven’t meet, or haven’t spoken to too often. Standing in front of you is a live person and you need to reply immediately. You can’t Slack your reply in the chat later when you’ve figured out what you want to say.

Here’s the secret: let the extroverts talk first and carry the conversation. Have a few conversation starters on hand in case you need them, such as “Have you visited (the place you’re at) before?” or “How was your flight in?” or “What are you thinking of ordering for dinner?”

Key Takeaways for Part 1

Spending several days with your coworkers can be a fun experience if you’re prepared. It’s a chance to meet them in person and leave the house for work. If you’re an introvert, seeing your coworkers all day could be overwhelming, but following some tips can turn this trip into a fun working vacation. For more tips, return for Part 2.

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