While remote and virtual teamwork is becoming more common today than it was, it’s still an area which a lot of leaders (and team members!) are not comfortable with. I explored many of the topics I am touching on here in my 2017 book – Effective Virtual Conversations – and I continue to write and support remote teams in these areas.
Here are five key areas you will want to pay attention to, in your work and conversations:
- Trust and Connection
- We don’t operate in a vacuum – relationships are important
- Understanding Context (everyone’s) and Big Picture
- Strong Team Culture
- Regular team practices
Let’s look at each one in turn:
#1 - Trust and Connection: Trust and connection are essential for exceptional virtual teamwork success. If we don’t have it, it’s likely that information does not flow, people don’t know each other or where to go, collaboration does not occur. Check out this past Teams #65 post to learn more.
#2 - We don’t operate in a vacuum – Relationships are important in the virtual space. Knowing our peers and who to reach out to, as well as having colleagues and connections across locations, is key. What learning could you do in the area of context or connection?
#3 - Understanding Context (everyone’s) and Big Picture – One of the challenges of virtual work is that we only see what’s on the screen. We usually don’t get a sense of the bigger context. What is the bigger picture we need to know about – priorities, gaps, roles, etc?
#4 - Strong Team Culture: Having a strong team culture helps us understand how we do things. It also helps us differentiate how we do things on this team, rather than other teams. Culture is manifested through sayings values, behaviors and practices. What’s important to clarify and/or communicate about your culture?
# 5- Regular Team Practices: Remote does not equal alone. Communication and regular team meetings are critical for performance, alignment and cohesion. What are the efficient ways you can keep each other informed?
As a virtual or remote team what’s important to note and focus on this quarter?
Leadership | Teamwork | Business Success
Author of multiple books including Effective Virtual Conversations (2017), PlanDoTrack (2019) and From One to Many: Best Practices for Team and Group Coaching (2013)
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