Leading A Virtual Team by Julian E. Dipp


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The Role of the Leader in a Virtual Team - Practical advices to succeed.

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Leading A Virtual Team by Julian E. Dipp

  1. 1. Leading a Virtual Team Julián E. Dipp
  2. 2. Topics <ul><li>What is a Virtual Team? </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership Principles </li></ul><ul><li>Communication and Coordination </li></ul><ul><li>Using Technology </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions </li></ul><ul><li>Questions </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>What is a Virtual Team? </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership Principles </li></ul><ul><li>Communication and Coordination </li></ul><ul><li>Using Technology </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions </li></ul><ul><li>Questions </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Aka geographically dispersed team </li></ul><ul><li>Is a group of individuals who work across time, space, and organizational boundaries with links strengthened by webs of communication technology. </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Key Characteristics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Complementary Skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Common purpose </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interdependent performance goals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Everyone is accountable for everyone’s work </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Benefits </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Skilled employees may be located anywhere in the world </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Workers can balance personal life with their work responsibilities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The workday is 24x7 instead of 8hs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New and more efficient technologies are promoted </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Problem solving possibilities/approaches are widened </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Organizations are more flexible and responsive to the marketplace </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>What is a Virtual Team? </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership Principles </li></ul><ul><li>Communication and Coordination </li></ul><ul><li>Using Technology </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions </li></ul><ul><li>Questions </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Leadership Definition Process of social influence* in which one person is able to enlist the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a common task. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>*Influence means that the relationship between people is not passive; it is reciprocal. </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><ul><li>The Seven Competences of an Effective Virtual Team Leader </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. 5 Do’s and Don’ts for Virtual Team Leaders <ul><li>DO be a leader, results catalyst, facilitator, barrier buster, business analyzer, coach and living example. </li></ul><ul><li>DO “purpose” the team well. </li></ul><ul><li>DO help everyone understand what each person does and needs from others. </li></ul><ul><li>DO get them the tools, time, and budget necessary to succeed. </li></ul><ul><li>DO install the systems, tools, protocols, and training for success. </li></ul><ul><li>DON’T be autocratic nor an abdicator. </li></ul><ul><li>DON’T allow poor team start-ups. </li></ul><ul><li>DON’T allow unclear roles and responsibilities to confuse people. </li></ul><ul><li>DON’T starve teams of resources </li></ul><ul><li>DON’T forget to create both social and technical infrastructure </li></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>Interacting with different cultures </li></ul><ul><li>The good leader must : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand that everyone has their own background, religion and habits. Flexibility or receptiveness is vital when dealing with people from different countries </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create a team atmosphere </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Take advantage of the various ways of thinking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create rules of engagement for the teammates and making sure everyone knows them </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>Hiring </li></ul><ul><ul><li>This is a crucial step when developing a Virtual Team. Applicants must: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be self-confident </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be Independent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be Proactive </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Actively seek for communication with their teammates and Team Leader </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Willingness to work with different cultures </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>What is a Virtual Team? </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership Principles </li></ul><ul><li>Communication and Coordination </li></ul><ul><li>Using Technology </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions </li></ul><ul><li>Questions </li></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>Coaching </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Good coaching clarifies goals and measures, and entails lots of communication and employee involvement. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Goals and measurements are especially important to leaders who must coach from a distance. Metrics are almost like a virtual manager that keeps everyone focused on the most important priorities. </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. <ul><ul><li>Shared accountability creates a feeling of real partnership. Good accountability systems create a feeling of clarity, purpose, and empowerment. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Coaching Tips </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Watch for clues that tell when to step in and coach </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Implement a peer feedback process </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Establish regular one-on-one coaching sessions with each employee </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use a structured improvement plan </li></ul></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Building Effective Teams The Leader should: <ul><ul><li>Create a team charter </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Set operating guidelines </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Clearly define team member roles and responsibilities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide clear processes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Teach how to give and receive feedback </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Teach good conflict-management skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Employ empathic listening skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop good decision-making processes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Integrate new team members effectively </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. <ul><li>Training from a Distance </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limit Web-based training sessions to two hours or less </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Where possible, use a combination of remote training and face-to-face sessions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Stay focused on results, not activities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Take into consideration the environment in which the individual(s) will be located </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Assess the needs of your team to assure that the appropriate topics and methods of delivery are used </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Try to simulate face-to-face training as much as possible </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Carefully select the method of Web-based training </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. <ul><li>Building Trust from a Distance </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Communicate openly and frequently </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To get trust, give trust </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be honest </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Establish strong business ethics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do what you say you will do, and make your actions visible </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Make sure that your interactions with the team are consistent and predictable </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. <ul><ul><li>From the outset, set the tone for future interaction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be accessible and responsive </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Maintain confidences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Watch your language </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create social time for the team </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. <ul><li>What is a Virtual Team? </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership Principles </li></ul><ul><li>Communication and Coordination </li></ul><ul><li>Using Technology </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions </li></ul><ul><li>Questions </li></ul>
  21. 21. Getting the Right Technology <ul><ul><li>The best solution isn’t always the most expensive </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider which is the best technology according to the service you will provide and how effectively it will fit into your system </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Determine what Software you’ll need before you determine what Hardware to use </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide reliable communication equipment systems (e.g. DSL, phone, pagers, web cam, etc.) </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. <ul><li>Virtual Meetings </li></ul><ul><ul><li>As people are geographically dispersed Virtual Meetings are important to enhance and promote communication. The leader must: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Have facilitator and communication skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Know how to make the best use of technology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Share documentation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider different time zones before setting up the meeting </li></ul></ul>
  23. 23. <ul><li>Using e-mail to manage a Virtual Team </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Have a “no-scrolling” rule </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Keep group lists up to date </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Check e-mail regularly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use the description line well </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use automatic replies when necessary </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ensure privacy and confidentiality are not violated </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Educate the team on appropriate and inappropriate use of e-mail </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be careful of putting emotional content into e-mail </li></ul></ul>
  24. 24. <ul><li>Using shared workspace </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use collaborative applications </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Train people how to work together in shared applications </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do regular backups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not use confusing file names </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Have protocols for the common space </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. <ul><li>What is a Virtual Team? </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership: Foundation Principles </li></ul><ul><li>Communication and Coordination </li></ul><ul><li>Using Technology </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusions </li></ul><ul><li>Questions </li></ul>
  26. 26. <ul><ul><li>Global business challenge is coordinating people from a distance. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New management strategies and techniques are needed. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>While conventional leaders can watch what their team is doing, a virtual Team Leader must rely on his people. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A Virtual Leader must master technology in order to use it for the benefit of his team. </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. <ul><ul><li>Technology alone is insufficient. Leaders now need to also master interpersonal relationships which is even harder from a distance. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>There is no cookbook for leading people in remote locations. This concept is challenging traditional management. </li></ul></ul>
  28. 28. Questions?