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Managing remote teams.


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While there are plenty of reasons to ‘be there in person’, having a local team also comes with costs and limitations. Sometimes, the right skills are simply not available in the local community. In other cases, a trusted team member moves away, temporarily or permanently, or changes his or her work hours. It is often a lot easier to continue working with the person remotely, than to take on a significant risk of finding a replacement that will be in the team room, in person, during regular hours. With the right approach, it is possible to have a very successful team, that allows for flexibility over time and distance.

In this talk, we will discuss the issues and solutions for managing a long-distance team, the difficulties of management over the long distance, the technologies and the gadgets that are designed to be helpful, but are not always.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Managing remote teams.

  1. 1. Managing Remote Team Jane Prusakova
  2. 2. Remote: lack of perception
  3. 3. What makes for a
  4. 4. Another floor or building
  5. 5. Working from the beach for an afternoon
  6. 6. Telecommuting on a regular basis
  7. 7. Offshoring work
  8. 8. Communicate via technology
  9. 9. … or very expensive technology
  10. 10. What works locally • Rich communication • Tone of voice • Facial expressions and body language • Immediate response • Shared environment • Public space • Dress code and other social clues
  11. 11. Remote challenges • “Out of site, out of mind” • How can I trust someone I have never met? • Communication • Conversation 110 – 150 words/min • Lecturing 150 – 160 words/min • Reading 200 – 250 words/min • Phone comprehension requires slowing down
  12. 12. Face-2-face is always better than remote* • Minimize remote-ness • Move people to a closer office • Ask telecommuting employees to visit the office • Invest in travel for far-flung team members * Remote teams can be awesome, too
  13. 13. Becoming aware • what works • what is important • little and not-so-little things • your instincts are likely wrong
  14. 14. Communication: being heard
  15. 15. Communication: EQ
  16. 16. Communication: listening • Comprehension & retainment less than 50% • Need to work harder for remote communication
  17. 17. Keep remote folks in mind • Smaller teams • Conscious effort to remember entire team • Visual reminders • Names on the board • Pictures
  18. 18. Watch out for
  19. 19. Get to know remote team members
  20. 20. Share your personality
  21. 21. Simplify communication • Continuously open channels • Text, audio, video • Temporary targeted channels • Meeting support • Shared visuals
  22. 22. Build a two-way street • Direct communication • Allow for subtleties • Be forgiving
  23. 23. Learn to address distributed audience • Share focus • Talk to the in-room and remote participants • Check up on technology frequently • Phone lines drop and software crashes • Stop if remote folks can not participate • Just like you would if there was fire alarm in the building
  24. 24. Bring the team together • Decide on office soundtrack • Design a music stream as a team • Create a team picture • Use Photoshop if you have to • Long-distance team lunch • Pick a food that everyone will enjoy – and order it for all
  25. 25. Check-in frequently
  26. 26. Overcoming remote-ness • Be aware of long-distance effects • Build and maintain human connections • Learn to use communication technologies
  27. 27. Managing Remote Team Jane Prusakova