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Virtual collaboration: 5 Myths, 5 Tips, and 5 Things to Do Tomorrow


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Training session on virtual collaboration delivered to Hewlett Packard EMEA Finance on 17th May 2010. Presented on-site at Sant Cugat, Spain, and broadcast EMEA-wide.

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Virtual collaboration: 5 Myths, 5 Tips, and 5 Things to Do Tomorrow

  1. 1. Virtual Collaboration: 5 Myths, 5 Tips, and 5 Things to do Tomorrow Hewlett Packard EMEA Finance Development & Training Day, Sant Cugat, Spain & EMEA-wide dial-in 17th May, 2010 Dr. Steven MacGregor (
  2. 2. Presenting the magic formula for virtual collaboration success: Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  3. 3. Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  4. 4. +
  5. 5. Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  6. 6. But, from time to time, there’s a fly in the ointment.. Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  7. 7. Eyjafjallajökull!*@!# Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  8. 8. But seriously, with the right approach and management, Virtual Collaboration is the optimum solution. Lets start by dispelling some of the myths around virtual work.. Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  9. 9. 5 Myths
  10. 10. Myth # 1 Face to face is always better Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  11. 11. Myth # 2 Virtual collaboration is not the norm Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  12. 12. Myth # 3 Nothing good ever comes out of virtual work Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  13. 13. Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  14. 14. Myth # 4 If only we had the right technology!! Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  15. 15. Myth # 5 You must meet face-to-face in order to see eye-to-eye Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  16. 16. So, in sum, we can say that virtual work is the de-facto mode of collaboration that produces the bulk of work in today’s world, and sometimes, spectacular results. Granted, it’s not easy!! Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  17. 17. 5Tips
  18. 18. Tip # 1 Above all, it’s about sharing Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  19. 19. Tip # 2 Take the necessary time to plan and think off-line Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  20. 20. Thinking about a virtual collaboration protocol Some key considerations What is the vision, purpose, and objectives? What are the roles and responsibilities of colleagues? What are the ‘rules of the game’? How are decisions taken? How should conflicts be resolved? When and how are resources to be supplied? Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  21. 21. Time and space matrix TIME same different same f2f post-it SPACE different phone, skype e-mail Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  22. 22. Tip # 3 Do not multi-task Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  23. 23. Tip # 4 Learn to live with lower awareness Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  24. 24. Tip # 5 Don’t neglect the physical when it comes to the virtual Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  25. 25. We were born to move Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  26. 26. Don’t forget to breathe! Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  27. 27. 5 things to do tomorrow
  28. 28. Action # 1 Find out something new about one of colleagues Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  29. 29. Action # 2 Write down (and share) your norms for using each communication mode Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  30. 30. Email! 1.  Answer messages within a 12 hour period.! 2.  Use the subject line as the message! 3.  Prioritize mail by coding top of message with either “Requires action” or “For your information (FYI)”! 4.  Send short, straightforward messages (tweets!)! Audio conference! 1.  Send out agenda in advance: name + contact information of person calling meeting, meeting purpose, start time and expected length, names of attendees, etc.! 2.  Limit participation to no more than eight people,! 3.  Be punctual! 4.  Preface all comments with introduction, own name! 5.  Avoid interrupting others! Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  31. 31. Action # 3 Create your own ‘Facemap’
  32. 32. Action # 4 Construct a common ground platform Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  33. 33. Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  34. 34. Action # 5 Share this presentation with your colleagues Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  35. 35. 1 And finally, thing you must remember
  36. 36. It’s not about technology, it’s about people: A)  Build on swift trust, B) Establish norms, C) Nurture common ground. Dr. S. P. MacGregor
  37. 37. MSI logo Virtual Collaboration: 5 Myths, 5 Tips, and 5 Things to do Tomorrow Thanks + Good Luck! Dr. Steven MacGregor (