The world has become a global village in terms of the business environment. This has brought about the emergence of a virtual team. Organizations have started to outsource to human resources; hence these teams have become part and parcel of the organization structure. Long are the days when all the employees had to be in set up in one physical location, offices while they are working. It has, however, become the challenge in getting work done by these virtual teams.
Managing a virtual team is a very complex task. This has been made so by the differences in languages, diverse cultures, working styles as well as crossing the world since they are located in different geographical locations. These factors have been attributed to making these teams more complicated and complex. They have lead organizations to come up with a way that helps them work out. Otherwise, virtual teams may become dysfunctional.
There are several principles that organizations have come up with in making virtual teams work. Good virtual team form a vital asset to the organization as they meet their objectives, this article will look at some o the feature and principles for managing virtual teams.
- Right Team
Getting Good virtual teams must have to start with good employees. These people ought to have good communication skills, self-starters’ emotional intelligence. They are able to work independently, as they should be aware of cultural differences and sensitivity. An effective virtual team offer a good approach to working efficiently and flexible. This is because it cuts down the operation cost of the business in terms of travel and salaries
Managing good virtual teams are limited to size. Virtual teams of less than ten employees are ideal for managing. This makes sure that everyone’s interests are considered as each can air their views during the meeting. It is easier to manage small groups than in large groups.
- Reward system
This is also known as Meritocracy. It is a process of recognizing and rewarding employees based on their knowledge and skills. This stimulates the virtual team to work harder and efficiently. It is good to make sure you set up efficient reward systems as it keeps team motivated. This allows competition among the team members as they take more responsibility for their tasks.
Despite the working location of the virtual team in the globe, it is good at times that they should come together on one physical location, at least at the central place or there most preferred location. If this isn’t possible, they can do it through video conference or any other visual media such as zoom.
There are those vital times that they require to meet, especially at the beginning of projects, to lay down the role for each team member. The other time is when the manager is introducing new members to the rest of the virtual team members. This principle helps this team to work in harmony as each member feels associated with the organization.
- Define work systems.
People have different ways of doing their tasks. Organizations, therefore, have to set certain standards that the virtual team has to follow in order to achieve the organization’s goals and objectives. In so doing them can able o define certain specific work system that is followed as well taking care of any obstacles that are met and protocols that are followed. These systems have to maximize the effectiveness of these virtual teams to complete tasks taken. Wearing Professional attire and a good working environment should be are part of the organization, corporate culture.
- Use of Technology
Virtual teams have to understand the importance of the use of technology. Effective use of technology in video conferencing, conference calls, and the use of other techniques that offer the team a platform for communication enhances team productivity. It is vital to remember that communication tools should be effective; for instance, team members should be prompt to pick calls so as to answer any queries that may arise. This is many ways cheaper than setting up conference calls or webinars. The complicated technology approach also works effectively and works well. It can be used in a virtual team meeting other than the task itself.
- Flexible work hours
Virtual teams, in most cases, maybe working from home. Therefore flexibility with their work hours is very important. It good to allow a certain degree of flexibility in managing virtual teams; otherwise, things may become erratic and difficult to solve any issue that may arise. Collaboration is vital for the team since they ought to work at the same time and able to chat effectively.
- Leadership Skills
Leading virtual teams attracts leaders to have certain skills. These skills ought to be the same as those used in a locally located team. Good leadership skills are vital features for every virtual team’s success in obtains organizations’ goals and objectives. Such skills include respect, empathy, and attitude, among others.
- Clear Deliverables
This helps to offer detailed descriptions of the task and projects to be taken. The instruction must be precise and clear o that virtual team members can understand each and every rule. This reduces misunderstanding while executing their task.
- Work Hours Overlap
Since virtual teams work remotely and in different time zones, it is recommended to have a virtual team simultaneously. Being online at the same time, make this teamwork in harmony and able to compete for the task. Regardless of the different time zones, it good teams to work at least three to four hours online, as this saves lots of time, especially when solving a problem.
- Project Management Tools
Setting up Project management tools is an ideal principle that keeps track of project deadlines. This helps the virtual team to remind them time-lapse and alert them of the remaining time for the project. In this way, you can set the time required for the project. It can be daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly.
These tools provide an overview of what required to be done at a certain time, which team and when to be done. This helps in setting up standards as this virtual teamwork and puts them in the right mindset as well as being efficient and effective in their work.