How to Build a Successful and Dynamic Virtual Team
Creating a dynamic virtual team is not as easy at it looks. Virtual teams, although relatively new to the global business landscape, are already recognized as a boon to international organizations. A dynamic virtual team can minimize a company’s travel costs and hazards while allowing for creative innovation and decision making.
While virtual teams can be a great asset to a business, saving them a lot of time and resources, managers cannot expect a high-performing team to run smoothly by itself. Without careful structuring, support and attention to detail, it’s difficult to create a truly great virtual team. Read below for ways you can easily build a successful and dynamic virtual team that can get things done.
Communication is Key
The first step to building a smooth running virtual team is to focus on the communication. Since your team members are not meeting in person and don’t have the chance to bump into each other by the water cooler, frequent and quality communication is imperative to fostering a dynamic virtual team environment.
Things like email and instant messaging are great for sending files and writing out instructions, but details can often get lost and meaning construed with written communication. That’s why it’s a good idea to integrate other forms of communication into your team’s routine. Video conference calls are a great way to check in on your team on a daily or weekly basis. With a video call, it’s much easier to discern the tone and meaning of what’s being said, and you can easily clear up any confusion.
Whether you’re using email, instant messaging, conference calls or video chat, make sure that your virtual team is on the same page about important issues like deadlines, challenges, and updates. Clear communication leads to better team relationships and dynamics, which will improve the work of your virtual team.
Lay Out Your Expectations
When creating a dynamic virtual team, it’s important that you lay out the expectations you have for each member and the team as a whole. If you expect everyone to be available to respond to chats during a certain time period, make that clear to your team. Also make clear who is responsible for what in your virtual team, and deadlines that need to be met. Laying out consequences for not meeting the team’s expectations is also a great way to keep everybody on task. It’s a good idea to set up a weekly meeting that you expect everyone to attend so you can catch up on each other’s work and talk about any problems you’re having.
Get to Know Your Dynamic Virtual Team
Working in a dynamic virtual team is a little different than working in a traditional office. With its differences also comes challenges in terms of building strong team relationships. A lot of people think it’s hard to build relationships when you are not working in the same physical space, but with advancements in technology, it’s never been easier to get to know your virtual team members. All you have to do is put in the effort to build a relationship with the members of your team. Getting to know their strengths and their weaknesses can help your team improve overall and become more productive.
Try Using Collaboration Tools
Collaboration tools that include messaging, file sharing and assignment creating abilities are a great way to create a virtual space for your team to work. By having everything streamlined on one platform, you can minimize the chance of missed emails or phone calls left unreturned. Many of the collaboration tools available for virtual teams today include mobile applications so you can be in touch with your team wherever you go.
For more information on creating a dynamic virtual team, check out our other blog post “How Online Chats are the Virtual Glue That Connects Your Team.”