Virtual Leadership 2

Building and leading a powerful virtual team

Members of virtual teams often find it hard to develop a sense of solidarity and common pur-pose. In many cases, they have little or no personal contact and may not even know each other. Virtual teams generally don’t get the chance to participate in standard team development activ-ities, such as bringing the whole group together to clarify goals, processes and roles. In Module 2, we focus on the task of building and leading a virtual team. Using a series of real-world use cases, we illustrate the best approaches to take to achieve success in virtual settings.

Remote Training, 2.5 hours, 4-10 participants

Learning goals for participants:

  • To learn how to use virtual communication tools to turn a group of people working in different locations into a high-performing team.
  • To understand the particular role played by a manager in virtual environments.
  • To name three key leadership tasks in virtual teams and learn possible ways of putting them into practice:
    1. Design the process: Set clear goals, agree on good rules for communication, encourage participative planning, put in place tools for managing and monitoring the process.
    2. Self-leadership: Understand the basics of independent and collaborative work, define competencies and responsibilities, actively support every participant’s ability to organise their own work.
    3. Build the team: Create ways to nurture informal relationships to increase the level of trust, hold a kick-off event, provide opportunities for small talk and socialising, celebrate success.
  • To learn how to provide mutual support to establish trust and ensure efficient commu-nication.
  • To pick up methods of making virtual meetings appealing and interesting for everyone involved.
  • To understand the conflicts and pitfalls that may occur in virtual collaboration and ap-preciate how these can be solved early on.

Content:

  • Designing the “forming” phase of a team in a virtual setting – promoting trust in targeted contexts
  • Preparing online meetings so that they achieve the desired results – getting team members involved
  • Providing examples of how to create online meetings that are interactive and focused on results
  • Finding constructive ways to manage “storming” phases – dealing with tricky topics and conflicts online
  • Carrying out “norming” in virtual settings – remotely establishing targeted rules and rituals
  • Actively supporting the “performing” phase: promoting the team’s ability to take the initiative, making sure results are achieved, applying techniques to ensure remote agreements are regarded as binding
  • Optional: How to use Skype to facilitate online meetings (whiteboard, chat, pooling, etc.)

Training methods:

  • Presentation of brief theoretical overview and model to aid reflection
  • Examples of “scripts” that can be used for meetings and other events
  • Working through typical use cases to illustrate key concepts
  • Swapping stories of people’s own day-to-day experiences with virtual leadership
  • Drawing up checklists for successful project management in virtual settings

We will be happy to tailor this training concept to your individual needs.