LEADING IN A VIRTUAL WORLD-LEADERS WILL REQUIRE “TELEPRESENCE”
Guest Blog by Anne Bruce – Author, International Professional Speaker and Workshop Leader
Telepresence products are being developed by companies like Cisco, HP, Apple, Mircrosoft,and others. The race is on!
Large high-definition screens now line office walls of highly technologically savvy companies worldwide, where cameras follow you when you enter the room and leave the room, just like the eyes of people in a meeting do.
Everyone is connected in “real time.” There is no delay in transmission. This is what you call the united virtual workplace of the future, where people actually feel like someone in a far-flung location, like Dubai or Singapore, is sitting right across the table from them.
Let’s Get Back to the Future—Here and Now
Your leaders will be looking to you for tools and strategies when it comes to training and supporting modern mobile work teams.
At the start of 2012, it is estimated that there will be more than one billion mobile workers worldwide. It’s your job to help your leaders cope with this reality. Leading in a virtual workplace brings advantages as well as challenges, and often requires a unique skill set.
Virtual Leaders Are Tied to Technology
There are times when virtual leaders face challenges unlike those in a conventional work setting. Virtual leaders are tied to their mobile technology, keyboards, and databases, while more traditional leaders are often face-to-face with difficult people and
difficult situations on site.
A lot comes down to trust and having your presence felt no matter where you are, or how you work. This is what ultimately makes a successful virtual leadership team.
Seven Highly Effective Habits for Managing a Virtual Team
Managing virtual teams brings unique challenges, but with these tips it should be a smoother ride:
1. Set expectations.
2. Communicate clearly and often.
3. Be available, and expect availability.
4. Set goals.
5. Find out what drives your team members.
6. Build trust. If you promise to deliver something, do it. Expect the same trust in return.
7. Use the world clock on your computer. Be considerate of other people’s time zones.
Wrapping It Up
Encourage your leaders to be “boundary-less” thinkers and to keep looking for opportunities to be flexible and to learn what motivates each individual, whether that person is in
Malaysia or Maine.
This is an edited excerpt from Anne’s latest book – Leaders Start to Finish. To purchase the book, visit ASTD.org. Use promotional code "ANNE10" to receive a 10% discount upon checkout!