Habits are good; if they’re good habits. Let’s just say that upfront. I’m not talking about bad habits – like biting your nails, or twisting your hair, or overeating. No, I’m talking about habits that will make you successful in your business. And, you can help others develop good habits too. Tim Young of Picking Your Brain gives you “Tips for Breaking Bad Habits and Developing Good Habits”. Like the habits I’m going to talk about…creating good habits takes time and determination. The three habits we’ll discuss are: meeting often, meeting in person, and building relationships.
One thing all successful Virtual Teams do is to meet often. By meeting often, you develop strong bonds that will get you get through the occasional tense moments of disagreement. And “meeting often” can include meeting by teleconferencing or web conferencing with MeetingKing or Skyping. But, don’t just meet to meet. Have a purpose and an agenda, with new tasks assigned, and completed tasks discussed. And, share something that will benefit the whole team, whether it’s good news, or a new technology, or just something fun. Humor, when it’s used wisely can forge a bond, as long as everyone is laughing with you, not at you!
And, even though you may have a remote team, it’s always a great idea, and I think, a necessary idea, to occasionally bring your team together face-to-face as well. When people have a chance to see each other in person, and get to know each other, there are fewer opportunities for misunderstandings. People learn about each other and their intentions behind their words. Therefore, when they are communicating by email or Skype, they are less like to read “Tone!” in the information.
In that same vein of building relationships among your team members, consider highlighting one Team Member per meeting. It doesn’t have to be their life story, but maybe just the highlights. Talk about their background, their skills, and one thing “you would be surprised” to know about them. By sharing something about each member of the Team, this will increase cordial interactions and lead to shared knowledge. Plus, if you have Team members who back each other up, starting the dialogue before there’s an emergency, will help their productivity as well. They’ll be speaking the same language, understanding each other’s skills and limitations and expectations. Of course, sharing tasks will be much easier if you’ve also developed a Manual with task guidelines so one person can just pick at the point the other Team Member left off. This is critical when little notice is given, like in an emergency.
Denise Brown has some great tips on “How to Build Positive Relationships Among Team Members”. She also recommends that Team Members get together, but not just for meetings. Fun outings, outside of the office, also build on positive interactions.
So, what are you doing to ensure successful your Virtual Team? Are you meeting often, meeting in person and building relationships within your Virtual Team? Share your ideas here!
References for this article include:
Young, Tim. “Tips for Breaking Bad Habits and Developing Good Habits” http://www.pickyourbrain.com, (July 06, 2012)
Brown, Denise, Demand Media. “How to Build Positive Relationships Among Team Members”, http://smallbusiness.chron.com/build-positive-relationships-among-team-members-10129.html, (July 07, 2012)
–Joy Bolluyt, Owner, President and Lead Consultant of Manageta. “Command Your Vision … Experience the Power of a Team!”
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Joy A. Bolluyt © Copyright 2012. WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include: Joy Bolluyt, Owner, President and Lead Consultant, Manageta, is an online business consultant, certified online business manager and virtual teaming expert. She works with highly motivated consultants, business owners, and entrepreneurs that want to GROW their business and take back their LIFE! To schedule a complimentary consult, go to https://my.timedriver.com/L4B6G and visit Blog: http://manageta.com