5 ingredients to make your virtual teams work

Posted on: Aug 25, 2017 by Gabriel Berti

Harvard Business School teams expert Amy Edmondson explains in the book Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World, written by Stanley A. McChrystal, Chris Fussell and Tantum Collins that, “Great teams consist of individuals who have learned to trust each other. Over time, they have discovered each other’s strengths and weaknesses, enabling them to play as a coordinated whole."

Thus, meaning that trust is the key ingredient for a great team formation. The people known as the teams` components, need to trust each other to ensure a group can work as a team.

In a recent survey, done by colleagues in different areas of work, it was possible to identify that trust is related with the 5 main ingredients listed below:

1. Transparency; 2. Communication; 3. Credibility; 4. Collaboration; 5. Loyalty.

The question now arises: How to cultivate these ingredients in a Digital Environment?

Let’s explore: 1. Transparency: Be honest. Look people in the eyes and read their body language. This is very important for an effective transparent communication. You always need to go straight to the point with somebody. Make use of video conversation in cases where it is not possible to be physically together;

2. Communications: When it needs to be fast, make use of phones. If you need it to be detailed, write it down, share your desktop and show what needs to be presented or understood. But, if your communication needs to be continuous, use all of the existing communication channels. The most important step in communication however, is to listen. Listening in the digital world means read, see, look and hear. So, it's possible to listen in more ways than one.

3. Credibility: Compromise yourself where you can, state your real possibilities and make continuous updates about the subject or theme where you compromised yourself. Set and accomplish targets, keep your communication fluid and organized. It is important to follow-up even when the news is not good;

4. Collaboration: Simplify the life of the people in need. Be present, thus meaning, you need to be available for answers and support on a daily basis as your colleagues faces the demand of their day-to-day activities. It does not matter what form of communication you use, where you are or what time it is, always keep the communication door open for your mates;

5. Loyalty: Be loyal to people, protect them even in complex situations, try to understand their point of view before creating your own opinion or sentencing them. Be transparent with the people. If someone did something wrong, guide them, but never leave them alone.

So how is this piece related to the digital environment? Well, that is easy, in today’s world there exists many tools that can help you with the first 4 qualities, for example, the Unify Circuit, that has Voice, Video, Instant Messaging, File Repository, Intelligent Search and even more technologies which can help you with the cultivation of trust within a team. But, loyalty, well, it is up to you! By Gabriel Adinolfi Berti, Head of Technical Experts Latam at Unify.

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About Gabriel Berti

Head of Technical Experts Latam at Unify