4 Simple Ways to Manage Global Virtual Teams

4 Simple Ways to Manage Global Virtual Teams

Today’s workplace has expanded beyond the confined, brick and mortar buildings to the entire world. Time and geographical barriers no longer pose problems in maintaining a global team of employees for businesses.

With uncompromising speed, security and access, businesses can operate from anywhere, thus bringing diversity into the equation. In the globally networked world of businesses, it has become increasingly common to have distributed teams.

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Such a flexible workplace supports the working of employees from different locations. Not only does it support the rapidly evolving landscape of businesses but it is also highly beneficial from a financial standpoint.

That being said, managing a globally distributed team can be quite the challenge. How do you manage a team an entire time zone away? Let’s take a look at a few ways that can make this task easy.

Tips for Managing Global Virtual Teams

Talent Acquisition

One of the major factors that restricted hiring the best talent for a company was geographical proximity. With remote workers in the radar of businesses, this is no longer a problem. The first step is to attract globally distributed candidates for the jobs. Creative hiring strategies have surfaced to make this process easy and distinctive.

Kuty Shalev, CEO and founder of a remote-based software development company pointed out, “To attract top remote talent, start by rethinking your approach to job descriptions. I actually recommend making your job descriptions less descriptive. Instead, focus on using fewer words and incorporating more intrigue.”

Stretching out the talent acquisition process to accommodate the employees’ requirements can help you achieve this.

Make the Most of Technology

To manage your globally distributed team efficiently, you will need to go all online. The money you save from investing in offices can be utilized to make use of the best technology to make collaboration with remote teams seamless.

Being tech-savvy is no longer an option or an added skill for today’s workforce — it is a necessity. In fact, today’s generation of employees does not switch off. With the advent of technology, employees can stay connected always regardless of the location or the time.

The BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) trend coupled with the easy accessibility of the Internet through WiFi facilities is highly beneficial to manage a team of remote workers. This trend has gained ground recently with 74 percent of the organizations already using this or in the process of adopting it.

Apart from that, there are numerous communication channels like video-conferencing etc. that can be used to interact with a remote team.

Global Team Building

Global team building is not much of a problem with the right tools and the right attitude in place. It is important to note that, with remote employees, the dynamics of the meetings are more social and the atmosphere is more relaxed. Conference calls and chat rooms can turn out to be quite effective in conducting these meetings. Real-time web conferencing is a boon in such situations.

  • One way to initiate a conversation and spark rapport is to start by asking about the weather condition or their culture or the latest news in their countries and so on.
  • A visual display showing each participant on the conference call along with their names and locations is an effective team building method. This allows everyone to see and get to know each other on their teams. This way, they would feel recognized.

It is important to gain the trust of your employees. In such situations, honesty and flexibility along with an interest to listen to and understand your employees’ doubts and queries matter considerably. Effective communication is key. That being said, you can also meet up with your team to build unison.

Keep Everything Documented

Supporting a remote staff may result in loss of valuable information unless everything is documented thoroughly.

It is advisable to make it an everyday routine to keep the records of your employees’ daily activities. Submission of detailed work reports will help in keeping you as well as the team informed about the progress of work while keeping the company fully operational throughout the day at all locations.

While having a worldwide network may have its fair share of challenges, it has many rewards. With these tips and a proper maintenance plan, you can easily manage a globally distributed team.

Global Photo via Shutterstock

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Steven Scheck Steven Scheck is the Principal of Inspire WiFi, the nationwide leader of WiFi networks for the multifamily, hospitality and healthcare industries. He is also very involved in philanthropic causes in Miami and nationally.

2 Reactions
  1. I agree, that everything must be documented. This tip is suitable for any size of business. Not only to save information, but to have everyday (week, month, year) picture how good is your business at this stage.

  2. By following above mentioned guidelines and using tools like webex, R-HUB web conferencing servers etc. one can effectively manage remote teams.

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