The #1 Tool For Remote Team Collaboration
In my latest post I discussed one part of the presentation I gave a week ago for a group of senior HR managers. I shared my experience using the one page strategic plan for leading distributed teams.
The second topic I discussed was how to create a real team spirit, how to create bonding and engagement in remote team collaboration. Many people that work remotely, away from the head office of an organisation, are far away from the ‘action’, from the ‘coffee talk’. There’s also less time to discuss how to collaborate and communicate. Most teams ‘just get started’, doing the work they do in the way they have always done it. But with the complicating factor of remote work, especially if part of the team is in another time zone and from another culture, it requires some more thought.
We have developed a canvas to structure the thinking about the remote team collaboration. I found in the workshop that some elements don’t apply to just any project or team. We use it for software development teams. So for your situation, you may want to replace some of the blocks from the canvas with elements that matter in your context.
The main benefit of this canvas is to open the discussion. In the session, we for example found, that by discussing ‘team spirit’, some team members realized they never spoke about this. It helps if each team member explains what ‘team spirit’ means for him personally. This way, you create mutual understanding and bonding. Teams that connect on an emotional level, work better together.
Another point that came up is what process meant. In the context of a software development project, it means the steps a company takes to get a client request from A to Z. What steps are taken? What roles do we have to make this happen (this is then described in the block ‘responsibilities’).
After going through all these blocks one by one, you’ve covered all topics that matter for global team collaboration. This plan can then be put on a (virtual) wall so everyone in the team has a ‘compass’.
If you have any questions about the canvas, feel free to send me an email
I like your agile approach to virtual team collaboration – “So for your situation, you may want to replace some of the blocks from the canvas with elements that matter in your context.”
I believe that the sklils and mentality needed by agile tech development, are directly applicable to global/virtual teams. The way tech is being developed also can educate us how to actually collaborate on that tech platform – in a human way. Hence the inspiration for my work at Human Side of Tech.
thanks for your comment! I agree that agile changes people’s mindset and a company’s culture in a direction favorable to virtual collaboration. If we empower people and teams and create strong accountability and measurable outcomes, anyone can work from anywhere. Keep up the good work on the human side of things :)