Set expectations about behavior and
performance and document them.
Define each member’s responsibilities,
such as e-mail response time, and share the
information with all team members. |
Encourage and provide feedback on all
team activities to e-staffers the same as you
would with workers in the office.
Use tried and true project management
disciplines to ensure the clarity of your
messages to both off- and on-site staff:
Make sure all communications define
expected actions, responsibilities and time lines.
Track to-do items with tickler files
and follow up as necessary.
Provide more formal communications than
in traditional same-time/same-place teams.
Circulate agendas and minutes for all
Because informal information doesn’t
usually make the rounds on virtual teams, allow
time for light conversation and personal tidbits
that aren’t included on the formal teleconference
Put someone in charge of documenting
explicit and tacit knowledge when
communicating among team members and make it
easily accessible. Explicit
knowledge includes facts, policies and procedures.
Tacit knowledge is information understood without
being openly expressed, such as behaviors (“Is it
OK to wait until 10 a.m. to read my e-mails?”) and
logistics (“When I visit your office, where should
Match activities with performance
evaluation factors, so what gets done gets
measured. Reward good
performance with a bonus, day off, dinner on the
company, promotion or raise.
Capture information on all projects and
office happenings from e-mails, in-house memos
and press releases and share them with remote
team members, and archive e-communications in
a shared database for new hires.
Encourage team members to build
face-to-face relationships whenever they are
physically in the office.
Consider training teleworkers as
potential team leaders to communicate with and
coordinate the group in your absence.
As a team, determine how to address and
resolve conflict, whether it involves a
face-to-face confrontation or one that occurs