EXECUTIVE FORUM

 

The Discipline of Virtual Teams

BY JON R. KATZENBACH AND DOUGLAS K. SMITH

“I have discovered another impact of the virtual team,” exclaimed a project coordinator of the “Gaia Project” (a disguised name). “It keeps me up all hours of the day and night!” In just over a year, the roughly three dozen people associated with the Gaia Project collaborated to set a time-to-market record for designing a new subsystem demanded by main players in the evolving global automotive markets. The effort spanned more than a dozen time zones, half a dozen languages, and four continents. Most, but not all, came from the same company, and there were a score or more specific functional, managerial, or other specialties. Different cultures, countries, ...

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