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Move by Patty Azzarello

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Chapter 14Virtual and Remote TeamsOptimizing Performance and Results from Afar

What Everyone Is Thinking

Where is everybody? Can anybody see me?

It's very rare today that teams get to work together in the same building. And this causes worry for everyone involved. Managers are worried about productivity. Remote individuals are worried about how to build their reputations and credibility from afar. Everyone is worried about having enough influence, or being marginalized if they are not present at headquarters. People become slaves to their messaging platforms because they are afraid that someone will notice if they are not responsive for 10 seconds. Time zones and native language differences make regular, high-quality communication awkward and difficult.

There are three important ideas I would like to address for creating success (and reducing stress) with virtual and remote teams:

  1. Optimizing your work-from-home policies
  2. Managing and motivating a geographically dispersed team
  3. Advising the remote individual

Optimizing Your Work-from-Home Policy

Many companies provide work-from-home options. Employees love it. But many managers struggle with it. They ask me about this all the time: “Should we allow it? Is it a good thing for business? Is it a bad thing for business? How do you optimize motivation and productivity?”

To me, there is a very simple way of looking at this that removes a lot of the questions and angst about this:

Individuals can be more productive working at home, ...

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