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Making Virtual Teams Work Critcal Sucess Factors

May 20, 2008

Communicating Communicate the business necessity of virtual teams. Communicate that virtual teamwork is respected. Discuss the value of diversity and of leveraging skills. Communicate the benefits and results of working virtually.
Establishing Expectations Define how virtual teams work and set clear procedures and goals. Set high standards for virtual team performance. Establish expectations of customers and other important stakeholders. Factor in startup costs and times.
Allocating Resources Allocate time and money for training for virtual team leaders and members. Allocate time and money for travel for team leaders for face-to-face meetings. Dedicate resources for technology.
Modeling Behaviors Align cross-functional and regional goals and objectives. Work together on management team across geographic and cultural boundaries. Solicit input from and display trust in team members. Show flexibility.

CSF‘s

Section One: Human Resource Policies
1. Career development systems address the needs of virtual team members.
2. Reward systems reward/recognize working across boundaries and working virtually.
3. Results are what is rewarded.
4. Nontraditional work arrangements, such as telecommuting, are actively supported.
Section Two: Training and Development
5. There is good access to technical training.
6. There is access to training in working across cultures.
7. There are methods available for continual and just-in-time learning, such as Web-based training.
8. There are mechanisms, such as lessons-learned databases, for sharing across boundaries.
Section Three: Standard Organizational Processes
9. There are standard and agreed-on technical team processes used throughout the organization and with partners.
10. There are standard and agreed-on “soft“ team processes used throughout the organization and with partners.
11. Adaptation of processes is encouraged when necessary.
12. The culture supports shared ways of doing business across teams and partners.
Section Four: Electronic Communication and Collaboration Technology
13. There are consistent standards for electronic communication and collaboration tools across the organization.
14. There are ample resources to buy and support state-of-the-art electronic communication and collaboration technology.
15. People from all functional areas have equal access to, and are skilled in using, electronic communication and collaboration technology.
16. People from all geographic areas have equal access to, and are skilled in using, electronic communication and collaboration technology.
Section Five: Organizational Culture
17. The culture can be described as “high trust.“
18. There is high trust between this organization and its suppliers and partners.
19. Teamwork and collaboration are the norm.
20. People from different cultures are valued here.
Section Six: Leadership
21. Leaders set high expectations for virtual team performance.
22. Leaders help gain the support of customers and other stakeholders.
23. Leaders allocate resources for the training and technology associated with virtual teams.
24. Leaders model behaviors such as working across boundaries and using technology effectively.
Section Seven: Competence
25. Team leaders are experienced in working in virtual environments.
26. Team members are experienced in working in virtual environments.
27. Team leaders are experienced in working across organizational and cultural boundaries.
28. Team members are experienced in working across organizational and cultural boundaries.
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