Make Your Virtual Team Shimmer!
If you want your Team Project to shimmer then don’t be a bystander.
Since you don’t have that face to face interaction on a virtual team, you need to use your words. When you make a request “I need this by…”, then add a (why) or (because), It doesn’t matter what or how ridiculous the ‘why’ is, it just seems when you use it, it instills self-motivation in your team members.
Assign tasks and responsibilities to specific members
When you assign tasks to your virtual team make sure to make things clearly understood. Who is going to be in charge of that particular task or project and who else is on their team. When is the deadline and what are the steps needed to be completed. With programs like Asana each task is checked off as it’s done and there’s plenty of room for everyone to comment along the way.
Document your meetings
Questions and instructions should always be in writing. Live conversations on the phone, Facetime, Skype or Google Hangouts are important, but then follow up and summarize the conversation in an email. Instruct team members to do the same. Once you get off the phone you may forget one or two important facts or may have miss heard the correct pronunciation of words and numbers.
Take time, to learn to use some of the new project management apps
Here are two of my favorites. I’m not affiliated with them. I just like them and use them.
Asana (love this one) Nice design and the free version works well for task management & team collaboration. The flow and search functions make this one worth learning. View and update tasks and subtasks. Say goodbye to multiple email, reply to all, stacks. The free version has very few limitations and integrates nicely with Slack and other apps. For teams over 15 members there are other levels of paid accounts. You can read the official Asana Guide or watch a detailed video Introduction to Asana by Matt Gibson. You could practice by using one of your current projects like a blog post and you are the only team member. In fact, the email reminders might stop you from procrastinating.
Slack is more like an instant messaging platform than a team management tool. You can use Slack lite for free, but a Standard Slack account is still quite affordable. There is a bit of a learning curve in the beginning that turns some people off. These days, time is of the essence, people want instant ‘on’ when it comes to software tools. It does, however, integrate nicely with other services, like Google Hangouts for video, Trello, Asana and a lot more. Steve Dotto has a great tutorial video and a mini course.
Working with virtual teams is gaining in popularity with big and small business. As long as the project manager knows exactly what they want and gives clear and concise instructions, then the entire team will feel the sense of accomplishment as each task gets ticked off the to-do-list.
Virtual Assistants make excellent team members. We are professional VA’s and are already up-to-date on the latest and greatest software programs of the day. VA’s can get your project up and running, organize the team and schedule the tasks. If you want any advice on your current or future projects please drop me a line at email@example.com .
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