There are many ways that workplaces are going green, and one of the biggest is telecommuting. From 1980 – 2009, the percentage of employees working from home has grown 86%. Along with this remote work rise, more and more virtual teams are being born.
When I first heard of virtual teams, I wondered how anyone could manage employees effectively when they’re not in the same office. How do people begin work on time when their boss is remote? Would they leave early? Would they (gasp!) check Facebook with the absence of a boss nearby?
As trivial as it seems now, before the rise of telecommuting trends, I had all these questions. And then about four years ago, I became part of this growing trend. Although I’m on a very small team of two (counting myself), we still consider ourselves a team. I work from my home in South Carolina and my direct report works in Pennsylvania – sometimes in the office and sometimes from home. I really don’t pay much attention to where she is physically because with PGi‚Äôs online meetings technology, it doesn‚Äôt matter. Instead of meeting in person, we just join each other‚Äôs iMeet room. I‚Äôve even set up my iMeet room to notify me via text and email when someone enters and I‚Äôm not there ‚Äì kind of like a knock on the door. She can even drop off files for me in my room!
¬†We only see each other two or three times a year when we attend a conference or meet in one of PGi’s global support centers. I‚Äôve never felt like I’m not near her, because I ‚Äúsee‚Äù her in iMeet. And those attendance questions that used to be a big deal? Like PGi‚Äôs Digital Nomad has shown, we can work anywhere using iMeet and GlobalMeet.
Remote managers report that their top two challenges for virtual teaming are trust and communications.¬†If you‚Äôre part of a virtual team, find out how iMeet and GlobalMeet can dissolve geographic barriers for an experience that feels like your remote employee is sitting in the cube next to you.
¬†*Sources: Forresters, Brandman University, US Census, World at Work, Telework Research Network, Training/AMA/14CP, Achieve Global