Virtual team building is crucial in our current environment. Organizations have switched from in-person environments to remote and online environments placing employees and teams in challenging settings. Therefore the switch can result in confusion, lack of productivity, frustration, feelings of isolation and will ultimately reflect poor performance and miscommunication.
One of the manager’s responsibilities is to motivate and lead their team resulting in success. Additionally, they must recognize the challenges and tackle them early on. Virtual team building plays a concrete role with improving communication, problem-solving, collaboration, and overall motivation.
Traditionally, team building involves more direct contact. The manager must approach the virtual team in the way that will encourage visual communication such as video chats and meetings. The outcomes must emphasize the importance of member participation and problem-solving.
Factors to Consider:
The manager must consider the length dedicated to the activity, willingness of the team to participate, the team’s overall time working together, and cultural backgrounds. Additionally, exploratory interviews for each profile within the team will assist with acquiring important information such as perceptions, personal challenges, and overall feedback. As a result, the manager will have a better understanding of their employees.
As the manager, the purpose of the activity must be clear. Is the purpose of the activity to target an individual behaviour, group behaviour or a group integration within a new context? Consider “group behaviour” as an example. Activities will include communication exercises, understanding each team member’s challenges, and building on relationships.
As the manager, you have a lot of flexibility. With regular activities, they’ll remain sweet and short, these typically encourage group involvement such as virtual coffee meets, lunch hour activities, easy-going online socializing, and more. These activities will result in a higher level of participation and work facilitation. As the manager, integrating these activities in the schedule with an enthusiastic approach will be necessary to encourage the employees. An enthusiastic energy will induce a positive vibe.
Keep in mind, virtual team building is delicate and must be carefully organized. The “must-knows” are the group challenges, the mindset of the team, and which activities are appropriate. This is an opportunity to bring a team together, especially during uncertain times. The ultimate goal is to remain focused, motivated, and positive towards the organizational objectives.