The Connected Manager

Effective Management in a Virtual World

Managing change remotely

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 29 Oct 2014

Managing change isn't easy. It’s even harder when people are scattered across time zones, oceans and departments. Change is both inevitable and necessary. But it doesn’t have to be messy. So how can you effectively lead change in remote teams?

Your team members aren’t pawns in a chess game

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 16 Oct 2014

Project management and team leadership are often viewed as chess games. But there’s one important difference. Those pieces on the chess board aren’t human. Your team members are - and they need to be treated accordingly.

Getting feedback from a virtual audience

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 09 Oct 2014

Speaking to large groups online can be deeply disconcerting. Why? Because even in a one-way, lecture-type of presentation, you’re getting all kinds of feedback. But doing it virtually feels like you’re talking into a void.

Real rules need to be explicit

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 01 Oct 2014

Like baseball, every workplace has “unwritten rules” about how things work. That’s great, until something goes wrong. Since teamwork is a fragile dynamic at the best of times, it’s a good idea to determine the behaviors you expect from each other and make them explicit.

Ask your team a 3,000 year-old question

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 24 Sep 2014

It’s a simple question: “why is this meeting different from every other meeting?” But if you are mindful as to your meeting's purpose and desired outcome, you will accomplish far more than if you approach it as an empty ritual.

Faith, trust and teamwork

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 16 Sep 2014

Having faith is a wonderful thing. But today's project and functional teams need to run on trust. Why? Because unlike faith, trust is evidence-based, built on measurable results and can be restored through hard work.

Virtual meetings are very, very real

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 10 Sep 2014

If virtual meetings aren't real meetings, what are they? What purpose do they serve? So if we think about webmeetings and conferences as meetings first, and technology-enabled communication second, it could make a huge difference in the outcome.

Nobody’s paying attention: don’t panic

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 05 Sep 2014

If you feel that no one is paying attention on your conference calls, don’t worry about it. You’re not alone. Calls need to be managed to maintain focus and involvement. So plan them , don’t expect them to just magically happen.

Reviewing remote managers

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 28 Aug 2014

With performance review season looming, how should remote team leaders be evaluated? While the differences between managing remotely and co-locating are few, they are significant, and your terms of reference need to reflect that reality.

Every team needs communication rules

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 21 Aug 2014

It doesn't matter what you call it, the fact is that every team needs is a set of communication guidelines to help them work together more effectively. So what does one of these communication agreements look like - and how do you go about creating one?

Improving your remote coaching sessions

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 13 Aug 2014

We all know how important it is for managers to coach team members. But with remote teams, coaching conversations can be particularly tough to get right. Here’s how to get round the lack of non-verbal cues to make your remote coaching sessions more effective.

Too much one-on-one can damage team dynamics

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 05 Aug 2014

Good managers understand the importance of “one-on-ones”. But what if we are spending so much time on individual communication that we inadvertently create a problem for the team as a whole?

How wide is the digital skills gap?

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 29 Jul 2014

As any long-suffering IT support pro will tell you, many people use technology unbelievably badly. Just how badly is a real shock. So how long does it take to recognize that this skills gap is a real problem and to address it in a way that gets you some of your wasted time and money back?

Leading remotely is still leading

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 21 Jul 2014

Virtual teams may be shaking up organizational dynamics, but the fundamentals of how to lead a team are the same whether its members are all based in the same building as you or scattered across four continents.

Binary choices, poor decisions

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 08 Jul 2014

Choices don’t have to be binary. So embracing webinars and virtual meetings doesn’t mean you’ll never get together in person again. Nor does opting for a face-to-face meeting mean you have to turn your back on the wonders of technology.

Leading when you're not the boss

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 01 Jul 2014

Most of what we hear about leadership is about leading people who work for us or with us. But what do you do when the people most in need of coaching and guidance outrank you? How do you do that in a way that ensures you will still have a job?

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