The Connected Manager

Effective Management in a Virtual World

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?

Five ways to derail your remote meeting

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 24 Jun 2014

Video conferences and webmeetings often feel like a bit of a train wreck. And that’s because they often get off to such a bad start. There are at least five things that can derail virtual meetings before they’ve even begun: here’s what they are and how to avoid them.

Project management: it's the people, stupid

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 10 Jun 2014

Many project managers forget that at the end of the day, every single milestone and box on their Gantt chart depends on people. So project managers who can’t manage people are in for a long, tough haul.

Should meetings be fun?

by Wayne Turmel | posted: 04 Jun 2014

Enjoying work means not being completely miserable, especially with the other human beings on your team. Which is why meetings can actually be fun - as long as you don't confuse 'fun' with 'fluff'.

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