Virtual teams have become an essential part of modern business processes in the current age, promoting distanced social interaction across the world.
Distinct guidelines are used to define teamwork in the digital environment (Morrison-Smith & Ruiz, 2020). Contemporary management advice suggests that efficiency in virtual teams is considered accomplished when the necessary tasks are completed and social bonds are maintained (Mitra, 2020). As such, virtual teammates should be able to manifest good communication skills in the digital environment, as well as possesses an increased level of emotional intelligence to connect to other group members (Marlow, Lacerenza, and Salas, 2017).
In addition, it is essential to obtain the capability to work independently from others, lacking the necessity to maintain communication for a significant amount of time (Morgan, Paucar-Caceres, and Wright, 2014). Therefore, if all of these requirements are met, and the demanded results have been achieved according to the timeline, the virtual team can be designated effective.
These characteristics are drastically different from traditional working groups, which rely on consistent communication between employees. Although excellent interaction skills are still required, a smaller level of emotional intelligence is needed as the majority of conversations are supported by physical presence (Ferrazzi, 2014). Furthermore, the demand to work independently is less stressed in traditional teams, as communication opportunities are always available for the workers (Duran & Popescu, 2014). Thus, lacking the usual support of their teammates, employees working in virtual teams should be more resilient and introversive, which might be a significant burden for numerous individuals.
A pertinent example, including pandemic-related issues of maintaining virtual teams, is the recent report by Microsoft. The CEO of the corporation claims that Microsoft is beginning to lose its social capital, and workers report that they strongly desire to return to the traditional environment, as their performance rates started to drop following the work-from-home regulations (Baym, Larson, and Martin, 2021). In this regard, it is evident that maintaining effective teamwork in virtual teams requires additional effort and the implementation of distinct strategies from management executives.
Baym, N., Larson, J. and Martin, R. (2021) ‘What a year of WFH has done to our relationships at work’, Harvard Business Review. Web.
Duran, V. and Popescu, A.-D. (2014) ‘The challenge of multicultural communication in virtual teams’, Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 109, pp. 365–369. Web.
Ferrazzi, K. (2014) ‘Getting virtual teams right’, Harvard Business Review. Web.
Marlow, S. L., Lacerenza, C. N. and Salas, E. (2017) ‘Communication in virtual teams: a conceptual framework and research agenda’, Human Resource Management Review, 27(4), pp. 575–589. Web.
Mitra, J. (2020) Entrepreneurship, innovation and regional development. 2nd ed. Oxon: Routledge.
Morgan, L., Paucar-Caceres, A. and Wright, G. (2014) ‘Leading effective global virtual teams: The consequences of methods of communication’, Systemic Practice and Action Research, 27(6), pp. 607–624. Web.
Morrison-Smith, S. and Ruiz, J. (2020) ‘Challenges and barriers in virtual teams: a literature review’, SN Applied Sciences, 2(6), p. 1096. Web.