Saturday 4 December 2021

Project team skills

One of the most important aspects of project management is the effective use of communication to facilitate the group process. Effective communication is a key tool for the formation of cohesive project teams, also essential for the successful management of all project stakeholders. 

Developed teamwork skills will simplify the work of the project manager.

In the case where the entire project team is located in one office, or at least in one city, most of the problems associated with communication within the team can be avoided simply by regularly communicating with the team. 

When working in virtual teams, there is no opportunity to meet in person and discuss everything, you have to use electronic types of communications: e-mail, phone, Skype, etc. The likelihood of disruption of communications in the team increases many times.

Just imagine that most virtual project teams never meet in person and don't always know each other in person. About 50% of communications are non-verbal, which means that a person loses a significant amount of message content if they cannot see their opponent. Articulation, gestures, body posture, eye movement all this gives us a large amount of information about our interlocutor.

Nowadays, global corporations, largely due to staff reductions, strategic outsourcing, or the redeployment of organizations' workforce due to mergers and acquisitions, virtual project teams are becoming the rule, not the exception. When we think of the virtual environment of teams, our thoughts usually gravitate toward globally distributed projects. In global design environments, the skills to manage virtual project teams are absolutely essential to both the project manager and the team.

Cultural diversity was once one of the biggest differences between a traditional project team and a virtual project team. Now, cultural diversity is part of the normal composition of the team, leading to a greater degree of tolerance among people who understand that the person they are dealing with may or may not know their cultural norms. Consequently, much more serious problems have begun to arise, as they have now gone beyond the spent limit of tolerance.

Even if the project team is not geographically dispersed, it is likely that it will consist of employees representing a variety of cultures, religions and backgrounds. Differing backgrounds and experiences are a great advantage that disparate teams have over other teams, as diversity leads to a diversity of thought and creativity. The difficulty is that each team member needs to be listened to, respected and seriously considered their suggestions.

Virtual team skills become critical to successful project management, even if the project team is located within the same geographic region or even if the team is located in the neighborhood. We have been involved in several projects in large organizations where most of the project team was housed in one building and the remainder was located within one or two buildings.

This lack of close proximity can cause team members to feel isolated and misunderstood, leading to significant problems for the project manager. When team members realize they are not being taken into account, they tend to withdraw, stop sharing data, and information often becomes inaccessible.

Recognition of personality traits and allocation of time to consider all points of view is the basic principle of forming constructive cooperation and trust within the project team. The trust that team members have in their supervisor and in each other is essential for the effective work of the project team.

Trust is one of the elements that encourages and inspires every member of the project team. The longer this cycle repeats, the more cohesive and effective the team becomes.

When it comes to building trust, treating a neighborhood group as a virtual team can be a very effective way to speed up the process. Remote team members usually do not meet in person, which is important for building mutual understanding, understanding personality traits and improving relationships.

To overcome this barrier, virtual teams must show respect and learn to refrain from making assumptions or rash conclusions. Teams with multicultural composition are more likely to make rash assumptions. Virtual teams are able to overcome this barrier more easily, as they are, in fact, even more aware of this dynamic when participating in group discussions. 

How many projects have you managed or been involved in that have used this method more effectively?

All of the previous issues discussed were difficulties that the virtual project team has to work to overcome, and the teams in the neighborhood take them for granted, even though they face many of the same challenges. Although there are a number of special advantages associated with these difficulties that a virtual team has over a related team.

First, in addition to the content of the message being conveyed, a person's gestures and facial expressions also help communicate a person's social position, character traits, and position in the organization's hierarchy. These signs are less likely to affect virtual teams.

This means that virtual teams can be less intimidated when it comes to discussing what's on their minds or questioning an idea put forward by a high-ranking person in the organization. What is important here is that the usual hierarchies, formal and informal, are less pronounced in the virtual environment. If the project manager manages this correctly, then a "less pronounced" hierarchy could theoretically turn each interaction into a synergistic brainstorming session. This can bring considerable benefits to each team.

Another benefit of virtual teams is that team members are less likely to be judged based on gender, race, religion, national origin, class, or age. Even though we don't want to believe it, but in this case, people still judge first by appearance and then by content.

This is mostly because of past experiences, our childhood, and other inner beliefs. Having the ability to eliminate this subjective filter is a very significant advantage and one of those from which we can all benefit if we take the time to actively eliminate it, that is, understand that we are at work, and reduce its impact.

No comments:

Post a Comment