A recognised challenge in virtual teams is that members get invited to too many meetings and calls. Feedback suggests that virtual team members spend two days per week in these meetings, but that only half of it is relevant.
Many of the people we train are part of an average of five virtual teams, each averaging 11 members. Often they operate in a formal or informal matrix organization structure so they get invited to attend meetings and calls, and are copied on emails from multiple reporting lines as well as multiple teams.
The Global Integration “star and spaghetti” process is a highlight of our virtual teams training and helps participants and teams define where it really adds value to collaborate and, even more importantly, where not.
One challenge in cancelling so many unproductive meetings and calls is that people worry that their people will not feel “involved” or “engaged”. This is far from the truth: we have worked with virtual teams where we have reduced the volume of communication and increased engagement and satisfaction with communication by more than 25%.
Attending poor quality, unnecessary meetings does not make anyone feel engaged or involved. Engagement derives from being involved in really substantive and productive decision making and working sessions.
By cutting our unnecessary meetings and other communication in virtual teams and refocussing our valuable time on really productive and engaging topics we can save time and cost and actually increase engagement and involvement. It is a ‘win-win’ that requires very little investment: but it does require a change in mindset.
Post by Kevan Hall, CEO and founder, Global Integration.
Kevan can be contacted as follows:
e: Kevan at global-integration.com
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