How do you lead your direct reports when you rarely see them?
Globalization, technology, work life balance, and outsourcing have all created a workplace where leaders rarely see the individuals they lead, and often struggle to use their skills (Diagnosis, Flexibility, and Partnering for Performance) without face-to-face contact. With so many leaders managing team members who are living in different time zones, countries, and continents, or even just in different locations in the same city, there is an ever increasing need for people who don’t see each other frequently to figure out how to work better together.
The Leading Virtually program recognizes there are lots of challenges to being a great virtual leader. The good news is that leaders can overcome these challenges. The three specific areas of leadership focus described in this program are called disciplines because effective virtual leaders deliberately choose how they interact.
The three disciplines of leading virtually
- Discipline I: Focus Attentiveness— Attentiveness means knowing the goals, motivation, needs, and experiences of team members and recognizing when changes occur. Since working effectively in a virtual environment requires high levels of independence, leaders must consistently communicate their desire to connect with the personality and experiences of those with whom they work.
- Discipline II: Foster Community—Most of us are unaware of how much we connect to an organization and a team by being on-site. We pick up cultural clues and norms by observing behavior, dress, language, behavioral norms, and communication patterns. Effective virtual leaders work diligently to connect team members to the larger organization by actively facilitating collaboration, creating the team culture, and helping virtual workers unite to build community spirit.
- Discipline III: Accelerate Development—It is too easy to lose track of the development needs of people who work virtually. Virtual leaders need to stay focused on team members’ career and personal goals and find ways for them to develop. This increases satisfaction, builds loyalty, and creates a more valuable employee.
This program is designed for leaders and team leaders who are faced with effectively leading people who work in a remote location.
Leading Virtually increases each leader’s effectiveness by
- Sharing insights into the challenges of virtual leadership.
- Reinforcing the critical Situational Leadership® II skills of Diagnosis, Flexibility, and Partnering for Performance, and their use in a virtual environment.
- Creating an action plan to incorporate their new skills back on the job.
Program Delivery Options
The Leading Virtually program was developed to take advantage of the latest in multimedia technology. It uses experiential learning methodologies and a variety of optimal learning techniques. The training design alternates between presentation of research-based learnings, interactive activities, and at-home application by focusing on specific tools, disciplines, and practices required for effective virtual leadership. The sessions are active and engaging with a variety of chats, polls, and large and small group discussions.
It includes three 90-minute WebEx sessions with fieldwork and is designed to be presented in one day with 60 minutes between sessions.
Sustainability describes the learning process and activities that need to occur before, during, and after training to ensure on-the-job application of new behaviors that are required to maximize the probability of achieving business results. There is a vital link between learning and development, your business issues and strategic goals, and accountability. It rests with having a sustainability strategy for turning learning into behavior.
Coaching to Support Learning
Communication Skills for Managers and Individual Contributors