Effective Virtual Team Leadership

1082 words | 4 page(s)

In order for the project to successfully transition to a virtual leadership requires having strong communication and working with different stakeholders. Initially, this will take place with them sharing their ideas on: different bulletin boards, text messages, emails, on the company website and actual meetings. The combination of these factors will establish an initial foundation for understanding and adapting with numerous challenges during the process. (Robbins, 1991) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

The highest levels of communication will occur through discussing the long term impact of select strategies on them. This is when upper management will have a series of conversations about virtual leadership on numerous platforms. As it is unfolding, these executives can hear different views surrounding the firm’s strategy. (Robbins, 1991) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

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Another avenue is to create a Facebook page for managers and board members to communicate with each other. This will allow them to share their ideas, address concerns and go over different strategies / techniques. These discussions will create a platform for learning and applying virtual leadership techniques. This can be utilized to help motivate others and make a difference for the entire organization. (Robbins, 1991) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

Moreover, high level executive meetings will take place through a series of virtual conference calls using Skype. Under this strategy, they will meet with each other once a week and discuss what is happening. This is when they will talk about: transformations, the best ways to lead and key issues to be aware of. After every meeting, these insights can be used by executives to effectively guide other stakeholders and provide them with prudent advice. (Robbins, 1991) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

This will help executives to determine possible areas of resistance and beliefs that are supported by everyone. When this happens, management can be more effective in creating a message and transition strategy. That will address any fears and reduce the negative impacts from them. It is this point, when communication will improve and they can see the benefits. (Robbins, 1991) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

To support the implementation to this business model requires using several different change platforms in conjunction with each other. These include: empirical – rationale, normative – reeducative and environmental – adaptive. All of these together, will help the organization to run smoothly by utilizing the principles from each one to address the needs of stakeholders. This is when everyone will become more supportive and make it as successful as possible. (Nickols, 2010) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

The empirical – rationale approach is concentrating on presenting changes through each person’s own self interests. This is achieved by discussing how the new transformation will benefit employees and managers. In some cases, there will be a focus on values and the way it is enabling them to help customers more. While at the same time, it is underscoring the kinds of lucrative financial and non monetary benefits that will be received. Over the course of time, this will offer everyone with other reasons for supporting these changes. (Nickols, 2010) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

The normative – reeducative methodology believes that all people are social beings and want to have a greater sense of purpose. In this situation, the transformation can let everybody know the societal advantages such as: spending greater amounts of time with their family / friends and a sense of freedom. Moreover, they can work with some of the best professionals inside the sector. This allows them to learn new techniques and gain experience in the process. (Nickols, 2010) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

The environmental – adaptive philosophy is focusing on how to reduce the disruptions in people’s lives. Under this theory, it is believed that if this can be minimized. The staff will realize long term rewards and support these changes from the limited short term effects. For the virtual call center, this will make the transformations easier. Once this takes place, is the point employees and managers will be more comfortable supporting these changes. This is when they can see the continuing benefit from it in the future. (Nickols, 2010) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

The basic management strategies to support communication include: empirical – rationale, normative – reeducative and environmental – adaptive. These ideas will help to reach out to everyone and create standards for them to follow. When this happens, they are inspired to do more and will go the extra mile for the firm. In virtual leadership, these tactics are essential in bringing different stakeholders together. (Nickols, 2010) (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

Stakeholder Analysis
The various stakeholders that will be impacted by the project include: customers, employees and managers. Customers will be affected by not having their calls sent to a third party provider or a company owned call center. Instead, they will be speaking with virtual employees from around the world. Employees will be impacted, as they are considered to be independent contractors and will have a negotiated hourly rate. In the case of managers, they must have effective monitoring procedures. (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

What will change for each group?
Customer will have more support. Yet, they must provide greater amounts of information to be directed to the right location. The duties of employees will shift with them having predetermined objectives to meet versus someone constantly watching over them. While, managers will focus on: employee satisfaction, effective communication and evaluating customer satisfaction (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

Anticipated Benefits
For customers, they will have better service and can quickly address their issues. In the case of employees, this makes the work environment more comfortable and these skills are in demand. Whereas managers, will have a larger team which is more specialized. (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

For customers, the risks are that they will go from one virtual agent to the next. This is challenging, as it will make it difficult for them to solve their problems. While employees, could engage in activities that will reduce productivity by not dealing with customer issues. Yet, it is just enough to meet the firm’s minimum objectives. (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

Key Message and Timing
The key message for everyone is that the virtual call center will provide benefits to all stakeholders. The timeframe will focus on a period ranging from six months to one year. The chosen methods of delivery to raise awareness will be through: different text messages, emails, posts on social networking sites (such as: Facebook) and an announcement on the home page of the company’s website. (Anton, 1999) (Conner, 2006) (Ruyter, 2005)

  • Anton, J. (1999). Call Center Performance. West Lafayette, IN: Perdue University Press.
  • Conner, P. (2006). Customer Service. Tulsa, OK: Pennwall.
  • Ruyter, K. (2005). Cases in Call Center Management. West Lafayette, IN: Perdue University Press.

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