Technological advancement is rapidly creating changes in the way of doing work and workplace cultures. It has made it possible for teams to work remotely at their convenient places away from the office. This has encouraged the development of improved methods to manage remote workers without seeing or interacting with them physically. Effective measures should be taken to enhance collaboration and ensure that virtual teams are fully engaged (Jude, 2017). This paper intends to discuss the personal facts guessing game, which is an effective team-building activity, and elements of a successful virtual team.
Introduction of the Team Activity
Brief Outline of the Online Activity
Personal facts guessing game offers a great method of learning about the interactions and interests of individual members of a team. The game usually starts with the manager requesting team members to share their facts. The next step involves compiling the presented facts onto a document that is shared among the members (Alsharo et al., 2017). An empty column is provided next to the personal fact where every worker is expected to guess the owner of each of the facts.
The game offers an effective method of developing strong and successful team camaraderie and cohesion. Upon the submission of guesses, answers are given for members to see their predictions. In some cases, the activities can be done on a group video chat to enhance interactions (Alsharo et al., 2017). The manager or facilitator makes a follow-up and places the provided answer in an empty column. Answers are shared with every member to improve understanding of each other and learning what members expect.
Performance of the Team
The performance of the team was recommendable because everyone participated fully and completed the task within the provided time. Everyone seemed motivated to provide feelings and attitudes towards others in the team. The guesswork enabled the manager to understand areas that needed improvement to enhance cohesion and promote teamwork (Mysirlaki & Paraskeva, 2019). The strong spirit was an indication that the team was willing to achieve greater outcomes and help each other grow.
The team faced a critical incident since most of the members took a longer time than expected to understand the requirements of the game. The manager had to repeat the instructions because some members had provided an irrelevant answer that could not be used. However, the manager emphasized the expectation and role of everyone, making the game a success in the second round (Hwang, 2018). Since there was no face-to-face interaction, it was difficult to identify problems that each member faced. It was not possible to look for signs because of geographical differences.
Elements for Successful Virtual Team Management and Performance
Working remotely is slowly becoming common as the search for talents is extending beyond geographical limitations and the cost of transport continues to rise. Many companies are now embracing virtual teamwork to support their daily operations (Jude, 2017). However, companies must distinguish performing workers from others by focusing on various elements of a successful team, including autonomy, collaboration, communication, trust, and motivation. The successful virtual team must be determined to facilitate the achievement of the organization’s mission and objectives.
A successful virtual tends to collaborate effectively across space and time to enhance the achievement of the set objectives. The teams work together to ensure that everyone’s talent is utilized properly for the benefit of the organization. Processes and systems are designed in such a manner that everyone would feel motivated and committed to serving in the best way possible. It is necessary to use effective tools to promote remote teamwork and virtual collaboration (Hwang, 2018). Transparency is important, particularly where everyone can see what others are doing. Virtual team tools promote collaboration allowing everyone to participate in a given project.
Trust is considered the base of an effective virtual team, and every effort should be put in place to build it among members. Building trust requires time since it is developed slowly as members learn more about each other and gain confidence. Jude (2017) reveals that trust plays an essential role in the improvement of teams’ performance. Trust-based interaction is beneficial to virtual teams since it enhances responsibility, accountability, and commitment to task completion.
Promoting responsibility among the team members influences accountability and engagement greatly. Delegation of duties encourages members to take initiative and gain better skills to take more challenging responsibilities. They learn how to make critical decisions and gain higher desire and commitment towards the achievement of the set objectives (Alsharo et al., 2017). Moreover, autonomy improves the ability of the team to evaluate the situation and take the most appropriate action even when working under minimal supervision.
Teams need to remain focused on the achievement of the set goals, and nothing should disrupt them. Leaders should motivate members to ensure that everyone feels included in the activities of the organization. This can be achieved by celebrating and recognizing the achievements and successes of teams (Alsharo et al., 2017). Inspired members are more likely to be committed, determined to work hard, and willing to address existing problems. Motivation offers a sense of purpose, encouraging members to align their individual goals with the organizational values and mission.
A successful virtue team should have open lines of communication since face-to-face interaction is usually rare or impossible. Consistent contact eliminates geographical differences by enhancing responsiveness, accessibility, and feedback (Hwang, 2018). Virtual communication tools can enable members to share information in real-time and handle complex projects. Organizations can achieve greater efficiency when working with virtual teams and better leverage their resources. Managers have a role to play in ensuring that their teams remain productive, efficient, and engaged in every activity.
Theoretical frameworks offer guidelines for the development and implementation of virtual teams. As Darics and Gatti (2019) observed, any organization intending to use virtual teams must be prepared to deal with problems that are likely to emerge. They can determine their readiness by evaluating many factors including structural requirements, selection of the right people, appropriate process design, and the extent of interdependence between tasks. Integration of these factors determines the appropriate implementation methodology. This means that organizations should consider the benefits of virtual teams that cannot be achieved when working from the office to justify their implementation. Moreover, it is important to use effective tools and systems that would enhance productivity and make it easier to monitor the activities of everyone in the team.
The performance of my team is recommendable based on the identified elements for successful virtual teams. The team managed to achieve its objective by sharing information properly, collaborating, showing determination, and communicating efficiently. Although they were working from different places, they remained focused and interested in the achievement of the set objective, which ensured high productivity (Alsharo et al., 2017). Many things worked for the team, including interacting positively and working together to meet strict deadlines and offer quality results.
The team faced many challenges including poor communication ground rules, lack of adequate contribution during meetings, and delays in the presenting of issues affecting individual members. The team did not have appropriate rules to guide its communication and interaction between members in the first days. This brought problems because members were not sure about the information they should provide when allowed to speak (Seetharaman et al., 2019). These problems were addressed when the management designed an effective communication and interaction structure that prompted every member to offer the necessary information. It enabled the team to provide the right information and in the correct manner. Elimination of undesired information made it easy for members to understand each other and for the management to compile provided data.
Learned Information and Recommendation
The experience helped me realize that virtual teams can achieve desirable results and help their organization achieve their objectives. Although they operate remotely, I realized that it is possible to promote their interaction and communication similar to a traditional office. This made it clear to me that a successful virtual team must communicate and coordinate efficiently. As reiterated by Mysirlaki and Paraskeva (2019), members must develop interests that align with those of their organization to achieve the desired outcome. Moreover, they must show autonomy, coordinate, communicate efficiently, trust each other, and remain motivated.
Organizations should provide all the necessary resources to support the work of virtual teams. They should offer effective systems and tools to enable every member to work in the best way possible and remain focused. Elimination of obstacles can motivate the team and encourage everyone to offer desirable services (Seetharaman et al., 2019). Moreover, organizations should provide a favorable working environment where everyone would feel comfortable and determined. It is necessary to develop effective solutions to arising issues and ensure that nothing obstructs hard work.
Technology advancement is making it important for organizations to embrace virtual teams to work remotely. Personal facts guessing game is a beneficial virtual team activity that facilitates team building, enhances interaction and communication among members. Successful virtual team management and performance have various elements including trust, collaboration, effective communication, autonomy, and motivation. Organizations should prepare properly to manage and monitor virtual teams to achieve the set objectives. This virtual team achieved a desirable outcome and eliminated all issues affecting its progress. The experience was beneficial and helped me understand the role and potential of virtual teams.
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Seetharaman, A., Saravanan, A. S., Patwa, N., Niranjan, I., Jadhav, V., & Porkodi, V. P. (2019). Impact of knowledge sharing on virtual team projects. International Journal of Knowledge Management Studies, 10(4), 337-364. Web.