Category Archives: Virtual Teams

Succeeding in a Virtual Team Environment

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs) of Effective Virtual Team Members.

Building on related work in the academic field, Newman (2005) offers an extensive list of the knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) of effective virtual team members, including:

Listens effectively Well organized Objective
Communicates often Provides feedback Respects others
Shows initiative Flexible Positive attitude
Trustworthy/ dependable Dedicated to doing a good job Self-motivated
Willing to do their fair share Open to the views of others Provides work in a timely fashion
Reads and understands the material Works well without supervision Able to compromise / reach consensus
Communicates effectively through writing

Collaboration Effectiveness in a Virtual Environment

The following four “cornerstones” are presented as necessary elements in the development and sustainability of a virtual team: direction, competence, opportunity and motivation (Harwood, 2008). This is referred to as the DCOM model, using the abbreviation of the four elemental words: Direction, Competence, Opportunity, and Motivation.

Cornerstone Considerations for Virtual Organizations
Direction – the why and the how of doing the work How clear is the direction that collaboration is required as part of the strategy – and is essential to success?
Competence – KSAs needed Do people have the technical and interpersonal skills they need to collaborate effectively across boundaries?
Opportunity – enabling team with support and resources, technology, work processes Do work processes incorporate time zone and other boundary conditions? Is technology leveraged to support collaboration?
Motivation – performance based on willingness to do the work What practices have been put in place to keep people informed, five helpful feedback, and recognize success as a total network?