Why Virtual teams? The Information Age Solution to Work
this chapter we explain why the conventional way in which people work is coming
unglued, how the fifty foot rule no longer applies, and how Virtual teams
are the "peopleware" of the 21st century.
when you worked with someone you meant that you both were in the same place
and in the same organization. That's no longer true. Now, in the Information
Age people no longer must be in the same place to work together. Soon for
most of us, the experience of crossing boundaries will be commonplace. We
will be joined in the tasks, challenges, and opportunities of virtual
We tell how Men's
Health, Rolling Stone and Esquire cooperated and created a virtual team and
won a major advertising contract. Also, how Sun Microsystems transformed its
operation through virtual teams.
- A virtual
team works across space, time and organizational boundaries with links strengthened
by webs of communication technologies.
- Virtual Teams
are "live"; not Memorex. They are definitely teams, not electronic
representations of the real thing.
- Virtual Teams
are going digital, using the Internet and intranets. One of the great
and important challenges before us is how we as individuals and as parts
of organizations create and participate in effective, efficient and satisfying
of Virtual Teams:
Virtual teams are composed of independent members with significant
autonomy and self reliance. Leadership is informal, and shared. Most members
are leaders at some point in the process.
The virtual team creates cooperative goals, undertakes independent
tasks and reaches for concrete results.
The explosion in communication technologies allows for the creation of virtual
teams. Multiple, constantly enhanced modes of communication are possible,
providing access to vast amounts of information and interaction. Virtual
teams operate on Internet time.
simple principles allow virtual teams to form quickly and solve complex
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