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Remote Leadership Fact Sheet #3: Virtual Communication

Remote Leadership Fact Sheet # 3: Virtual Communication

1. Netiquette

If you lead your employees virtually and may not be able to see them for a long period of time, contact will maintained mostly via e-mail – i.e. in writing. Then it makes sense to agree a „netiquette“ with all employees. For example, agree to:

  • just write short emails and get straight to the point or
  • prevent cc mass distributors.

2. Meeting structure

Virtual meetings, meant to actually avoid decision uncertainty, can spread like oil spills throughout the day and paralyze employees in the home office. If there are no critical events, stick to the regular working hours when scheduling.
Daily virtual meetings always have the same agenda:

  1. Short small talk for warm-up
  2. What were your plans from last week to today?
  3. What worked?
  4. What didn’t work out yet?
  5. What are you planning to do next week?
  6. What do you need from me?
  7. Regular time window for technical questions, such as the functions of the conference application (background picture, still picture, going to the toilet, chat function for questions, lifting hands, etc.)

Basically, this structure is the same as today’s stand-up meetings at Scrum. The advantage of these meetings is that they always follow the same process: employees can prepare, the most important points came up on the table. (If there is a need to deviate from the meeting agenda, the changed agenda should be made available to all meeting participants in good time for the same reason.

3. Game rules apply to everyone

Binding rules of the game are essential for distance leadership to function. The main rules are:

  1. Schedule weekly time slots for each member of your team (30 to a maximum of 60 minutes).
  2. The agreed time is reserved exclusively for the respective employee. During this time, he is the most important person in the world.
  3. External disturbances are ignored during this time.
  4. The initiative starts from the employee. Employees are responsible for checking in at the agreed time.
  5. Nobody calls too early or extends the talk time.

On the one hand, this is necessary because of the consideration given to the other employees, who are already waiting for their time slot, but on the other hand, to accustom all employees to their limits.

4. Inform employees

Just as you say „hello“ in a company or office, or with an appreciative eye contact to show the employee that you have noticed him, this gesture is also needed in virtual space. Not long, but continuously.

  • A short SMS can serve as a „sign of life“: „Good morning“, „Looking forward to meeting xy right away“, „How is your cold today?“ or „head up“. These short messages show your employee that you are (honestly!) interested in him.

5. Conflict competence

Conflict competence is an essential key competence of today’s cooperation and leadership. Each personal development begins with the right attitude and self-reflection. If you feel attacked, misunderstood or ignored, the most important rule is: don’t take it too personally. Words are words and only make up about seven percent of communication. (Therefore, written formulations are quickly misleading.)

  • Notice your displeasure and take a deep breath before answering. If after the second email exchange you are still bubbling, talk to the person concerned.
  • Here the first question can be: „You have formulated xy. That came to me so and so, how was it meant?“ Say you ask what and how the other meant. When talking on the phone, a further 38 percent more is passed on to communication.
  • If you convene a virtual conference, you will even see the person opposite you and can get up to 100 percent communication (the remaining 55 percent of the communication that makes up body language is added).

ILD Logo 1024x230 - Remote Leadership Fact Sheet #3: Virtual Communication

In proven collaboration, the Institute for Leadership Dynamics (ILD) and Psychologie Halensee have developed a joint online program to strengthen resilience and leadership effectiveness in crises: the Remote Leadership & Collaboration program.

The fact sheets are part of the info package for internal employee communication with curated and quality-assured expert content on organization, communication and health under the conditions of remote leadership & collaboration

 


ILD Logo - Remote Leadership Fact Sheet #3: Virtual Communication

In proven collaboration, the Institute for Leadership Dynamics (ILD) and Psychologie Halensee have developed a joint online program to strengthen resilience and leadership effectiveness in crises: the Remote Leadership & Collaboration program.

The fact sheets are part of the info package for internal employee communication with curated and quality-assured expert content on organisation, communication and health under the conditions of remote leadership & collaboration.

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