Bringing Out the Best in Virtual Teams
Janet Schoenfeld (Poole & Associates, Inc., USA) and Zane Berge (University of Maryland, Baltimore County, USA)
Copyright: © 2005
The use of computer-mediated communication (CMC) is more popular than ever in both educational and corporate settings. Schools and corporations are using virtual communication to replace or supplement in-person classes and meetings. Many educators and managers are taking it a step further, having teams work in a virtual setting with members rarely or never meeting each other in person. Can a virtual team be as successful as a team where everyone works in the same physical location? Does anything different need to be done to compensate for the lack of face-to-face contact? This article identifies unique factors for virtual teams, and then provides recommendations and guidelines that can help virtual teams be successful. With the right planning, virtual teams can equal or exceed the performance of face-to-face teams.