The management of virtual projects is fundamentally different from that of traditional projects. Furthermore, the research in this area comes from different reference disciplines and perspectives, and a unified view or theory of best practices does not yet exist. Being able to combine perspectives in a seamless way with skills and technology could provide integrative blueprints for best practices in virtual projects. We use the theoretical frame of patterns to propose such a view. We focus on three concepts as the underlying theoretical elements for identifying patterns of effectiveness in virtual project management: (1) coordination, (2) communication, and (3) control. As a first step in the identification of specific patterns, we conducted a series of virtual focus groups with participants from industry who had real experience with virtual projects. The brainstorming data from the focus groups was analyzed to develop an initial set of patterns. The study represents a first step in an iterative and evolutionary process.