Overcoming Challenges on Remote Teams: Part 1

Working on teams where some or all team members are remote is becoming the norm rather than the exception. And frankly, having remote team members adds complexity that often times accelerates and amplifies communication breakdowns.

For example,

The Pain from the Story is Worse than the Pain Itself

I went to the dentist last week for the first of two visits to get a crown placed on a cracked tooth. Honestly, I hate going to the dentist. Don't get me wrong. My dentist is extremely competent, and I trust his work.

The 3 Keys to NOT Dropping the Baton

Have you ever watched a 400-meter relay team work?
On a good team, their hand-offs are impeccable.

In fact, given two teams of equal quality runners, the team with the more efficient
hand-offs always wins. The same holds true in the work place.

Own Your Opinions with "I" Statements

Effective communication is intentional. A simple tool for speaking assertively and authentically is using the "I" statement. Here is an exerpt from John W. Jacobs.

At the heart of better communication is the self-statement. A self-statement puts the responsibility for your emotional experience squarely on your shoulders. It is one single, easy-to-learn skill that can most dramatically improve the communication.

Improve How You Communicate Up

In many of my past articles, I have written about the importance of management’s influence on retention, productivity, morale, and employee satisfaction. You have heard me rant and rave about how “employees don’t leave organizations, they leave their managers.”

Well, there is a flip side to that coin too.

Every team member has a responsibility to effectively communicate with his or her manager. Let me say that a little bit stronger. You are primarily responsible for making sure communication with your manager is working.

Perceptions: How do they Influence You?

We all perceive the world according to our own reality. The experiences we have had in the past and the experiences we have today all create the perceptions that we hold about other people. Those perceptions influence our biases (and we all have biases), which in turn influence our behaviors.

Sometimes our biases are so ingrained that we don't even know they exist.

To be successful leaders and successful team members we have to become aware of our biases and how they influence our interactions with others in the workplace.

"I Am Who I AM" - The Popeye Syndrome: 5 Keys to Interpersonal Success

"I am who I am."

I can still remember sitting in front of the TV after school watching my favorite spinach-eating character flexing his "musKles" and saving the day.

But, my perspective of Popeye's quote, "I am who I am" recently changed when I heard a client use the phrase to describe people who had no interest in adapting and no interest in working with others who were different from them. "I am who I am, and if you don't like me - who cares."

Mattering or Marginalizing?

I recently learned a new concept from a colleague Amy Tolbert at ECCO International. Actually, it wasn't a new concept but it was just framed in a way that really resonated with me. It is called Mattering or Marginalizing.

Inspiring Communication: Starting with Yourself

There is no shortage of technical skills in today’s workplace, but finding people who can effectively communicate, collaborate, and cooperate is a different story. One of the most sought after requests I hear from my clients, prospects, and girlfriend is the need for better communication.

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