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Virtual collaboration is now the rule, rather than the exception. To give virtual teams the traction they need, transparent communication and structured feedback are a vital.
Almost overnight, COVID-19 forced teams and organisations to reinvent the way they work, collaborate and communicate. We suddenly had to manage the full range of duties, complex projects and skilled teams from improvised ‘home offices’. Physical one-to-ones, impromptu chats at the coffee machine, team-building sessions and workshops with colleagues had to make way for structured, but really rather cursory virtual calls.
We have all had to exhibit flexibility, and many of us have become accustomed to this new way of working. But, for some of us, the initial enthusiasm has given way to doubt. Not only does the reduced contact threaten to soften the bonds with the company and weaken the cohesion between team members, but it also throws up uncertainties at the individual level. “How am I actually contributing, is it still to standard and what can I change to become more effective in the present circumstances?”
It is important to continue to take the time to answer these questions for our colleagues, to show openness and appreciation and to give clear feedback for the sake of our continued growth and development. Ongoing dialogue with each other, and, more specifically, between manager and employee, is of prime importance. Organisations can also incorporate regular opportunities for feedback. On the basis of that feedback they can optimise virtual collaboration and individual achievements in virtual teams.
Here, existing HR tools such as Multi-Rater Feedback (360°) can deliver a substantial contribution. With a few clicks simply select the skills to assess in your employees or virtual teams, and the tool does the rest. Not only does it allow colleagues to help each other with their further development from the home office, but it prepares and arms teams and organisations as a whole for the challenges currently posed by our reshaped society.
Structured set-up, monitoring and transparent communication are essential to a 360° feedback project, as a means of guaranteeing participant engagement and the quality of the feedback given. Hudson is highly experienced in the management and support of 360° feedback projects: everything from ad hoc, individual, feedback pathways to large-scale feedback processes initiated regularly at the organisational level.
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