Article: Can Absense Make a Team Grow Stronger and Want Collaboration?
This reflection is again an insight into the working of my team on Distaster Relief and Coordination.
In my experience with working with my virtual team mates, I feel that the absense has made the team definately stronger, more motivated to accomplish goals, be effective and efficient in all that we do for the team project.
The team consits of diverse members who all bring valuable input to the project. Utilizing technology we have been able to do more than one thing at a time. While being in Second Life for a group meeting, we are simultaneously researching or providing examples relavant to the meeting. That really helps when you are not really face to face and yet you are able to provide media rich content virtually. While being in Second Life, we use SharePoint to cross reference and follow other team members posts and threaded discussions. Using the latest technology and collaborative tools has certainly made this part easy.
The main problems that we have had so far is getting all the team members together for the team meetings. Most of the members make it, but due to the places the work takes them, sometimes it's not possible for all team members to be there. We have been able to make up for that by communicating over email, discussions on SharePoint, and sometimes by putting our information on blogs as well. So far our best tool to collaborate has be email, Sharepoint, Second Life, and Skype, in that order. I think by far email has worked for us for the most part since we have such a small group to work with.
We haven't had to face any conflict in our group as of yet. We haven't had any issues that we felt had to be managed. I guess that is an advantage of working with a small group and that too virtually! Plus the time span for this group has been so small that there isn't room for conflict within team members. Each team member wants to contribute effectively towards our project considering time and distance constraints.
But I do realize that the problems are larger in bigger groups. Trying to collaborate with members in a large corporate environment working globally can provide real challenges. Being in a smaller group has given me a chance to see the problems on a small scale for sure.