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IT Performance Improvement (ITPI) is where IT professionals share their expertise in making IT organizations and people perform better. ITPI covers such topics as:


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Contact John Wyzalek editor of IT Performance Improvement.


 

Articles from Past Issues

IT Infrastructure

Responsibility for Defect Support

Systems Availability: The View from 30,000 Feet

Why Should the IT Helpdesk be Responsible for Authorizations?

Application Selection Dictates Hardware Selection

Maintenance in the Digital World

The Importance of Data and Storage

The Disk Drive: The Fundamental Building Block of Enterprise Storage

Evolving Open Source License Management Processes

Reducing Resource Use

Equipment Energy Consumption: Commonsense Items to Consider

Implementing a Green and Virtual Data Center

Electric Energy and Applicable Metrics

The Importance of Software Security

Why Green Works for Device Purchases

Mobile Security Issues

Effective Physical Security of a Mobile Device

Security for the Enterprise Mobile Device Life Cycle

Evolution of Mobile Threats

Licensing Cloud Resources and Services

Securing Storage

Data Protection: Setting the Right Objectives

Virtualization, Storage Tiers and Manual Data Movement

Spending Wisely on Performance

IT Data Center "Green" Myths and Realties

Common IT Resource Management Activities

Data Storage and Network Security

Metrics for Hard Disk Drives and Solid State Devices

Healthy and Beneficial Backup Paranoia

Ten Things Still Wrong with Data Protection Attitudes

IT Service Management, Business Service Management and Business-IT Integration

Service Management Implementation Overview

IT Release Management

Backup and Recovery Best Practices

Service Level Agreements and IT Bill-Back

Preventing Cloud Vendor Lock-in

Monitoring-as-a-Service

Evaluating Cloud Servers and Solutions

Enabling Efficient, Effective, and Productive Information Services Delivery

Preventing Cloud Vendor Lock-in

Monitoring-as-a-Service

Green Technology Can Improve Data Center Performance

Using Backup and Recovery to Track and Forecast Data Growth

Business Continuity Management in the Cloud


Project Management

Developing Trust

Agile Concepts for Project Management

Why Risk Management?

Five Principles of Building Strong Business Relationships

A Reality Check for Project Managers

What Is Project Management Maturity?

The Scope of Project Scope Management

Two Weeks in Fire-Fighting Mode

Project Health Assessment Process

A Highly Creative, Process-Focused Project: A Case Study

Ten Keys of Influence

Why Corporate Governance?

Discovering the New Project Leader in You

Reducing Change on Projects

Creativity and Project Management

Project Management Methodology in the Smaller PMO

The Power of Project Team Members

Cultural Communication Issues and Project E-Leadership

Program Management Processes and the PMO

An Effective Process-Based Management Approach: A Case Study

Case Study: Transparency during New Product Development Program

Interview with a Program Manager: Krissy Wolle

The Service-Based Project Leader

Leadership, Communication, Technology, and Complexity

Establishing Business Needs and Initial Project Scope

The Five Leadership Principles

General Guidelines for a Requirements Plan'

Sustainable Innovation through Portfolio, Program, and Project Management

The Power of the Principles in Project Management

Establishing a Culture of Execution and Excellence

How to Address Change Resistance and Manage Change

How Does Program Management Close the Gap?

The New Triple Constraints for Sustainability

Changing the Way People Think about Green

Project Resource Optimization

Understanding Leadership

Five Key Actions for Turning around Projects

Dealing with Change

A Project's Journey through Colors

Achieving the Power of Enterprise-Wide Project Management

Tips for the End of a Project

Program Manager Personal Competencies

Overview of the Levin-Ward Program Management Competency Model

Toward a Competency Model for Program Managers

Examining Managerial Complexity

The Ethical Challenges in Managing Projects

Green, Quality, and Greenality

Cost of Greenality

Dealing with Change

Team Leader, Team Member

Healthcare: A Unique Environment for Project Management

Release Management and Project Management

Taking a PMO to the Next Level: Four Steps to Value Improvement

Complex Program Management with Scrum

Balanced Scorecard: Establishing Project Performance Measures

Delivering Strategic Benefits with Program Management

Three Perspectives on Project Management Business Value

Green: Positively Affecting Project Success

Better Requirements for Better Managing Outsourced Projects


Metrics

A Guide to Sizing and Estimating Projects

Understanding Your Organization's Best Software Development Practices

Achieving Business Objectives: Building a Software Metrics Support Structure

Connecting Improvement with Business Objectives: Objective-Driven Process Improvement

Process Improvement

Too Many Metrics and Not Enough Data

A Framework for Measuring the Value of Software Development

Using Measurement to Identify Improved IT Performance


IT Management

Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS)

Information Security for Systems

Building the Foundation for Data Analytics

So What Is Big Data?

What Is Organizational Culture?

How to Measure and Improve the Business Value of IT Service

Ready Technology Trends

Overview of Information Security and Compliance: Seeing the Forest for the Trees

Oracle's Agile Product Lifecycle Management (PLM)

Big Data and Business Analytics

Introduction to the Big Data Era

Big Data Building Blocks to Decision Support

Mining and Analytics in E-Commerce

Healthcare BYOD: What Can Go Wrong?

The Need for a Common Vision

Why Business Analytics?

Building Trust across Boundaries

Communicating across Cultures

Social Teams and Complexity

Understanding Leadership

Leadership, Likeability, and Life

Challenges of Leading in Virtual Organizations

The Ships in the Fleet of Accountability

Big Data and Decision Making

Redefining the Organization with Big Data

Traditional Business Intelligence and Big Data

Search Engine Marketing at Ask.com

Benefits of Open Source Analytics

Social-Based Creativity Development

Understand the "Deal" First

Getting the Most of Networking on LinkedIn

Laws, Privacy, Security, and Social Networking

The BYOD Revolution

The Consumerization of IT

Strategy Management 2.0

Unlocking the Power of High-Performance Analytics

Everyone Knows Everything

The Road to Success in CRM

Dealing with Ethical Failures

Aligning to Manage Ethical Decision-Making: A Checklist for IT Outsourcers

Can You Handle the Truth of IT Today?

A Value Stream Focus within an Enterprise

When Reason, Logic, and Business Cases Fail

What Will You (Really) Be Doing in a Few Years?

Pay Very Close Attention to New Era Skills

From Business Logic to the Decision Model Structure

What is the Decision Model?

Enterprise Architecture: Reinventing the Wheel?

Social Networking: Coping with Data Overload

Key Cloud Strategies: First Steps

Risk Management as a Competitive Advantage

Putting Knowledge Retention into Practice

The New Intelligence: The Birth of the Knowledge Management Industry

What's Your Core IT Competency? Really?

Stretching the IT Budget: Look Beyond the Obvious

Creating IT Road Maps to Manage Complex IT Scenarios

The Top Trends Shaping Analytics


Process and Productivity

Measuring the Effects of Process Improvement on Performance

How to Manage Performance: Kaplan and Norton's Balanced Scorecard

Lean Thinking

What Are Lean, a Lean and Agile Organization, and Lean and Agile IT?

IT Value Streams and Cultural Silos

Lean IT in a Hospital

Learn What to Improve and Why

IT's All about Processes

Defining Processes

Scrum and Social Networking

Lean Management

What Is Six Sigma?

Software Design Challenges

Software Integration

How to Avoid Expectation Collisions

Resource Allocation and the Law of Diminishing Returns

Defining Processes

Process Engineering to Build in Quality and Drive out Waste

Deming's Wisdom in Process Planning

Extracting Business Processes from Applications

Some Common Questions about Scrum

An Overview of System Quality Requirements Engineering (SQUARE)

Maintenance: Who, Why, Where, When and How?

What Does Lean Bring to the Table?

Policy: A Key Element in the Software Engineering Process

Lean in IT: Process versus Practice

Achieving the Right Balance between Process Maturity and Performance

Why Scrum?

Getting Performance From Process Improvement: Part 1— In Search of the Missing Link Between Process and Performance

Getting Performance From Process Improvement: Part 2— What is Process Improvement?

Getting Performance From Process Improvement: Part 3—Improving Performance Through Process Improvement

Why Scrum?

Policy: A Key Element in the Software Engineering Process

Lean in IT: Process versus Practice

Achieving the Right Balance between Process Maturity and Performance

Understanding Lean Concepts


 

Improving Your Own IT Performance
Articles by Nancy Settle-Murphy

Turn Nine Common Virtual Meeting Misconceptions Inside Out

When people evaluate the quality of their typical virtual meetings on a scale of 1-10, the average response we get tends to hover somewhere between 3 and 4. (And that’s progress, compared to a few years ago!) After all this time, why do virtual meetings still have such a bad rap? Are they really that poorly-run, or do people just assume they will be a waste of time, and plan their participation (or lack thereof) accordingly? More...

Using Technology to Transcend Cultural Barriers
My client Jim, a senior leader for a F500 oil company, left this panic-stricken voicemail right after his kick-off meeting to launch a major new global project. I was taken aback, since Jim had proven himself to be a reasonably competent meeting leader. Once we spoke, however, it didn’t take long to figure out what had gone wrong. Coming up with a sustainable remedy, however, took quite a bit more time. More...

Breaking the Wall of Silence in a Virtual World
If you have ever led a virtual meeting, this scenario is familiar: You pose a brilliant provocative question, hoping to trigger a flurry of insightful responses. And instead, you hear….Nothing. Nada. Zippo. Zilch. (Apart from crickets, that is.) So what’s your next step? More...

Don't Leave Remote Participants Hanging: Eight Tips for a Meeting of Equals
Let's face it: It's almost impossible to make remote callers feel like they're on equal footing with people who are gathered in the conference room for the big meeting. But with some thoughtful planning, you can come pretty close. More...

The Real Costs of Persistent Multitasking: Nine Tips to Minimize Damage
Sometimes I feel like I'm the only one who can't concentrate when people around me tap away on their tablets as though no one else at the meeting notices. Do these people even realize how distracting and disrespectful their behavior can be? Or do they just not notice or care? More...

Consensus-Building in Virtual Meetings

Helping teams reach real consensus can be tough enough when we're all in the same room, conversing eye-to-eye. But when people can't see each other's expressions and feel awkward about having tough discussions and candid debates with people they can't see, reaching consensus is infinitely more difficult. Add cultural differences into the mix, and discerning what meeting participants really think about an idea becomes even more difficult. More...

Tips for Picking the Best Tech Tools for Your Next Virtual Meeting

With so many ways to connect virtually, you'd think we'd all be experts by now. In fact, the opposite may be true: Because we have so many choices, finding the best combination of virtual collaboration tools has actually become tougher. And even when we are convinced we've chosen wisely, participants inevitably show up unprepared or unable to make the needed connections easily and quickly. More...

When It Comes to Giving, Little Things Mean a Lot
This is the time of year when we turn our thoughts to giving. But for many of us, that’s where we stop. Just because we have noble intentions, it doesn’t mean we automatically get more time in our busy days to be generous to others, when we’re barely keeping our heads above water ourselves. More...

Turning Around a Truly Terrible Team: Lessons from the 2013 Red Sox

Few teams ever make the leap from the truly awful—sloppy, apathetic, unfocused and disconnected—to the sublime, where members achieve an absolutely stunning performance that leaves everyone else to scratch their heads and ask:"How on earth?" More...

To Keep People Focused, Insist That They Multitask
Are you put off when people tune out during your virtual meetings? I know I am! After all, my clients hire me to run virtual meetings that keep people focused and on track. (And I teach this effective virtual meeting stuff, too!) So when people drift away during my meetings, I realize I need to take a good long look in the mirror to find the true source of the problem. More...

From Jaded to Jazzed: Quick Tips for Sustaining Happy, Healthy Virtual Teams
Have you ever been part of a team where you're inspired and energized by your work, really enjoy the people, feel like you're making some great contributions, and have meaningful opportunities to learn and grow? If you're lucky, maybe it's been once or twice.If you work virtually, attaining this kind of "team nirvana" is even harder. More...

How to Prevent "Unfair" Decisions from Tearing Teams Apart

In the midst of collaborating on a new workshop series to help virtual teams make better decisions, my colleague Sharon Marie May and I had a 'eureka!' moment. Regardless of how rigorous the analysis or relevant the data, if people perceive that a decision was made unfairly, they won't buy into it. This is especially true for virtual teams, who often must make decisions based on partial information and have few opportunities to gather the needed data, validate assumptions or correct misperceptions. More...

Speaking the Truth Is Not Always Easy in a Virtual World
Authentic communication, where we bravely seek and speak the truth, is hard enough when we sit across the table, looking into each other's eyes. In a world where we have no such visual cues to go by, it's far harder to decode what's really being said, what's not being said, and what's behind the words, or silence. More...

Nine Hidden Assumptions that Kill Virtual Collaboration
Why do companies like Best Buy and Yahoo invest so much in creating a flexible work environment in the first place, if they're so willing to discard it later? Bottom line: Many senior leaders just don't trust the concept enough to regard a virtual workplace as an essential component of running their business. And when the virtual workplace concept is seen as expendable, it becomes much easier to dismantle when times get tough. More...

A Line in the Sand Jumpstarts a Virtual Team
with David Kershaw
Virtual teams are hard to see. That's why the boundaries that define the scope, accountabilities, roles, reporting relationships, tasks and deliverables can be pretty tough to grasp. That is, if they exist at all. Why? Some teams simply assume that everyone has a shared understanding of the big picture. If that's true, the thinking goes, then no need to waste time discussing something that goes without saying. More...

A Simple Storyboard Commands Attention and Get Results (Virtually)
with Sheryl Lindsell-Roberts
You're in the process of designing your presentation and creating your meeting agenda. Since you will be leading the meeting from a conference room with several of the senior leaders, with others participating from various locations, you know that a critical success factor will be keeping everyone absorbed, engaged and enthusiastically participating in a productive dialogue. Following are practical approaches for presenting important recommendations that grab and keep peoples' attention, wherever they are. More...

Building Trust Calls for Different Approaches Across Different Cultures
with Caroline Beery and Manuel Heidegger
Celia, Ben's new team leader in Milan, seemed completely committed to delivering a crucial marketing plan on time when they spoke earlier this week. Trouble is, she hasn't. So far, Ben has sent two "friendly" emails, and just now he sent Celia an IM "just to see where we are." Celia's tone has become increasingly cool. Ben is at a loss. He knows that cultures regard punctuality differently and he's aware that Celia may regard him as a micromanager. Still, that marketing plan must be on his VP's desk tomorrow, or his team may lose all of the needed funding. More...

Great Year-Round (Free!) Gifts Everyone on Your Team is Guaranteed to Love
Give a gift every day for 29 days straight? Yeah, right—as if I have the time (and money), with everything I'm already juggling! But that's what a colleague just invited her friends to do. When she explained that such gifts can be as simple as starting a conversation with a downtrodden stranger, making an extra container of soup for a sick neighbor, or even just giving someone your undivided attention for more than five minutes, I was hooked. After all, I wouldn't have to buy anything, and didn't need to put aside much extra time. More...

Tapping the Quiet Power of Introverts in a Virtual World
Think about it: There's zero correlation between being the best talker and having the best ideas. And yet, according to Susan Cain, author of the groundbreaking book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking, our society is overwhelmingly biased toward extroverts. In a world that correlates the strength of an organization’s teamwork to its overall success, the real value of introverts often gets overlooked. More...

Ten Top Tips for Leading Great Lessons Learned Reviews in a Virtual World
with Kathleen Coyle
When run well, a lessons learned review can yield big benefits. It's a great way for team members to discuss how they can capitalize on what they did well so they can do more of it, and to agree on what needs to change for next time. When results are shared beyond the team, lessons learned reviews can also benefit others embarking on similar projects. More...

Nine Ways to Get (and Stay) Virtually Connected on a New Job
with Beverly Winkler
So, you're starting a new job. Or maybe you've just joined a team that's taking on a new long-term project. You're eager to hit the ground running. Naturally, you want to make a great first impression on your new manager by demonstrating your skills, knowledge, and dazzling personality. You also want to get a quick read on your new manager's communication style, values, goals, priorities, likes and dislikes. More...

Structuring Successful Virtual Meetings: A Counterintuitive Approach
with Rick Lent
Wouldn't it be great if all we had to do to run a great virtual meeting is to use the exact same structures and techniques that we use for face-to-face (FTF) meetings? Great for the meeting leader, maybe, but not so great for the meeting participants who have to muster every ounce of energy to just pretend they're engaged. More...

Real Cultural Assimilation Takes Patience, Time and Willingness to Adapt
A colleague recently landed a job for Export Trading Co. LTD, an agro processing company in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, with offices throughout Sub Saharan Africa. I wondered: Is it any easier to become assimilated into a new culture in 2010 than it was for me when I took a temporary assignment in Hong Kong two decades ago? More...

Who Moved My (Virtual) Water Cooler?
Even in the largest global organizations, few virtual teams have regular opportunities for the kind of serendipitous encounters that lead to real a-ha moments and unexpectedly illuminating conversations. In part, that's because many companies have not consciously tried to create mechanisms that mimic the kind of casual conversations that can take place when people see each other frequently. More...

When Workloads Are Seriously Out of Whack: 11 Leadership Tips
Until now, your team has no explicit norms about addressing workload imbalance. Clearly, it's time to create some before people leap across the virtual table in frustration. Where should a virtual leader (or any leader, for that matter) begin? More...

From Bland and Boring to Captivating and Compelling: What Virtual Leaders Must Know
Even the most experienced team leaders can make us weep with boredom. They torture us with their monotone narrations of 10-Mb slide decks. They regale us with irrelevant minutiae, while sidestepping the really important stuff. Their meetings are more like monologues, with everyone else listening from the sidelines. And for the most part, they probably imagine they're pretty interesting people! More...

You'd Be a Great (Virtual) Communicator If Only You Could Just Be Quiet
Quick: What's the number one skill successful virtual leaders must have, which is usually hardest for them to cultivate? If you said "listening," you'd be right. Why it's so important is pretty obvious. Virtual leaders must learn to listen for and interpret an enormous amount of information, within seconds, without benefit of body language or eye contact. And we're not just listening for the words that are (or are not) spoken, but also the tone, pauses, inflections, cadence, lilt, laughter, throat-clearing and perhaps the toughest of all, silence. More...

Far-flung Teams Deserve Fabulous Fanfare
How do you celebrate a major milestone? Maybe you call the troops together to share a pizza, or bring in a jug of coffee and a platter of decadent donuts. But, what if the team is geographically dispersed? When asked how they honor their team's achievements, many virtual team leaders come up empty. Sure, they may send a few congratulatory emails or team IMs. But when it comes to planning a true team-wide celebration, few virtual leaders do this well, if at all. More...

Untangle your Virtual Team with the 10 Most-Needed Norms
Precious few virtual teams have explicit team norms, even for aspects of teamwork where the absence of shared norms can really trip a team up. Excuses include: "When would we have time to talk this through?" "Everyone pretty much knows how we need to work." "We're too busy." And my favorite: "It's too late to go backwards." In this article, I provide 10 "best practices" norms that can do the most to save time, reduce frustration and boost productivity of virtual teams. These examples include specific actions that can support each one. For this piece, I touch on virtual meetings, decision-making, the use of email, shared documents and scheduling, areas for which a lack of explicit norms can cause especially thorny problems for virtual teams. More...

How Virtual Leaders Can Help Others Thrive in a World of Complexity
According to Yves Morieux of the Boston Consulting Group, author of a recent Harvard Business Review article, "Smart Rules: Six Ways to Get People to Solve Problems Without You," the number of procedures, layers, interface structures, and coordination bodies have ballooned to 50-350% over the past 15 years, in a recent study of 100 U.S. and European companies. So with all of this analysis, tracking, reporting and coordinating, how do leaders ever focus on the "real work" that needs to get done. More...

Balance Innovation and Expediency for a Supercharged Team
What's getting lost in our single-minded quest for uber-efficiency is the relative luxury of idle thought, where we take the time to line our gray matter with the seeds of half-formed ideas which, with a little bit of nurturing, can spawn big innovations. To sustain competitive advantage, organizations have to innovate constantly. Easier said than done. That's because thinking creatively takes time and focus, two commodities that are in short supply. More...

When Your Team Is About To Implode, Watch for Signs and Act Fast!
This wasn't just any collapse. This was a whirling vortex, downward spiral, free-fall-at-a-thousand-miles-an-hour. The kind that you never want to open if you're a Boston Red Sox fan. Yes, baseball is only a game and the Red Sox are just an overpaid, underperforming group of players who ceaselessly inflict pain on their sports fans, 2004 and 2007 notwithstanding. Notice, that I did not refer to the 2011 Red Sox as a team. They were a collection of individuals who each seemed to play by his own set of rules and work toward his own goals. In trying to salvage something positive about my home team's shocking demise, I wanted to get a better grip on how and why talented, skilled players can suddenly stumble into oblivion. Here's a checklist of contributing factors, drawn from my client experiences, as well a little web searching. More...

How to Disengage Your Virtual Team in 10 Easy Steps
I'm in the midst of rolling out a new virtual leadership series for a client. We start every series by exploring the three building blocks of successful virtual team leadership (literally, the ABC's): Accelerating Trust, Building Social Capital and Creating a Level Playing Field. One major challenge comes up in every conversation: How to keep virtual team members engaged, enthusiastic, motivated and energized? Rather than writing a bunch of tips to help you engage virtual team members, I thought I'd flip it around and give you tips for disengaging your virtual team members. After all, we can all do with a little fun now and then! More...

Talk Trumps Text for Harnessing Hidden Know-How
Let's say your team, which is scattered across several locations, has to produce a complex, time-consuming proposal, with little time to spare. The team scours the web for relevant content, and they discover that others in your organization have tackled similar proposals. How can they mine this hidden know-how, when they are running out of time, and don't know exactly what to ask, of whom, or how? More...

Overcoming Time and Distance to Stay Connected, Engaged, and Energized
In a world where what was blindly fast is now excruciatingly slow, what was private is now all-too-public, and where meaningful discussions have given way to a stream of 140-character exchanges, a feeling of disconnection has become rampant across the workplace. More...

Essentials for Great Collaboration
As a successful leader of virtual teams, you know you have what it takes to keep the team motivated and focused. Choosing the best combination of tools to enable this team to collaborate and communicate in lockstep—that's your greatest challenge. Fortunately, your company has invested heavily in collaboration tools over the last few years. If anything, your options feel overwhelming. Your team needs to determine which tools will work best, under what conditions, to achieve these ambitious goals, from afar. More...

How to Tilt the Work-Life Balance in Your Favor in a 24x7 World
Is achieving "work-life balance" really possible in an always-on, constantly connected world? When telecommuting and flextime were introduced, the thinking was that busy professionals could adjust their working hours to accommodate other important aspects of their lives. ("It's great—I can coach my kids' soccer games and then hop onto my late-night con calls.") More...

Successful Virtual Collaboration Takes a Lot More Than Just the Right Tools

This article explores what it takes for people to use virtual collaboration tools to their fullest advantage, and conditions need to be in place to foster smarter adoption. Spoiler alert: the technology is the least relevant aspect in the mix. More...

Making Complex Decisions Virtually Without (Much) Pain
Let's face it. We've all made some pretty poor decisions. Sometimes it's because we feel we have to keep moving, in any direction. Other times we just don't want to have to think too hard, so we make the choice that requires the least scrutiny. More...

Virtual Meetings: Design for Worst-Case Scenarios for Best Outcomes
Normally, I ascribe to the 80/20 rule when it comes to planning meetings or designing training. That is, I know I can't possibly predict every single situation that might arise, so I do my best to anticipate what I think will happen 80% of the time for 80% of the participants. More...

For High Impact Global Communications, One Size Never Fits All
This article examines steps that any change leader needs to take in creating and implementing a global communications plan designed to resonate with those most affected by the change. More...

Building Trust Within Virtual Teams: Small Steps Add Up

When we ask clients to name the toughest challenge associated with leading virtual teams, there is one answer that always pops to the top of the list: Building trust. Or in some cases, it's re-building trust. More...

How To Design a Distraction-Proof Meeting
We try to pay more attention during virtual meetings. We really do! But then something diverts our attention (it doesn't take much!) and we find ourselves tuning out, despite our best intentions. More...

Speed Up Time to Successful Transitions by Engaging Your Real Influencers
Let's face it. If you want people to adopt something new, an email from a C-level executive won't do the trick. Neither will a snazzy project web site or a company-wide meeting. More...

Navigating Through the Invisible Tripwires that Cross Up Global Virtual Teams
Some aspects of teamwork tend to suffer more due to cultural differences that are ignored or dismissed. In this article, I highlight some of those aspects which, if successfully addressed, can catapult a global virtual team forward surprisingly fast, once they get through the tough but necessary conversations. More...

Holding Back: A Counter-Intuitive Approach for Virtual Leaders
When they first join a new team, members tend to be energized, motivated, and eager to learn the ropes. Many take pride in finding the information and resources they need to tackle their new assignments and may need just a bit of guidance to keep moving in the right direction. More...

Building Virtual Relationships, One Conversation at a Time
Can you build a trusting relationship when you've never had an actual conversation? (And no, IM, email, text, Twitter and blog "conversations" don't count!) While it may be possible, it's pretty unlikely. More...

Leading vs. Managing Remote Teams
As more organizations work virtually, managers of traditional work teams are tapped to lead geographically dispersed teams. When thrust into this unfamiliar territory, many managers flounder, especially those who rely on command-and-control tactics to get work done across locations, functions, cultures and time zones.
More...

Cultivating Trust from Afar
Today's astonishing economic situation affects virtually every working individual around the globe. As organizations are forced to make drastic cuts and other difficult changes to remain viable, the need for competent, credible, trustworthy leaders has never been greater. More...

How “24x7 Connectivity” Prevents Real Connections
I see more people—colleagues, family and friend—abandon in-person interaction in favor of electronic communications. While it might be more efficient, expedient and less “messy” at times, I am concerned about what this trend will mean to our inclination and ability to have the kind of conversations that foster deep connections. More...

The Keys to Intergenerational Harmony
With multiple generations working side by side for several years now, much has been written about the key differences that affect the ability of multigenerational teams to collaborate successfully. Some organizations have taken this advice to heart and work to consciously reflect these differences when it comes to selecting and cultivating teams. More...


About the Author

Nancy Settle-Murphy, Guided Insights founder and principal consultant, draws on an eclectic and varied combination of skills and expertise. She wears many hats—meeting facilitator, virtual collaboration coach, change management leader, workshop designer, cross-cultural trainer, communications strategist and organizational development consultant.