From an early age, Manuel Pistner dreamt of becoming an independent entrepreneur. He started his first company in 2006. It has since grown to over 150 freelancers worldwide. As you can imagine, it was not an easy road to get there. Manuel’s unique business model, however, streamlined the process. His company, Bright Solutions, is a virtual team of freelancers. As a result, they each bring unique skills to complex projects. Consequently, this eliminates barriers that many static organizations cannot breach. Of course hiring freelancers often poses many of the same talent acquisition challenges as hiring full-time employees. Manuel utilizes different business management systems to maintain control and transparency within his organization. This ensures that everything gets done. It’s also means he has a clear understanding of how to best go virtual in the COVID-19 crisis.
Three Steps to Managing a Virtual Team
Managing over 150 people in 67 different countries might seem like a nightmare for many entrepreneurs. Manuel’s system, however, is tried and true. According to him, there are three things that need to be in alignment if your virtual team is to operate at maximum capacity.
Provide each team member with a detailed description of their role to hold them accountable.
Ensure clarity around how each team member should collaborate.
Provide each team member with the necessary tools to support your workflows.
This simple process has enabled Manuel to scale his business successfully. He did so while working remotely with people he has never met! You can apply these same methods in your own company as well. This is vital, especially during this COVID-19 crisis.
Working Remote in the COVID-19 Crisis
As the COVID-19 crisis takes hold, more and more teams are forced to go virtual. However, these teams are not hired or trained to operate on their own accord. As a result, there are a lot of challenges posed by this large scale transition.
Manuel provides some tips that might help ease the tension as things fall into place. First, make a designated work area where you won’t be interrupted or distracted. Next, you should structure your workday to avoid over-communication or panic. In addition, leaders must lead by output and not by availability.
All of these best practices will help your team manage their time, output, and communication. This is essential as they adjust to their new work environments. These tools will help you push through these difficult times and weather the COVID-19 crisis with success. Listen to the full episode here!
Corey Kupfer is an expert strategist, negotiator and dealmaker with more than 30 years of professional deal-making and negotiating experience. He is a successful entrepreneur, attorney, consultant, author and professional speaker who is passionate about deal-driven growth. He is also the creator and host of the Fueling Deals Podcast.
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