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Managing virtual project teams
Managing virtual project teams

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Managing virtual project teams


There are important differences between projects and operations, and managing and leading people within projects is different from managing and leading people within operations.

The project manager uses communication skills to provide leadership, and needs to understand the dynamics of team development to resolve conflict within the team. The manager cannot micromanage the project and so must delegate effectively. The manager must also master negotiation and influencing skills to maintain the commitment of all the stakeholders in the project. (APM, 2012).

The project manager might be in a position to create or change a team structure to suit the needs of the project, but the possibility of doing so in itself depends on the constraints imposed by the organisation running the project or by the client who has commissioned the project. Another major factor in how the project team works together is whether they are collocated or not. Virtual teams are increasingly common, where either some or all of the team members are at a distance geographically or, even if some are collocated, there may be variations in working times, so that the work on the project can proceed in different times and at different places.

This free course, Managing virtual project teams, considers how project teams should be established and then considers the techniques needed to manage teams that are not collocated.

This OpenLearn course is an extract from the Open University course M815 Project Management [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] . You might also be interested in the OpenLearn course Project governance and Project Management Office (PMO), which looks at the roles and responsibilities in effective project governance and how this can be supported by a project management office.