The paper "The Rise in New Media Technologies " is a great example of management coursework. The rise in new media technologies has meant that these media are increasingly being used in management. Virtual teams are increasing in popularity since they ease the connection of persons across space and time. With increased globalization information needs to be transferred and shared between different professionals and the use of virtual teams is critical. This paper analyzes virtual teams and the theories which underlie their effective operation. Through an analysis of academic literature, the paper defines and discusses the concept of virtual teams.
It discusses the importance of different theories of communication and how they impact trust in teams. It also discusses the theories underlying leadership such as Behavioral Complexity theory and how this ought to be harnessed for more effective outcomes. A critical reflection of the different aspects of a case study is then undertaken. Lastly, it offers recommendations for future practice in virtual teams. Discussion of Academic Literature The introduction of computer-mediated technologies has resulted in the rise of virtual teams. There are many theories which explain the working of virtual teams especially with regard to leadership and trust in teams.
Challenges and benefits which are presented by teamwork are also an important part to be taken into account. A virtual team refers to the coming together of employees working interdependently across space and time through technological means such as email, teleconferencing, webinars, wikis among others (Lipnack & Stamps, 2010). The theories aim to explain the instance of challenges and benefits of virtual teams. Virtual teams are afforded access to specialized expertise and therefore solutions and decisions made are likely to be better informed and creative.
Communication delays and a lack of face to face interaction may result in conflict in virtual teams. Media Richness & Social Presence theories and Social Information Processing & Social Identification/Deindividualization are competing for trust theories. The previous asserts that computer-based communication does not contain non-verbal cues which are critical in the communication of aspects of interpersonal affections, attentiveness, trust, warmth among others (Zofi, 2011). The latter asserts that computer-mediated communication is not deficient relative to face to face communication in terms of social information exchange but rather that it may transfer the information at a slower rate.
However, scholarly research supported the ideas of SIP and SIDE theories. The establishment of the trust is a critical component of virtual teams and hence ought to be taken into account. Successful virtual teams are based on the development and creation of relationships that result in shared views and enhance trust. The team performance model offers an effective means of building relationships through a macro analysis and explanation of the stages crucial to the building of the teams (Jones et al, 2005).
Trust is established through identification and a sense of belonging through shared similarities. Identification is built through motivation and uncertainty reduction techniques like clarification of roles, high levels of responsiveness, and striving to understand each other. Established team practice such as discussion routines, clearly defined goals, accountability and positive feedback are important (Malone, 2004). Leadership is a critical component of virtual teams since leaders resolve conflicts and direct the team towards the achievement of objectives. According to the Behavioral Complexity Theory effective leadership is a function of the capacity of the manager to respond and resolve a range of organization circumstances through performing a range of leadership functions concurrently (DeRosa & Lepsinger, 2010).
Skills and competencies such as responsiveness, clarification of roles, communication, assertiveness and understanding are critical in supporting the virtual team. Leadership also has to ensure that trust is maintained among members, manage and supervise progress and ensure the process is mutually beneficial for all members.