Posts Tagged ‘distributed’

  • Building an Intentional Culture

    Building an Intentional Culture

    Aug 5, 10 • In Practices

    Distributed organizations can have a team culture every bit as vibrant as their collocated equivalent. All it takes is the conscious effort of the team members, and the willingness to take a little extra time. In collocated teams, corporate culture tends to emerge organically and automacally. Through hallway conversations, Happy Hour outings, and lunchtime chatter friendships are made and the team’s unique spirit emerges. Dispersed teams are not so fortunate. Corporate culture can grow slowly or not at all in the thin soil of remote work. And when culture does develop, it may not be of the healthiest variety: plenty of distributed team veterans can tell stories about distrust, resentment, and miscommunication. What do do? Do we just leave the culture out of work, look at it as “just a job”, and get our camaraderie elsewhere? That’s

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  • Landing a Job on a Wide Team

    Landing a Job on a Wide Team

    Aug 4, 10 • In Basics

    A reader emailed me, asking for advice on finding a job with a dispersed team. While I can’t claim to be an expert on the subject, I’m happy to share what I know. Start a Telework Movement at Your Current Job While I’ve never tried to do this myself, some people are successful lobbying for a telework policy at their current place of a employment. This will only become more common as new government regulations and the financial realities of collocation force more and more organizations to consider the remote option. Be Visibly Awesome For many employers, hiring a remote worker can seem like a risky venture. Employers need assurance that you are worth the risk. That’s why I recommend that you start your job search at home, by picking a niche that you love

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  • Wide Teams Podcast, Episode 8: Interview with Loren Johnson

    Wide Teams Podcast, Episode 8: Interview with Loren Johnson

    Aug 2, 10 • In Interviews, Podcast

    Today’s interview is with Loren Johnson, a Ruby on Rails developer and a remote worker for most of his career. I talked to Loren at RailsConf 2010 about some of the tradeoffs involved when choosing to live and work in a geographically isolated area, and the challenges of being the sole remote worker on a team

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  • Wide Teams Podcast Episode 7: BohConf Roundtable Part 2

    Wide Teams Podcast Episode 7: BohConf Roundtable Part 2

    Jul 26, 10 • In Podcast

    This episode features the conclusion of a roundtable about dispersed teams held at BohConf, an unconference held within RailsConf 2010. In this part, the participants talk about video conferencing, balancing team collaboration time with solo work, optimizing virtual meetings, meeting deadlines, finding talent for their teams, and much more

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  • Wide Links #6

    Wide Links #6

    Jul 23, 10 • In Links

    Links about dispersed teams, from around the web. In this edition: coworking from home; evaluating Google Wave; questions to ask a potential remote employer; planning a virtual meeting; and more

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  • Wide Teams Podcast #6: BohConf Roundtable Part 1

    Wide Teams Podcast #6: BohConf Roundtable Part 1

    Jul 19, 10 • In Podcast

    Today on the podcast, a recording of a roundtable discussion held at the BohConf unconference inside of RailsConf 2010. Topcs covered include teleconferencing practices, why instant messaging can be an antipattern, and different strategies for estimating work

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  • Wide Links #5

    Wide Links #5

    Jul 16, 10 • In Links

    In this edition: the US House approves a bill mandating more telework in government agencies; how to hire a remote worker; tools for distributed software teams; making the most of your coworking space, and more! Work Shifting – Lessons Learned From Workshifting tags: wideteams Hiring Remote Workers: 5 Red Flags To Never Ignore | oDesk.com – Annotated tags: hiring remote wideteams People are usually on their best behavior when trying to land a job, so what you observe in the interview phase of the relationship with your freelancer is probably as good as it gets. If a candidate seems difficult to reach, it’s probably because she is.   Use Your Web Advantage to Survive Busy Periods – Annotated tags: wideteams Giving colleagues access to your electronic calendar can also reduce the number of meeting invitations and task

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  • The Wide Teams Bootstrap Guide, Part 4: Virtual Presence

    The Wide Teams Bootstrap Guide, Part 4: Virtual Presence

    Jul 14, 10 • In Basics

    You have your mail hub, your video/audio chat solution, and your text chat service set up. What other communications tools does your distributed team need? To augment Campfire or IRC, I recommend setting up a team status/presence tool.  The two most popular tools occupying this space are Presently and Yammer. With the exception of some downtime issues, I’ve had good luck with Present.ly in several organizations. In a nutshell, these apps are like Twitter for private groups.They enable team members to post short messages about their status, what they are thinking about, or problems they are experiencing. You may be wondering: is such an app really necessary when you already have a chat application?  Don’t they overlap? It’s true, either a chat room or a presence app can be used to simulate the other.  But ideally, they handle two

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  • Wide Links #4

    Wide Links #4

    Jul 9, 10 • In Links

    Notes on dispersed teams, from around the web. Today: Inc. magazine goes remote; studies show “vritual” teams can match or outperform collocated ones; and the latest in bathrobe fashion. The Federal Coach: Rethinking the workplace in the 21st century – Tom Fox – Annotated tags: wideteams Yet, with the ever-increasing demands on government, leaders must learn to adapt to the new century and start rethinking when, how and where work is done. The bottom line is simple: it’s not where you are, but what gets accomplished that counts.   Telecommuting’s Win-Win-Win-Win..Etc. | Triple Pundit: People, Planet, Profit – Annotated tags: wideteams As a new white paper (PDF) from the Telework Research Network (TRN) reports, workshifting is good for People: 70 percent of workers would like to be able to work from home at least some

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  • Wide Teams are Stagnant Teams

    Wide Teams are Stagnant Teams

    Jul 8, 10 • In Experiences, Opinion

    Distributed sucks.  Human interaction is far better than virtual, all the more so for teams of any significant size.  I have worked with successful distributed and local teams.  The local teams were far superior in their ability to improve.  I much prefer the lifestyle afforded by distributed teams.  But that lifestyle comes at a significant cost that today’s tools cannot even begin to mitigate.   Editors note: Wide Teams is about more than just advocacy for dispersed teams. One of the reasons this site exists is to foster a robust conversation about all aspects of remote work – including the very real challenges involved. In order to get a critical perspective on distributed work, I asked my friend, former coworker, and fellow blogger Chris Strom to write this guest article. As someone who has managed

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