Assignment states that most of the virtual team fails and all the virtual teams fail because of poor communication plan

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In the present business world, the globalization have revolutionized the organizational way of functioning, in which the virtual work scenario is becoming popular at a rapid speed. The driving force that bridges all the team member and motivate them towards the attainment of organizational objectives, is the best communication practices. The learning from previous case studies have suggested that, improper communication within a virtual team is the key factor responsible for generation of chaotic situation, which in turn leads to project failure. The objective of this report is to create a communication plan, which can be implemented for any virtual team, to bring effectiveness in overall functioning. 

The main outline of implementing an effective communication plan for a virtual team is:

Conducting an audit on the current communication process.

Involving the entire team, and considering the suggestions from all directions while creating the communication plan. 

Choosing the most appropriate communication tools.

Effective stakeholder management within the scope of communication plan; and

Documentation of the communication plan. 

According to a report by Christensen (2014), it is highly essential to audit the current communication process, based on which further implementation could be possible. Critical analysis in this context should be focused on segments such as the mode of communication used (oral, written, meeting, presentation, and conferences); the tools used (telephone, email, internet sources, messengers); and most importantly the upward or downward direction of communication flow in the virtual team. Another important factor as determined by Purvanova (2014) for virtual teams, is that there is lack of face-to-face communication and hands it is highly essential to implement measures with which all the members could be active and as possible. This includes, periodic calls, webinars, annual meetings and virtual meetings. Importantly, it is also critical to include the suggestions and favorable communication mechanism suitable to the team members. This is highly important as because the virtual team members are separated by virtue of geographical distribution, different time zones, and various cultural diversity factors.

Apart from the internal measures, it is also important to consider the stakeholders such as contractors, vendors, external developers, third party funding agencies and customers. Since, the stakeholders consideration is highly influential on the overall progress of project; it is important to consider to identify the phases in which day should be in world and the tools with which they are accessible. While ensuring that the communication tools must not compromise the quality of project communication, the useful tools include email, web conferencing, webinars, and VoIP.

As suggested by Driedonks (2014), the lack of power related to the direction communication, is the critical factor responsible for maximal failure in the achievement of functional success of virtual teams. Thus, it is important implement useful mechanism of monitoring and assessment. According to Hair Jr (2015), the most mandatory communication planning requirement is the documentation of the implemented plan. For instance, the formal communication can be documented with a simple flowchart so just explain the communication process. This will be helpful in explicit description for both downward and upward communication processes. In contrary, the informal communication require monitoring and prevention as per the situational context. There should be developed guidelines and policies for informal communication through telephone, email, and messengers. 

Lastly while implementing the plan, a service-level agreement must be defined to all the team members. This is important because to make sure that every team member is aware of the communication plan. Duh, the team member will be aware of how the operon downward communication flow works, and that the members can ensure about the communication plan utility.

It is learned from available literature that most of the virtual team fails. However, it is important to note that not all the virtual teams fail because of poor communication plan. Most of the reasons are also linked with leadership capabilities, lack of clear directionality and goals, lack of cooperation, and lack of proper engagement. According to a report by Austin (2015), it should be noted that an effective communication plan, ensure the opportunity to link all these loopholes and attain the success. For example, an effective leader, can implement follow-up communication with the team members such as to translate and receive critical information required to complete the project. Meanwhile, the communication plan will determine the most effective tool to be used for transmitting and retrieval of information; there are also a requirement related to framing policies and guidelines four ethical and proper uses of these communication tools. Important questions to be analyzed in this context are, how to measure the effectiveness of a communication tool? More importantly, why do companies have not focused on improvement of communication tool despite of the fact that majority of virtual teams to achieve organizational objectives?

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