Being in a team that is situated in 2 countries, Melbourne and Singapore, with a 3 hours time difference definitely has its pros and cons. Not to mention the difference in culture, there will always be challenges along the way. After working within such a team for quite some time, I have realized a few points which I found to be subtle yet crucial to having a strong relationship within your own team and colleagues.
Face-to-face communication always makes things much easier and ideas better conveyed. However, its a near impossible challenge to jump on a plane regularly just to have concrete discussions within the Beacon New team. Nowadays, with Skype and project management apps (yes, we’ve tried basecamp), virtual communication is quicker and easier than ever.
Transparency & Clarity
Sharing documents and files is largely part of all businesses. Cloud based file-hosting services like Dropbox replaces the need for a physical shared server in the office. A month ago, we introduced weekly Work-In-Progress (WIP) meetings vis Skype to help everyone stay on track and to be clear on all projects.
Striking a Balance
With all the technology involved and the absence of face-to-face communication, emotions are usually more difficult to convey and words typed may seemed harsher than intended to. With the use of video calls such as Skype or Face Time may help with the maintenance of a cohesive team relationship.
Min Ru Heng is the Marketing Project Manager of Beacon New Ventures, a new model marketing & venture capital partner currently expanding its footprint in the Asia Pacific region. With an office based in Singapore and another in Melbourne Australia, the business has a broad client portfolio both local and abroad across various categories.