Charles Good discusses time management techniques

Before the COVID-19, approximately 20% of the workforce was working from home according to the survey conducted in 2020 by Pew Research Center. As a result of the pandemic, we have seen this grow exponentially throughout our economy. JLL’s “Reimagining Human Experience” report surveyed thousands of global workers and revealed that nearly two-thirds of surveyed expect to work in a hybrid model moving forward. Leaders are now leading from anywhere as they and their teams adapt to a remote or hybrid work model.

In a recent IMS program, Dr. David Burkus, author of Leading from Anywhere: The Essential Guide to Managing Remote Teams, provided attendees with specific insights, tools, and techniques to lead from anywhere. He urges leaders to adopt some guidelines with their virtual and hybrid teams, such as the following:

  • Encourage a shared understanding by making it comfortable for self-disclosure.
  • Establish a strong, unified identity by appealing to your team’s goals.
  • Develop a shared purpose by answering, “What are we fighting for?”

Next, leading from anywhere still requires two types of communication: asynchronous and synchronous. In most situations, asynchronous communication should still be the rule and synchronous the exception. One of the many benefits of remote work is the opportunities for long stretches of uninterrupted time to focus on tasks that create value. However, if remote team members are always expected to be ‘on call’ and communicating, that benefit quickly goes away. The following are some tips for communication for remote teams.

  • The expectation should be that team members will not respond immediately.
  • Write clearly and concisely since text communication will likely be the dominant form. Favor simple sentence structure and keep your language as concise as possible.
  • Infuse positivity in your writing and assume positive intent when reading messages from others.
  • Voice first, video later. Audio calls are typically shorter in duration, and it allows us to better interpret what is being said when we only have one mode of communication.
  • Provide a virtual water cooler. Employees are no longer meeting in the office break room or at the water cooler. However, they still need time during each day to connect and disconnect from their work.

Finally, we have burnout. These days leading from anywhere means working non-stop. Many leaders are working longer and harder than ever, as the lines have been blurred between work and home. Fortunately, this trend can be reversed by developing a few disciplines.

  • Set business hours. 
  • Develop an after-work ritual signaling it is time to end the day.
  • Change devices when you change modes.

In a recent article I wrote on September 14, 2021, I delved into other critical areas of team dynamics in a virtual world. I stressed the importance of getting consensus on how decisions get made when everyone is not in the same room or working the same hours. I also shared some techniques and strategies from IMS Educator Dr. Ellen Burts Cooper, author of aMAZEing Organizational Teams, on improving team dynamics to build high-performance teams.

Don’t forget to celebrate remote and hybrid team success and remember what TEAM stands for – Together Everyone Achieves More.


Charles Good is the president of The Institute for Management Studies, which provides transformational learning experiences that drive behavioral change and develop exceptional leaders. Charles is an innovative and resourceful leader who specializes in bringing people together to develop creative organizational and talent strategies that enable business results. His areas of expertise include assessing organizational skill gaps and leading the design, creation and delivery of high impact, innovative learning solutions that achieve business goals.

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