Building effective virtual teams: How to overcome the problems of trust and identity in virtual teams



This article explores some of the challenges faced when managing virtual teams, in particular the role played by trust and identity in virtual teams. It outlines why teams and virtual teams have become a valuable part of the modern organization and presents ten short case studies that illustrate the range of activities in which virtual teams can be found. Following this, the article examines some of the common problems encountered in virtual team working. It discusses two broad classes of solutions. The first are solutions that are essentially technical in nature (i.e., where changes to or improvements in technology would help to solve or ameliorate the problem); the second are more organizationally based (i.e., where the root of the problem is in people and how they are managed). The article concludes that both the technical and the organizational solutions need to be considered in parallel if an attempt to build an effective virtual team is to be successful. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.