- You can effectively lead compassionate and meaningful work virtually. At the end of the day, it’s about remembering some basics of good management. Open communications, staff leadership, supervision, transparency, trust, flexibility are important on and offline.
- We explore how people behave online in relationships that may be problematic, unhealthy, and even abusive - these behaviors and needs for boundaries can be mirrored in the virtual work life as well. When operating virtual meetings, spend time exploring how your team agrees to run meetings or group-agreements if you will (setting healthy boundaries and expectations). If we view virtual meetings the same way we do in-person meetings, without even intending to do so, turning your camera off may signal that you don’t care, are multitasking, or simply bored. To protect your privacy and surroundings, Zoom recently came out with “filters” which is a helpful addition to the platform.
- Planning for online interaction is a key to success. At the office, much of the interaction happens organically--swinging by someone’s office, the small talk that happens before a meeting, the watercooler gossip... At Break the Cycle, our meetings usually start with check-in or an icebreaker. Recently, our staff facilitator announced that we were going to create the Break the Cycle Staff “Feel Good” playlist on Spotify. It showed the depth and breadth of our generations, our music tastes and, in the hard work of the day, gave us some time to laugh.
- Push yourself to unlearn traditional nonprofit ways. The bottom line is that many of the assumptions within our work come from old models of leadership, management, and productivity. Testing a myriad of different online engagement strategies naturally will produce some excellent results. It will also highlight strategies that do not work. Creating an environment where failure is not only expected but embraced creates the kind of climate where staff are motivated to find new, interesting, and relevant solutions. Virtual organizations are uniquely positioned for success in this environment.
Please note: Entries within this blog may contain references to instances of domestic abuse, dating abuse, sexual assault, abuse or harassment. At all times, Break the Cycle encourages readers to take whatever precautions necessary to protect themselves emotionally and psychologically. If you would like to speak with an advocate, please contact a 24/7 peer advocate at 866-331-9474 or text "loveis" to 22522.