Teams work best as all virtual or all together, not both

Trying to create a team where some members are co-located some remote is much more difficult than a purely distributed team. Don’t do it!
Remote-teams require a different organization than co-located teams. Trying to create a team where some members are co-located some remote is thus extremely difficult. Much more difficult than a purely distributed team in fact.

Key Quotes

“teams work best when the team is either virtual or located all together in an office — not both.”

“When a team of people are entirely remote things work. When they are all together, things work. When you try to mix things in with one or two people remote and the majority together, things don’t work as well. The linchpin here is how default communication is conducted. ”

“Here’s why (optimal) teams need to be either one or the other (virtual or not): communication. When I worked remotely … I was one of only a handful of people at head office who worked remotely. While email was essential for company-wide communication, the old “wander by someone’s office” was a big part of how things got done. Those of us who were remote were left out (and had rather large phone bills to expense at the end of the month as well). […] a few months later I was working at my first startup (Qumana) and the entire team was virtual. Where there team or productivity issues being remote? No. Why? Because we all communicated by email, IM, or phone. There was no office where people were. The team was entirely virtual and it worked. “

Teams work best as all virtual or all together, not both by Tris Hussey