The Surprising Traits of Good Remote Leaders
New data shows that “the confidence, intelligence and extroversion that have long propelled ambitious workers into the executive suite are not enough online because they simply don’t translate into virtual leadership,” writes Arianna Cohen via the BBC. “Instead, workers who are organized, dependable and productive take the reins of virtual teams.” From the report: The study, published in the Journal of Business and Psychology, tracked 220 US-based teams to see which team members emerged as leaders across in-person, virtual and hybrid groups. The researchers conducted a series of in-lab experiments with 86 four-person teams, and also traced the communications and experiences of 134 teams doing a semester-long project in a university class (students are commonly used as proxy for workers in leadership research). The study was carried out pre-pandemic, focusing on emergent leaders: those perceived as leaders, and whose influence is willingly accepted.

As expected, the face-to-face teams chose leaders with the same confident, magnetic, smart-seeming extroverted traits that we often see in organizational leaders. But those chosen as remote leaders were doers, who tended towards planning, connecting teammates with help and resources, keeping an eye on upcoming tasks and, most importantly, getting things done. These leaders were goal-focused, productive, dependable and helpful. In other words, virtually, the emphasis shifts from saying to doing. This discovery is timely, as most of our workplace in-person teams are now all or partially digital operations in the wake of the pandemic.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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