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Assignment Questions

Virtual Team Management

Part A
You are managing a large virtual team of 300 individuals located across the globe. These individuals are all volunteers, each contributing on average about 5-10 hours per week to the project. The project goal is to develop a set of recommendations for regulating carbon emissions around the world.
i) What would be the best way to structure this large virtual team?

ii) List the three most important issues that you foresee in managing this team. How would you solve these issues?

iii) What would you do to motivate these individuals so that they continue contributing towards achieving the project goal?

Part B
You are managing a small cross-functional project team of 15 individuals (including yourself) in a pharmaceutical company. The team composition is:
Three pharmaceutical chemists
Four pharmaceutical lab technicians
Three medical doctors
Two lawyers
Two medical editors
The project goal is to develop safety standards to be observed in the genetic engineering laboratories of the company within a 6-week period. The cross-functional individuals involved in this project have different qualifications, experiences, and professional orientations. They have different and sometimes conflicting goals. For example, the lawyers may try to frame standards in such a way that the pharmaceutical company is immune to lawsuits. The doctors may be concerned primarily with the health and safety of the workers. The pharmaceutical chemists and lab technicians may want to get their work done most efficiently, while the medical editors may want to devise standards in such a manner that they are easily understandable.

i) How will you align the interests of various individuals in the cross-functional team so that despite their professional backgrounds and possibly competing agendas, they work to develop the safety standards on time?

ii) What problems do you foresee in the achievement of the project goal due to the fact that the team is cross-functional?

iii) From the behavioural standpoint, name and describe three benefits do you see for the cross-functional team?
iv) What are the structural and behavioural challenges in managing the cross-functional team?

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