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Virtual Leadership:
Secrets from the Round Table for the Multi-Site Manager

by John C. Maxwell

Harper Perennial, 320 pages, $10.28

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Technological advances help managers to communicate and delegate faster and easier, but the “virtual world” can have adverse effects on keeping teams running smoothly. Virtual Leadership is designed to speak to multi-site managers with team members in diverse locations. Told as instructional fiction, the book’s style is both engaging and informative. Many of its lessons and techniques apply to any manager looking to keep in step with current trends and practices

Physical separation is a reality in today’s working world. Professionals travel extensively, they work from home, and floors separate people within offices. Often, managers view the Internet, e-mail, and voicemail as adequate solutions to combat this isolation. They neglect to integrate the human element into their business strategies. Kostner’s remedies help restore this element so that separated teams run smoothly and efficiently.

The story begins with a manager finding a strange coin and wishing that it could help him bridge the gap between his team members. Comparing the manager’s modern day project to King Arthur constructing Camelot, he learns lessons that include how to:

  • Establish Trust and Unite People Who Don’t Share a Common Work Space
  • Leverage Resources Across Distance
  • Use Technology as the Bridge Across Your Team’s Physical (and Emotional) Distances

Virtual Leadership incorporates objects and icons to illustrate key points, which allows managers to recall and implement the information. It’s especially effective to give to dispersed team members so everyone can learn these communication techniques. Whether you are seeking to establish a virtual team or to manage one, Kostner’s insights are relevant and valuable.



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