This assignment is to respond to another student’s Discussion Board Post. Here are the instructions when responding:
Your replies must be typed in separate Microsoft Word documents. Your replies must include meaningful and substantive contributions to the discussion. Each reply must be 200–300 words. Include a reference page, and be sure to have in-text citations for the following sources:
- At least 1 citation from Mello (2019).
- At least 1 citation from Hardy (1990).
- At least 1 citation from a related scholarly journal.
^^ Here is the students original post that you are responding to:
The implementation of telework programs, or allowing employees to work from remote locations, often at their home, continues to increase in popularity. Advances in technology, especially in telecommunications and internet connectivity, in conjunction with the transition to a more knowledge-based economy have supported the adaptation of telework (Kaplan, Engelsted, Lei, & Lockwood, 2018). Telework provides many benefits to organizations and employees, including: reducing commuting and its environmental impact, improving employee retention by providing work flexibility, reducing the need to relocate employees, improving the ability to recruit by broadening the applicant pool for key positions, reducing real estate costs, increasing productivity, lowering stress levels and improving loyalty (Mello, 2019). However, this practice introduces new challenges for human resource development, including creating an effective performance measurement system, deciding which positions and employees are eligible to participate in telework programs, the expense required for providing remote equipment for employee use, and training for the supporting managers of remote employees (Mello, 2019).
There is much in the literature concerning the implementation of telework both domestically and internationally. However, there are few case studies involving the training and support for managers with remote employees. Schmidt (2014) notes that the skills successful in leading traditional co-located teams are not consistently effective in the virtual environment. Specifically, there is some indication that the use of occasional face-to-face meetings may encourage the development of trust between employers and remote employees and within project teams. Kaplan, Engelsted, Lei, and Lockwood (2018), showed that employers will often deny an employee the opportunity to telework, even if the employee has requested it, the job fits telework, and the organization supports it if they lack significant trust in their employee.
While current literature addresses the importance of leadership and team development on project success, studies addressing the non-traditional approaches required for virtual team leadership is still developing. Incorporating periodic face-to-face meetings can have a positive effect on building cohesive and high-performing teams. Rhoads (2010) found that periodic face-to-face meetings offer a richness of cues that can positively affect both communication and trust.
This author suggests conducting a phenomenological, qualitative study exploring the lived experiences of virtual project teams that incorporate periodic face-to-face meetings to examine its effect on trust and communication. This study will add to the body of knowledge by describing how managers and human resources departments support teleworking employees and describe the strategies they employ, including the utilization of periodic face-to-face meetings. Ultimately, this knowledge may be used to improve human resource development prepare managers to support teleworking employees, thus improving their performance and the probability of success.
God calls us to work in order to love our neighbor, and we should support employees to achieve this calling (Hardy, 1990). By providing employees to telework, we are often offering them a path to achieve a greater work-life balance that gives them the opportunity to serve their neighbors: their family, church, and community, as well as their employer. While many argue that this focus may hinder overall profitability, there is much evidence that focusing on employees actually improves the bottom line (Hardy, 1990). Paul tells Christians to “Work with enthusiasm, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.” (Ephesians 6:7, NLV). Keller and Alsdorf (2016) point out that Christian employers are to clear the path for their employees and “take an interest in them as people and invest in their whole lives, not just their productive work capacity” (p. 223). Offering the opportunity to work remotely is one way employers can support the full lives of their employees. However, Peters, Ligthart, Bardoel, and Poutsma (2016) warn that companies need to beware of the possible negative implications for its teleworking employees, including work intensification and enhanced stress, and ensure they find ways to minimize these potential teleworking pitfalls for their employees.
Hardy, L. (1990). The fabric of this world: Inquiries into calling, career choice, and the design of human work. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
Kaplan, S., Engelsted, L., Lei, X., & Lockwood, K. (2018). Unpackaging manager mistrust in allowing telework: Comparing and integrating theoretical perspectives. Journal of Business and Psychology, 33(3), 365-382. doi:10.1007/s10869-017-9498-5
Keller, T., & Alsdorf, K. L. (2016). Every good endeavor: Connecting your work to Gods work. New York: Penguin Books.
Mello, J. (2019). Strategic human resource management (5thed.). Mason, OH: South-Western.
Peters, P., Ligthart, P. E. M., Bardoel, A., & Poutsma, E. (2016). ‘Fit’ for telework’? Cross-cultural variance and task-control explanations in organizations’ formal telework practices. The International Journal of Human Resource Management, 27(21), 2582-2603. doi:10.1080/09585192.2016.1232294
Rhoads, M. (2010). Face-to-face and computer-mediated communication: what does theory tell us and what have we learned so far? Journal of Planning, 25(2), 111-122. doi:10.1177/0885412210382984
Schmidt, G. (2014). Virtual leadership: An important leadership context. Industrial and Organizational Psychology, 7(2), 182-187. doi:10.1111/iops.12129