Managing virtual teams online: How a startup finds its real capital that we have identified our work process as particularly noteworthy, we naturally also provide you with our know-how on building international teams that can collaborate digitally and highly effectively.

The QLab idea

One company, one question, let five students from all over the world work on it for five weeks - that was the idea for our think tank.

Not knowing if this would work, we started activating our network to find students interested in environmental and sustainability topics. These students not only had to have time, but they also had to be exceptionally good at their subjects. Because of the pandemic, they also had to be able to work on their laptops all day.

We also set even more complex conditions. We decided that students must have different backgrounds and come from all over the world. Our goal was to prevent our solutions from being viewed only from a Eurocentric perspective. Ideally, we wanted to have as many nationalities, continents, and disciplines represented in our teams as possible.

Then there were our customers, the companies. They had to be willing to work with us on their digital challenge and be eager to get involved in the process. They also had to be interested in openly discussing the students' ideas to find valuable conclusions.

It's no easy task to get a project team like this to work, is it?

Getting an international team to work according to design thinking principles didn't seem to make much sense to us. What others might have found remarkable was a matter of course for us. Initially, we were more of the opinion that the result had to stand out.

They did, but it was only over time that we realized that the actual achievement of our work was to bring these teams together and enable them to consult experts from all over the world to find an original solution for our customers. Today we know this: the answer is of great value, but our real asset is the knowledge of how to lead such a team to success.

Anyone who knows us, Andrea Kuhfuss and Boris Gloger, knows that agile methods must be in play. But we have understood even more clearly in our first year at QLab that trust, leadership, and exchange are the actual keys to success.

Daily meetings, reviews, and retrospectives are beneficial in this process. But only Andrea's unique way of challenging the teams, keeping them focused, and the business insights I (Boris) occasionally added, allowed the students to become truly outstanding teams.

The feedback from our participants is exceptional. Sentences include, "We learned as much in the few weeks here as we did in our entire bachelor's program." Patrick decided to work with us instead of starting his master's degree.

You rarely appreciate what comes easily to you.

It took us some time to realize that. But now that we have recognized our work process as particularly remarkable, we are making our know-how available to you on how to build international teams that can work together digitally and highly efficiently.

If you want to learn more about this work process, read our articles or attend one of our events. We will write more about this topic in the coming weeks and organize events to share our findings.

Boris Gloger, co-founder and managing director of QLab Think Tank GmbH

Design Thinking Method Training

Online Workshop | QLab Think Tank GmbH

Language: German

Price: €450,- (€150,- for students)

November 22, 2023
09:30 - 17:30

Casino Futur, Bremen

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