Other Ways to Promote Team Effectiveness
Explain Team Roles
If team members are globally dispersed, it can be easy to forget about people located far away. It's important, at the beginning of a project, to explain to all team members who everyone is and what their role is. Through knowing what everyone contributes and the roles on the team, everyone can begin to understand how they should be interacting.
It can be easy to not include a team member, particularly if time differences make good excuses. There are always ways around these difficulties (such as finding a mutually acceptable time to hold calls) and it is up to the project manager to demonstrate that excuses are not acceptable.
Sometimes feelings of "Them and Us" can begin to form when teams do not really know distant members of a team. It is better to address the situation well before it begins to form by demonstrating that all the team shares a common goal. Differences, such as language and culture, can quickly be accommodated once people know each other.
Promote Team Effectiveness with Gantt Charts
Gantt Charts are a way of visually presenting team progress. While it is often the project manager's domain to produce and update Gantt Charts, they are also a useful tool for a team to understand progress as well as dependencies. When part of a team, it is important to realize that others are dependent on you and that you are a part of a larger piece of work. Having the project's Gantt charts available to all the team helps everyone know where the project is currently at, understand upcoming tasks, and know the key activities that the project is dependent upon.