Game of Thrones for Remote Teams

Maybe I've been geeking out too much on "Game of Thrones". Seriously, binge-watching Season 3 in a desperate attempt to catch up has impacted my brain. I found myself the other day noticing the similarities between corporate politics and the HBO series. I even came up with a name for it. So how well do you play the "Game of Cubicles"? What does any of this have to do with webmeetings, remote collaboration or project management?

As the leader of a remote team, how often have you found yourself feeling like one of the minor Lords or Dukes of Westeros?

  • All the action is at home office (King's Landing) and you don't much like what you're hearing. Yet you feel you can't do anything about it
  • News comes only occasionally, with short notes tied to ravens (okay, email is a LITTLE better, but not much)
  • People have their own career agendas, which may or may not be known to you. The threats are coming from far away, and you can't see them with your own eyes. You rely on the information you get which may or may not be accurate (White Walkers; Targaryens with dragons; your marketing department's latest lame social media strategy…)

Of course, this is all a matter of perspective. There is far more sex and violence on the series than in the workplace. Yes, there are incidents like The Red Office Party, which is still whispered of to new HR people in hushed, shaking tones. The annual sales meeting (in a good year) resembles a Dothraki victory feast but what happens in The Eyrie stays in The Eyrie, am I right?

The point is, as a minor lordling (or ladyling) out in the provinces it can be tough to maintain good working relationships, not get distracted from the task at hand, and avoid being caught up in intrigue you only partially understand.

So what's a leader to do? Here are some of the ways to wisely play the Game and keep your head while all about you are losing theirs.


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