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How do you manage multi-cultural teams?

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As a manager, you will have to vary your managerial style to suit each individual's needs and find common ground to cope with issues across cultural boundaries. Many successful managers use four-point strategies to tackle problems related to multicultural team management.

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How do you manage multi-cultural teams?

  1. 1. Multi-Cultural Team Management As a manager, you will have to vary your managerial style to suit each individual’s needs and find common ground to cope with issues across cultural boundaries. Some of the challenges faced are: • Cultural differences • Lack of proper communication that leads to misunderstanding of work • Difference of communication styles, working styles and quality of work • Difference in time zones leading to mismatched work coordination How do you as a manager, manage multi-cultural teams? Many successful managers use four-point strategies to tackle problems related to multicultural team management. They are: • Adaption, where open acknowledgement of cultural gaps makes working around it easier • Physical intervention that involves altering the shape of the team • Administrative involvement of top level managers to set rules and regulations early in the project • Exit where a team member is asked to leave if other options have failed The most commonly used methods to deal with multi-cultural teams are: • Identifying conflicting areas of interest and practices for each culture • Coordinating cross-culture training sessions to train team members on various cultures and the style of the region • Generating trust and motivating each team member on the same level, removing hostility and promoting respect and faith amongst multicultural employees of the team • Arranging language classes for non-English speaking employees and vice-versa • Introducing team-building and role-play activities as ice-breakers and encouraging friendly gatherings and discussions outside working hours • Upholding the goal of different people coming together on the project is to work towards completing a project leading to the organization’s and an individual’s success Despite the challenges, there are advantages too, such as: • People from different cultures bring with them an array of creative and innovative experiences and ideas • Multi-cultural teams have the advantage of 24-hour work rotations • Offices across various geographical locations offers employees a chance to work globally offering a different perspective • The multi-cultural team has the potential to address various business issues through diverse problem solving techniques All said and done, working with a cross-cultural team is significantly challenging as the manager must develop strategies to cope not only with differences but also motivate the team to be productive and efficient. Do share your thoughts on the same. To read more such articles, visit http://blog.commlabindia.com/ No.30, II Floor, Sarvasukhi Colony, West Marredpally, Secunderabad – 500 026 INDIA Telephone: 0091–40–27803080 & Fax: 0091–40–27716308 URL: http://www.commlabindia.com Email: info@commlabindia.com

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