A good friend of mine is a recruiter for a high-tech firm in Silicon Valley. Over dinner recently, we chatted about the global nature of the work we do.
Marsha mentioned that one of her favorite partners is based in Latin America and, while he conducts his business from there, his primary client base is right here in Silicon Valley.
It's clear that companies of all shapes and sizes now find themselves playing on the global stage.
Challenges of Global Team Building One of my proudest moments came in 2007 when I was given the green light to build a global training team for Mandel Communications.
Along with the energy and excitement of working with colleagues around the world came the challenges of team building and communicating across time zones, languages, and cultures.
In her HBR article, "The Attributes of an Effective Global Leader," Sylvia Ann Hewlett named COMMUNICATION a key attribute for effective global leadership. That resonated with my own experience building global teams and collaborating with global team members.
This week, I’d like to share what we at Mandel have learned in the past 10+ years about how to communicate effectively on a global scale.
Top 3 Global Leadership Communication Tips
1) Know your audience!While this is vital to any type of communication, it’s especially critical when communicating as a global leader.
Learn all you can about protocol and ways of doing business in the various parts of the world where you and your team members will be working. Ask lots of questions.
Whenever possible, make a trip to meet in person. Observe. Listen. Observe some more. Talk with colleagues who also work with global teams and learn from their experiences (and mistakes!) too.
2) Build individual relationships with team members.While general information about cultural variables is widely available, never forget that individuals are individuals, wherever they reside.
Make a trip to meet in person! Nothing can match the value of meeting people on their home turf and learning from them as you see them at work.
Your colleagues may travel to corporate headquarters occasionally. Take advantage of those opportunities, too, to continue building relationships.
3) Level the communications playing field.One thing that has amazed me as I’ve watched global teams at work is how frequently “corporate headquarters” dictates the time and format for global team meetings.
When scheduling your meetings, keep in mind that 2:00pm HQ time translates to 2:30am in Bangalore! Vary the time of your meetings, so that everyone feels their needs are being considered.
In addition to varying the time of meetings, vary the format. Invite members of the team to facilitate meetings on a rotating basis. Use video whenever you can. Meet “face to face” whenever possible. (Do you see a theme here?)
Agree on the rules of engagement for meetings, e.g., How can you ensure that quieter voices are heard? And create a feedback loop, so you know what’s working and what needs improvement.
Finally, implement a standard communication framework to ensure that ideas are clearly communicated, goals are well-defined, and the right decisions get made. Mandel’s SCIPAB® method, for example, can be a powerful tool for enhancing the productivity and impact of meetings.
Team Building Doesn't Happen By AccidentOf all the experiences I’ve had in my career, building a committed, loyal, high-performing global team has been the most rewarding.
It doesn’t happen by accident. It takes time, effort, and a willingness to do things in new and different ways. Know your audience. Build individual relationships. Level the communications playing field.
Your life will be enriched and your business will thrive as you leverage the strengths of team members around the world.
Learn MoreFor help building and managing high-performing teams around the world or strengthening your global leadership communications, learn more about Mandel's Collaboration and Team Building Skills Training.
Or, contact us to schedule a free consultation.
With remote jobs increasing in 71% in 2020, many leaders continue to manage remote workers as if they were managing a co-located team.
Yet, fifty three percent of leaders we surveyed at a recent webinar said that they had NOT received any training on leading a virtual team.
Gratitude. Appreciation. Recognition. It makes you feel good. This week in the US, many will pause for a day or two to give thanks and show appreciation for the things and people we care about most. It’s no secret how appreciation benefits the person getting it—but did you know it benefits the person giving it just as much?
Discover why recognition is such a powerful tool for improving relationships and wellbeing in life—and at work. Learn how to (and how NOT to) express your appreciation to others.
People in communities across the globe are adjusting to communicating while wearing masks. As we’re all experiencing, masks present both verbal and non-verbal communication challenges.Given this, we’ve prepared 5 tips for effective communications while wearing a mask, and compiled several insightful articles from leading publications on additional best practices.
As part of our research into listening intelligence, we’ve detected four distinct styles (or preferences) of how people listen. These four listening styles cover what individuals pay attention to as well as what they are likely to miss in any collaboration.
Learn more about the 4 Listening Habits, and how listening impacts both the well-being and productivity of your virtual teams.
As you and your teams navigate working remotely, we’re publishing tips and best practices for leading virtual meetings, presenting virtually and promoting remote team collaboration.
For this week’s tips, here are 3 best practices for encouraging collaboration in your virtual meetings:
It happened fast. One day you were meeting with your colleagues at the office. The next day you and everyone you work with are working in remote isolation from home. Whether you’re new to working remotely or an experienced veteran, we all need to raise our virtual collaboration game to not only make this new reality work, but to make it work really well. Read on to discover seven practical, high impact tactics you can implement right now to ensure the success of your virtual meetings.
With travel restrictions, reduced in-person meetings, and canceled events, many organizations have employees working from home. For remote team members interested in brushing up on virtual communication skills, we’ve put together a list of helpful articles.
Meetings are more effective when people aren’t distracted. If your team is being taken off course by unexpected emotions, empathy can help build the bridge between wasted time and productivity. Brad Holst shares three ways to increase meeting productivity with empathy in this week’s blog.
Read the blog and learn how to make your next team offsite your most productive yet.
Read this week's blog to learn the secret ingredient to Nobel Laureate success. (Hint: It’s not just that they're smart!)
- Leading a Virtual Team Means Doing Things Differently
- Are You Really Listening?
- 4 Listening Tips for Improving Your Virtual Meetings
- The Irresistible Power of Stories in Virtual Selling
- The Top Sales Skill for 2021!
- Top Virtual Communication Mistakes – and How to Overcome Them in 2021!
- Tell a Story. Close a Deal. Even on Zoom.
- Throwback: Why Appreciation Matters in Life and at Work
- Tips for Communicating Effectively While Wearing a Mask
- Five Tips From a Virtual Meeting Producer