Workplace Trends

Workforce Trends

Workplace Trends: Global Teaming on the Rise

By JC Heinen on June 7, 2013

Are your teams going global? A recent LHH study, Better Hires, Better Business, reports that over the next two to three years, 27% of HR managers and 55% of recruiters expect the trend toward global teams to grow. As organizations continue to expand globally, an ever-increasing number will be moving toward international team composition.

Building international teams will give an organization a increased level of agility to more effectively meet the needs of their clients. An added advantage to global teams is the access to diverse view points and perspectives which creates a heightened awareness that encourages innovation.

Leading these multinational teams may require unique leadership strategies.  Consider the following tactics to boost productivity, engagement and accountability:

  • Launch with some face time. If possible, set the tone with an in-person kick-off meeting to help develop relationships of trust. Use video conferencing via WebEx, Skype or Face Time to foster personal interactions during regularly scheduled virtual meetings.
  • Encourage open dialogue. Agree on the team’s mission, goals and actions. Establish team norms that address expectations for communication, decision making and accountability. Regular communication will help identify challenges early and keep the team on track to achieve goals.
  • Respect cultural differences. Provide managers with cultural training to better understand the nuances of each culture. Awareness of how some cultures encourage individualism while others prefer collective accomplishments, as well as other differences, will assist in strengthening the team.
  • Be considerate of all time zones. Rotate the schedule of team meetings to accommodate every geographical location. Follow up every meeting with documentation of key decisions and action items that lists who’s accountable and by when.
  • Streamline communication. Leverage cloud-based software and social tools to store documents, share information and foster collaboration. Easy access to information, resources and people serves your teams and your customers most effectively.

When led collaboratively, global teams can provide an infusion of fresh ideas and heightened efficiency to an international organization and its customers. If your teams are going global, there’s no time like the present to build a leadership approach for success.

3 Responses to “Workplace Trends: Global Teaming on the Rise”

  1. Debbie Brandt

    I agree, have used this approach (with a few extra approaches) and it works.

    • Lee Hecht Harrison

      Hi Debbie — would you be interested in sharing one or two of the extra approaches you’ve taken? We’d love to learn some additional tips that have helped you.


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