MANAGING ACROSS TIME ZONES 1 OF 3

Engaging and aligning for success

You have been good at managing teams locally, but now you are required to engage with colleagues from international locations. You must work remotely with many new colleagues, suppliers, customers, and other stakeholders. People you may know only by names. Many companies create international teams to pool global talents to meet business needs. It poses new challenges in organizing meetings and managing teams. Here are a few suggestions to help you. The blog is in three parts.

Pre-Work:

  1. Learn as much as you can prior to connecting with people located outside your workplace. Check out their background/profiles in the organization. Learn about them from others in your organization who may have dealt with them. Focus on an individual’s style, expectations, and preferences. For foreigners, check their cultural and social practices. For example, an English person’s comment “interesting” may mean “not convinced”. Different cultures have different interpretations of the same words. The information collected as the background will help you use right communications to avoid misunderstandings and build personal relationships. Learn accents of various people in the team.
  2. Explain your role, your language and your expectations to new colleagues. Connect one on one using phone or video for introductions.
  3. Since we are from different locations, we need to spend time talking about how we’re going to work. Otherwise, we can end up wasting a lot of time because of different expectations.
  4. Minimise the number of participants in a meeting. The lesser the number of people, involved in remote meetings, the better.
  5. Check availability of common connectivity means Video calling, Spider phones etc. at different locations.

 

Further Reading:

https://www.mediacurrent.com/blog/17-tips-leading-effective-conference-calls/

Next: Managing Cross-Border Teams 2/3

 

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