Clarify value trade-offs Detect gaps and ambiguity. Envisioning team goals is especially important where bureaucratic conflict can destroy team effectiveness.
Basic Guidelines to Culturally-Specific Interactions The following guidelines might be useful, especially if you are new to the organization. Be aware of your personal biases, style, preferences, lens and focus.
This is critically important for successful leadership in any type of culture.
You make a major difference in your organization, whether you know it or not, just by exposing it to your own nature and style of working. Thus, you need to understand your nature. Realize that each part of an organization probably has a unique culture. For example, the secretarial staff might interact with each other in a manner quite different from that of the marketing staff.
In larger organizations, there are often several differences, for example, between senior management and support staff.
Promptly convey to employees that you want to be sensitive to their culture. You should start in your first interaction with them.
State that you recognize that different people might work differently depending on their own personalities and the culture of the overall organization. Ask them how you can understand the nature of their organization. Consider getting a mentor, or representative, from the organization.
Attempt to get someone from the organization to help you understand their culture and how to work in a manner compatible with the culture of the organization.
This request is not a sign of weakness or lack of expertise; rather it is an authentic request that better serves you and your employees.
Key cultural aspects that might affect your leadership include: Assertiveness Are members of your organization comfortable being honest and direct with each other?
If not, how can you still be as authentic as possible and help them to be as authentic as possible, as well?
Body language Are there any specific cues that you can notice to help you to sense how others are experiencing you? Communication styles and direction Is communication fairly direct and specific or more indirect and general? Conflict Is conflict considered bad and avoided? Or is conflict accepted as normal and directly addressed when it appears?
Eye contact Are members of the organization comfortable with sustained eye contact during communication or not?
Gestures Are there any specific gestures that can cause members of the organization discomfort or confusion? Humor Is use of humor in the organization rather widespread? Is there anything about the use of humor about which you should be aware?
Information collection Should you be aware of any potential problems or use any certain precautions when conducting interviews or using assessments? Physical space For example, are members of your organization quite conscious of having a minimum amount of space around them when they work or speak with others?
Power Are members attuned to certain people of power when solving problems and making decisions? Silence Are members uncomfortable with silence during communication? Or is it a common aspect of communicating in their workplace?
Time Is time a precious commodity that seems to underlie many activities, or can activities take as long as they need to take to be done effectively? Wording Are there certain words or phrasings that cause discomfort when people from different cultures interact?
How to Talk About Management and Leadership in Diverse Environments It is not uncommon for people of any culture to experience confusion or engage in protracted arguments about activities only to realize later on that they have been in agreement all along — they had been using different definitions for the same terms.
The following guidelines are most important when ensuring people continue to understand each other when talking about management activities. Recognize Difference Between Terms That Refer to Results Versus Activities to Produce Those Results It is common for people from different cultures to become confused because different people are talking about results and others about the activities to produce the results.An organization’s culture is driven by the values throughout that organization.
Employees need to feel included -- that their values are being recognized, understood and respected. You make a major difference in your organization, whether you know it or not, just by exposing it to your own nature and style of working.
Building Consensus. Perhaps the most common hazard for teams is a lack of consensus. It is a particularly thorny problem, and brings a lot of teams to heated arguments, division and disaster.
Building Consensus: Conflict and Unity Chapter 1 Consensus — A Different Approach. Introduction. This book provides guidance for strengthening the ability of groups and individuals interested in seeking agreement and common understanding for more informed decisions.
Consensus discussion on values of the organization Agreement seeking Process oriented Relationship building Group thinking Problem identification Conclusion Teams across geographically diverse organizations encounter challenges such as language barriers, remote communication, communication in general and other conflicts.
Values initiatives have nothing to do with building consensus—they’re about imposing a set of fundamental, strategically sound beliefs on a broad group of people.
When you encourage debate you inspire creativity and that's how you'll spur your team on to better results. Establish the parameters of consensus-building sessions. Be sensitive to the frustration that can mount when the team is not achieving consensus.