Leaders who are willing to adjust their style, expectations, and timelines are far more successful than those who expect others to adapt.. They harness the strengths of the team’s background, experiences, cultures, and traditions within the context of what will work in each situation and each market across the globe.
How is leading people globally different from leading people locally?
- You are leading a more diversified population with varied backgrounds that provide a totally different environment and completely different challenges than leading domestically.
- Scope and complexity complicates communications and relationships and this requires more interpersonal and intercultural sensitivity.
- Emotional intelligence looks a little different in each culture. Observation and cultural clues requires one to vary his/her style and lead people appropriately.
- Labor laws are different from one country to the next. One must be very careful to ask the right questions.
- Local, regional and global business teams require sensitivity to diverse cultures. People from one place may view things differently than those from another.
- It’s much harder to create a collaborative multicultural team than one that is more culturally homogeneous. Within a single country you have a familiar cultures and a single language. Culture, language, and people differences are challenging.
As we integrate teams around the world, knowing these key differences is the starting point to developing the skills and behaviours necessary to be a successful global leader.