We all know that small cultural differences on assignment can lead to big problems in the workplace.
Large, multicultural teams are now the norm, so providing assignees with cross-cultural training is essential.
Before employees are transferred across the globe to their new home on assignment, take the time to prepare them for their new role and new home. More and more emphasis is now being placed on cultural training, as businesses often include a blend of staff from different nationalities working together in close proximity.
Leading in a global context means that employers need to influence globally, and that requires understanding the cultural paradigms.
Besides, moving to a new country can often be overwhelming to some, as they find that things that used to be social norms are now the exact opposite. Providing language courses where possible will also allow assignees to navigate their new home better and fit in with locals.
Cultural differences lead to serious faux pas with clients that potentially can become damaging for the company. Cultural problems negatively affect team working together in what now is a more connected workplace with online meeting bringing every employee closer to a cultural mishap.
Indeed, teams are becoming more multicultural and employers will find that effective teams understand each other across cultures to work together.
Moving to a new country and culture can be overwhelming for your employees or clients, it is not just language barrier. There are social norms that can be offensive and it is easy for serious misunderstandings to occur.
Make assignees aware of:
Own ingrained cultural values
Differences in cultural values
Openness to change and other perspectives
Teaching employees about their own cultural values, and those of their new home, reduces the chance for friction and serious faux pas.
Research shows that leaders with higher intercultural skills perform better in the long-term, making them more effective for their organisation.
Building teams that work better together creates a high return on investment that businesses can’t ignore.