Today, many companies of different sizes are starting to form multidisciplinary and international teams. In doing so, they face a variety of challenges such as time zones, cultural clashes and communication barriers. That is why knowing in advance the issues you may face when expanding your business, will help you to make an effective plan to avoid conflicts.Regardless of your team size, your responsibility as a leader is to achieve individual and collective success. When your team members are scattered around the world, maintaining the team mentality and ensuring that everyone is working toward the same goals, can be the biggest challenges you will face.
Identify cultural differences and make the team aware of themIdentifying the way in which different cultures work, and respecting their habits and customs, will help your team to communicate better and decrease the learning curve of working in a multicultural environment.
Identify each team member’s responsibilitiesFor teams that work remotely, it is important that they know their colleagues have a sense of belonging. It is advisable to always have an organizational chart of the team with a brief description of each position and its functions. This will help everyone know the different roles properly and identify who they can contact if they have doubts on specific issues.Add a brief personal description of each team member to generate more empathy and remember that for some cultures, generating relationships is very important.
Keep communication open and regularAs you know, communication is key in every team, but it becomes even more important for those teams that work remotely. Having regular meetings where you share relevant information, ideas and experiences will be imperative for the development of your team. Above all, it will keep the team aligned and regularly reporting the progress in the fulfilment of its objectives.Having a communication tool where they can upload and exchange documents will be very useful to allow them to collaborate on projects without barriers.All the communication tools are great, but being present is necessary to keep a healthy team. Considering at least one trip a year in your budget to visit your collaborators will give you the opportunity to build trust and a good relationship.
Language and tonePerhaps not all the individuals in your team speak your language fluently. In these cases, it is advisable not to use local slang in meetings and conversations, as well as being aware of your tone and speed in order for everyone to understand what is being talked about. Finally, a summary of the meeting should be written and shared with everyone involved to ensure that the objectives of the meeting were clear and understood by all. Availability and scheduleIf you have previously managed teams in different countries, you probably know the difficulty of scheduling meetings due to different time zones and personal agendas, so it is advisable to schedule meetings days in advance.There will be instances where you need information urgently, but your collaborator in the country is no longer in working hours. In these instances sending a notification letting the person know the urgency will help to avoid delays and keep the priority in mind. International project managerHiring a person with experience in managing international projects will better allow you to focus your time on other important tasks for the organization and delegate the responsibility of your team administration to the manager. This person should hire the right personnel for your company, manage your team and keep up with the progress in each country.
International Outsourced Personnel Administration (GEOR)Hiring a company that is dedicated to the management of outsourced personnel will help you hire personnel in any country without the need to go through the complexity involved in opening a legal entity.With SERVIAP, all the tasks involved in hiring new staff in a different country are covered. Such as, keeping the hiring process in accordance with the laws of each country, manage the paperwork properly, managing the payroll and employee payment and eliminating the general risks that this entails. With PEO or Employer of Record service, you will not have to worry about learning the country’s legislation or opening a legal entity which will allow you to focus in the strategy to develop your international businessYou might want to read: Why do business expand internationally