How to manage a multicultural team ?

Multicultural relationships have always existed.

Multicultural teams are nowadays common with the globalization

Therefore these teams have a high intercultural power. Also they greatly impact the effectiveness and wealth of the company. However to get results from such a  trend it is important to adapt your management style according to the different cultures and behaviours that are part of your team. While managing an international team there are rules to follow, to facilitate efficiency and receive the best results. Referring to rules means that there is no universal approach to management. Be aware that the perfect manager does not exist.

There are common points shared by successful global managers

  • Be effective

A multicultural team will have members of different values and cultures. The team will be faced with some misunderstanding leading to potential conflicts. And as any good manager you will need to resolve these issues, calmly and successfully. Being conscious of their cultural differences, you will have to learn to adapt and teach your team to evolve into a constructive environment.

  • Be open-minded

Task execution and crisis management are totally different from a country to another. In Europe it is essential to proceed with the task quickly. On the other side the presentation and method of completion is the most valued in Asia. Then it is crucial to understand such differences of working style to prevent any team issues.

  • Be cohesive

Team building is more than welcome to make your team more cohesive. Indeed the most important factor for a company to get good results. A close-knit team creates confidence. This confidence will enable the group to operate efficiently and thus achieve more profits for the company.

Louise Zinsstag, a young Swiss employee in a Malaysian company, mainly desires of her manager to have “mutual-understanding”. If we can give you one advice to succeed this may be this one. Mutual understanding is the most important quality you have to develop in your team in order to make it work. Obviously the whole team need to adopt this way of thinking to create a good work environment. Stop thinking about the myth of the global manager : again there is no perfect global manager. However, by paying more attention to your employees’ needs you will become the best possible manager for them.

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