Building a Foundation for Global Effectiveness
What makes a learning project global and successful? From the start, it’s important to set a context of global awareness and effectiveness. Many companies operate on a multinational, instead of global, basis. They launch projects in countries and regions without taking into account local cultures, customs, and procedures. To really make “global” work, you need to ensure you have globally effective people who have a global mindset and skill set. When such people take on a project, they approach it as many local projects aligned globally, versus a global project implemented locally.
In addition to being aware of the differences among people of different cultures, the globally effective person is versatile in communications and interactions. Simply defined, versatility is the ability of an individual to modify his or her behavior so that others are more comfortable.
For example, a large global pharmaceutical company wanted to drive performance at the manager level to encourage higher employee engagement worldwide. Concepts such as “engagement” are understood and demonstrated differently by different cultures, so we spent time interviewing managers, employees, and businesses across multiple countries and regions. We wanted to know how the company’s employees operated. Once we found out, we used that information to help the company define how to implement the learning project in a culturally appropriate way. A clear but flexible set of best practices was developed and followed successfully at the local level. The company met its overall objectives of driving engagement and saw an increase in its overall efficiency and revenue.
4 Strategies for Successful Global Learning Implementation
Getting culturally aware people involved in the project is really just the start.