In our global leadership training programs we look at the impact of DCCT – distance, cultures, timezones and technology on how we lead people
When people think about global leadership challenges – national cultural differences are often the first thing that people notice. But cultural differences are rarely the toughest one to solve. With the right mindset, global leaders can learn to enjoy and manage cultural differences at work quite quickly.
Distance is a bigger barrier to global leadership – people are much more comfortable with face-to-face contact and the lack of this can have major consequences for trust and leadership styles – whether global or local. The ability to manage remote and virtual teams and networks become critical
Timezones are a fact – there is no right time for a global conference call, we just have to be aware and adapt our leadership practices to recognize this.
Technology is both an enabler and a barrier; it makes global leadership possible but can often get in the way of communication and effectiveness (think of all those unnecessary emails and conference calls).
Global leadership is made more difficult by the sheer business and organization complexity of large multi-site organizations – matrix and virtual working, business scale, speed etc… – This is the subject of my of my book Speed Lead – faster, simper ways to manage people, projects and teams in complex companies and our speed lead training and consulting.
When we talk to managers about developing these global leadership skills, they are often skeptical about the investment of time in training.
When we ask them how they learned global leadership themsleves they then tell long war stories of the mistakes they made and the time, travel and expense it took to recover and put things right.
Our question is always – can you afford the time and cost of letting everyone in your organization learn about leadership by expensive trial and error?
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