Another important stream of research on the impact of individuals has evolved around multicultural individuals and how they affect organizational phenomena, as described recently in a comprehensive review by Vora et al. (2019). In a recent study, Backmann and colleagues explored how cultural identity plurality is related to bridging processes in multinational teams (Backmann, Kanitz, Tian, Hoffmann, & Hoegl, 2020). They confirmed that individuals with more cultural identities engage in these bridging behaviors, with cultural intelligence as a mediator. We are sure to working remotely in a different time zone see more studies illustrating how multicultural individuals contribute to multicultural teams (Dau, 2016; Fitzsimmons, Miska, & Stahl, 2011). Different individuals have different ways of integrating (or not) their separate cultural identities, and the identities within an individual may be seen by others as more or less positive (Fitzsimmons, 2013). Because this aspect of individual-level multiculturalism is related to the intersectionality of diversities (see below), it is important that future research examine the effects of different types of multiculturalism.
Asynchronous work can feel taxing and inefficient if you’re only working on a single project and you’re stuck waiting for another person’s contribution. Scheduling your work so you can pick up other tasks while waiting to be unblocked can reduce this downtime. Originally, GitLab let software developers collaborate on writing code and packaging it up into software applications. Today, GitLab has a wide range of capabilities used by people around the globe in all kinds of companies and roles.
How to Navigate Cultural Differences As a Global HR Professional
If teams don’t experience any overlap in work hours, there’s bound to be some time wasted as one team is waiting for the instructions or the input from another one, working at a later time. And, as team communication is directly correlated to productive collaboration, it can lead to unnecessary delays, missed messages, and an overall drop in productivity. The actual time difference poses one of the biggest barriers to effective communication across distributed teams.
We do not have adequate answers or clear advice for the ever-more-complex situations that leaders of global organizations face. We hope that scholars in the field share our sense of urgency and that the reflections and suggestions in this Retrospective help propel this research forward. If you’ve never had to do this type of documentation before, it can seem like a lot of extra work. But these behaviors also benefit the folks who are in or close to your own time zone.
The confusion of times came to an end when standard time zones were formally adopted by the U.S. Charles F. Dowd proposed a system of hourly standard time zones for North American railroads around 1863, although he published nothing on the matter at that time and did not consult railroad officials until 1869. In 1870 he proposed four ideal time zones having north–south borders, the first centered on Washington, D.C., but by 1872 the first was centered on meridian 75° west of Greenwich, with natural borders such as sections of the Appalachian Mountains. Instead, U.S. and Canadian railroads implemented a version proposed by William F. Allen, the editor of the Traveler’s Official Railway Guide. The borders of its time zones ran through railroad stations, often in major cities. For example, the border between its Eastern and Central time zones ran through Detroit, Buffalo, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, and Charleston.
- When scheduling a meeting or call with remote team members, make sure to ask them what time zone they are in so that you can account for any time difference with their local time when you schedule.
- But, despite all the benefits of having a diverse global staff, companies are still trying to figure out how to work successfully across different timezones.
- Highly capable asynchronous work still allows for, and includes at appropriate moments, some synchronous discussion.
- In our own experience with leaders in organizations, the message “diversity is always good” does not fit with most people’s lived experience.
- This can make it hard to communicate and develop a relationship with your colleagues.
- With greater employee mobility and even more organisations now making the effort to develop virtual teams, coming across more diverse teams is only going to grow.