Assignment 6 Virtual Teams Years ago, before the vast working public ever dreamed of e-mail, instant messaging, or live videoconferencing, work teams used to be in the same locations, with possibly one or two members a train or plane ride away. Today, however, the reach of corporations spans many countries, so the need for teams to work together across international boundaries has increased. To deal with this challenge, multinationals use global virtual teams to gain a competitive advantage. Global virtual teams have their advantages and disadvantages. On the positive side, because team members come from different countries with different knowledge and points of view, they may develop creative ideas and solutions to problems that work for multiple cultures. On the negative side, global virtual teams face more challenges than traditional teams that meet face-to-face. For one thing, miscommunication can lead to misunderstandings, which can create stress and conflict among team members. Also, members who do not accept individuals from different cultures may hesitate to share information openly, creating problems of trust. To create and implement effective global virtual teams, managers must carefully select employees they believe will thrive in such an environment. Employees must be comfortable communicating electronically with others, and they must be open to different ideas. When dealing with team members in other countries, speaking multiple languages may also be necessary. Team members also must realize that the values they hold may be vastly different from their teammates’ values. For instance, an individual from a country that values relationships and sensitivity, such as Sweden, might face a challenge when interacting with someone from Spain, which values assertiveness and competitiveness. Though there are many challenges facing global virtual teams, companies that implement them effectively can realize tremendous rewards through the diverse knowledge they gain. Source: Based on N. Zakaria, A. Amelinckx, and D. Wilemon, “Working Together Apart? Building a Knowledge-Sharing Culture for Global Virtual Teams,” Creativity and Innovation Management, March 2004, pp 15–29. The assignment for this unit deals with global virtual teams 1.Go to citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.101.8507&rep=rep1&type=pdf 2.Read the article “Conflict and Performance in Global Virtual Teams.” You will create a plan for a multinational organization to expand into an Eastern European country (Poland, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Hungary, etc). 3.The first step will be to create a virtual team to develop the expansion plans. 4.You can use resources such as: http://www.executiveplanet.com/-index.php?title=Main_Page http://www.geert-hofstede.com/ http://www.un.org/en/ http://www.oecd.org http://www.worldbank.org/ http://europa.eu/index_en.htm http://www.asean.org/22122.htm You can also conduct your own research or use sources you may have used in a previous unit’s assignment. 5.You need to identify cultural differences between the U.S. and the selected country. Other differences should be noted such as work environments, and other issues identified on the websites. 6.Give some thought as to how you will identify a company or individuals in the target country. For an example resource, see http://www.buyusa.gov/ 7.After conducting your research and readings, write a 3-5 page paper that details: a.What are the potential markets like in target countries? b.What are the cultural differences that could lead to difficulties in working with a planning team in the target country? c.How will the selection process of virtual team members in the target country proceed? d.What is the assessment of probability or success in the expansion? Successfully completing the assignment: •To successfully complete this assignment the instructor must be able to clearly identify where the answer for each of the questions begins and ends. All questions within this Assignment must be completed. •The minimum page count requirement for this project is three to five pages of body text, this does not include the cover page or the references page. •Use the assigned readings to support your discussion •Write this paper in standard APA format including a cover page, two short citations and a references page •Please remember: Grammar, spelling, punctuation, sentence structure and word usage always count!
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