Document Type

Closed Project

Publication Date

Spring 2002


Dragan Milosevic

Course Title

Communication and Team Building

Course Number

EMGT 522/622


Teams in the workplace -- Management, Knowledge management, Communication in organizations, Intercultural communication


In today’s driven economy executives are looking for ways to make better decisions for their companies. With the complexity of doing business increasing significantly, and with a constantly growing global market, top management has learned that one person cannot successfully make all the critical decisions. In the past many companies have adapted working in a team environment. In most cases the creation of teams causes increased efficiency, which results in better decision making process and less time spent on projects. Whether it is making important decisions or accomplishing simple work tasks team will always have a better chance to get the job done right. There are various types of teams that can be created like distributed, crosscultural, long term or short term. In the following paper we have concentrated on cross-cultural teams, which are experiencing a tremendous boom, with increasing globalization. First we introduce the big potential which such teams offer and also drawbacks which may occur. Several research papers and other supportive literature helped us to identify what cultural differences can negatively influence performance and result in weaknesses of multi national teams. From the broad spectrum of cultural differences we have chosen cultural values, assertiveness and collectivism versus individualism and we address these issues closely. We have tried to find ways how to use the fundamentals of cultural differences to more efficiently communicate with team members, to resolve conflicts and motivate the team to achieve their set goals. Through the paper we support our ideas with research work as well as our personal experience from working in multi cultural teams.


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