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Managing global project. Global Projects. ”It is virtually impossible for multinational corporations to exploit economies of scale and scope, maximize the transfer of knowledge or cultivate a global mind-set without understanding and mastering the management of global business teams.” .

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Managing global project


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global projects
Global Projects
  • ”It is virtually impossible for multinational corporations to exploit economies of scale and scope, maximize the transfer of knowledge or cultivate a global mind-set without understanding and mastering the management of global business teams.”
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Defining a Global project

  • In corporations with activities in many countries
  • Cross national borders
  • Cross hierarchical levels
  • Cross functional levels
  • Aims at utilization resources and above all knowledge at the geographically dispersed units

AND

  • Temporary group constellations
  • Pre-defined frames
  • Pre-defined goals/quality

MNC

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why global projects
Why global projects?
  • Coordination across geographically dispersed business units
  • Experiencing participation
  • Ease the implementation of common corporate solutions at local business units
  • Creative solutions – reduces the risk standardization
  • Global use of geographically dispersed knowledge
    • Knowledge connected both to the task and performance
    • Give rise to new knowledge
    • Possibilities on a further learning as knowledge can be shared and used on other projects and in the daily operations
challenges for global projects on business unit and team member levels
Challenges for Global Projects on Business unit and Team member levels
  • Concerning affected business units
    • Loss of important competence
    • Use of resources
    • ”Knowledge is power”
    • Unification around common goals/standards
    • Not-invented-here syndrome
  • Concerning team members
    • Geographically dispersed
    • Cultural differences
    • Language barriers
    • Lack of common routines and norms
    • ”Knowledge is power”
common problem areas
Common problem areas
  • Cultural differences
  • Language barriers
  • Standards – different requirements of each market
  • Different units have their own set of priorities
  • Time-zone differences
  • Obtaining buy-in to objectives of remote members
  • Poor development and communication plans
  • Clarity in responsibilities
  • Lack of sharing of problems when they arise
  • Delays caused by support systems
dealing with problems in global projects
Dealing with problems in global projects
  • Establish strategies for task and processes
  • Formal project start-up meeting
  • Regular face-to-face meetings
  • Establishing regular video-conferences
  • Judicious use of e-mail in circulating project information
  • Intra-net
  • Working with senior department management
  • Consider the degree of diversity in relation to the task
strategies for managing global projects task strategies
Strategies for managing global projects – Task strategies
  • Creating a sense of purpose
    • What is the mission of the team?
    • What are the goals of the team?
    • Who should be a member?
  • Structuring the task
    • To what degree needs the task be structured?
    • What are the rules of the game?
    • How important is time and how do we manage time?
    • What work can be divided and then integrated?
    • What can be done together/apart?
  • Assigning roles and responsibilities
    • Who does what and is responsible for what?
    • From where should the project manager be appointed and on what criteria?
    • What is his/her role?
    • Who needs to attend meetings?
  • Reaching decisions
    • How should decisions be made? (vote, consensus, compromise)
    • Who is expected to make decisions? (Team vs leader)
strategies for managing global projects process strategies
Strategies for managing global projects – Process strategies
  • Team building
    • What is the mission of the team?
    • How much time for and what form of social activates?
  • Choosing how to communicate
    • What is the working language?
    • How to address the imbalance in level of fluency?
    • What kind of communication technology can be used?
    • What is an effective presentation?
  • Electing participants
    • How can one ensure participation of all members?
    • To what extent and why are some members assigned more credibility?
    • Is every members input considered?
    • Who listens/who talks/who interrupts?
  • Resolving conflicts
    • How should one manage a conflict?
    • Is collaboration sought if not how to enforce it?
    • To what extent should one compromise? How does one view negations?
  • Evaluating performance
    • How and when do we evaluate?
    • Is evaluation a two-way process?
    • How direct can feedback be?
means supporting team work in global projects
Means supporting team work in global projects
  • Establish strategies for task and processes
  • Formal project start-up meeting
  • Regular face-to-face meetings
  • Establishing regular video-conferences
  • Judicious use of ICT for circulating project information
  • Working with senior department management
  • Consider the degree of diversity in relation to the task
diversity in global project
Diversity in global project
  • Aspects affecting performance
    • The task
      • Creative
      • Computational
      • Coordination
    • Dimensions of heterogeneity
      • Values
      • Cognitive schema
      • Demeanor
      • Language
    • Curvilinear effects

Hambrick et.al., 1998

diversity in global projects
Diversity in global projects
  • Diversity of values
    • Positive for creative
    • Neutral for computational
    • Negative for coordinative
  • Diversity of cognitive schema
    • Positive for creative
    • Positive then neutral when more than demanded
    • Positive then negative when more than demanded
  • Diversity of demeanors
    • Negative for all three
  • Language (common working language)
    • Limited knowledge negative for all three

Hambrick et.al., 1998

managing differences
Managing differences
  • Understand business interdependencies
  • Respond to multiple cultures simultaneously
  • Recognize the influence of cultures at home
  • Willing to share power
  • Demonstrate cognitive complexity
  • Adopt a “cultural-general” approach
  • Rapidly learn and unlearn
desired skills among global project managers
Desired Skills Among Global Project Managers
  • Professional knowledge
    • knowledge of work methods and processes
    • technical skills to perform certain activities
  • Social competence
    • knowledge of human behavior
    • empathy
    • communication skills
  • Cultural competencies
    • individual background
    • experiences
develop project managers competencies
Develop project managers’ competencies
  • Through experience
  • Training and education
  • Feedback from the project team
  • Mentor-system
  • Interest organizations
what can be done to support the project manager s position
What can be done to support the project manager’s position?
  • Make the project manager role legitimatein the organization
  • Cultural training
  • Create career paths for project managers
  • Develop remuneration/bonus plans
  • Make it possible for the project manager to develop leadership skills besides necessary skills in how to technically manage projects
  • Continuous follow-ups of how the departments/lines and the project teams co-operate
barriers to a well functioning global project
Barriers to a well-functioning global project
  • Unclear or ambiguous goals/objectives
  • Ambiguous expectations concerning roles and responsibilities
  • Indistinct project structure
  • Deficient cultural awareness
  • Differences in commitment
  • Communication barriers
  • Poor co-operation and co-ordination across border
  • Poor leadership
  • High turnover off members
  • Suppressed conflicts

Lack of trust

global projects problems and solutions
Global projects- problems and solutions
  • Lack of trust
  • Managing lack of trust
    • Schedule personal meetings
    • Rotate and diffuse leadership
    • Team-based rewards/bonus systems
    • Build social capital
  • Communication barriers
    • geographic
    • language
    • culture
  • Managing communication barriers
    • Language and cultural studies
    • Agree on common norms of behavior
    • Decision-making resting upon data
    • Develop alternative solutions
    • Rotate the meeting locations

(Gupta och Govindarajan, 2001)

the role of global projects in knowledge levering
The role of global projects in knowledge levering
  • Support the strategic intents of identifying and recognizing knowledge in the MNC
  • Support the needs of leveraging local knowledge within the MNC
  • Enable economies of scale in knowledge development and sharing in the MNC
knowledge processes in mncs
Knowledge processes in MNCs
  • Knowledge as tacit and explicit
  • Knowledge development
    • To explore and learn new ways, while concurrently exploiting what they have already learnt
    • Local knowledge development
    • Global knowledge development
  • Knowledge sharing
    • The provision as well as the reception of knowledge is shaped by the subsidiary sharing and the subsidiary receiving knowledge
    • Local knowledge sharing
    • Global knowledge sharing
knowledge development and knowledge sharing the phases
Knowledge development and knowledge sharing – the phases
  • Initiation and planning
    • The idea of leveraging knowledge on a global level
    • Setting up the team
    • Kick-off meeting
  • Actual development and progress
    • Coordination of activities
    • Communication and interaction mediated through different means, e.g. face-to-face meetings, ICTs
      • E-mail and telephone the most common ICTs
    • Managing information and knowledge flows
  • Final phase
    • The team member as bearer of knowledge
    • The success of product launch is contingent upon the ability to incorporate local demands
    • … at the same time, common product viable at a global market
critical factors
Critical factors

Knowledge development

Knowledge sharing

Motivation

The mix of skills

Shared knowledge and understanding

Socialization

ICTs

Understanding local demands