What do Vietnam, Brazil, and India Have in Common?

On a single day this month, ELI consultants were dispatched across the globe to work with clients from Vietnam, Brazil, and India.  ELI was, for that day, part of what those countries had in common.  And it didn’t stop there; our presentations also included participants from Australia, Japan, Pakistan, South Korea, China, and Thailand.  Simultaneously, we were working with no fewer than 75 U.S. participants on the same day who, themselves, were addressing issues similar to our international clients.
globeWhile each unique in their business needs and strategies, every one of these clients shared a common challenge:  How do we transcend our different cultures and divergent legal systems to promote a common understanding of our company values and expectations to unify us to meet our goals?
Having worked internationally for nearly a decade to help clients with this and similar types of challenges, we at ELI continue to be humbled by the profound impact of our work with clients from around the globe.  In spite all of the various ways we may be different, when it comes to professional workplace cultures we, more often than not, want very similar things.
At the core of our consulting experience, we have discovered that regardless of where people live and work or where they are from, there are fundamental human experiences that are held in the highest regard:  respect, integrity, fairness.  While cultures differ from country to county (and perhaps even region to region) in the ways these values are communicated, we consistently find that a few key guidelines can be tremendously powerful in providing clear illustrations and examples for how people can interact productively at work regardless of where they are in the world.  More importantly, convening as leaders with common objectives, we are able to facilitate the kind of conversations that transcend differences and ultimately create cohesive teams and promote dynamic collaboration.
And a postscript to our clients – thank you, on behalf of ELI, for allowing us to partner with you to help to promote the dignity and fair treatment of people around the globe.  We are honored.

  • Theresa Sigillito Hollema says:

    Tucker, the experience of Eli internationally reflects the global, connected world of the present. As ELI focuses on the concepts of Respect, Integrity and Fairness with their clients, I can imagine the conversations lead to the question ‘what do these words really mean’. In our cultural consulting and training work, we discuss the cultural values and assumptions that may influence participants in their own thinking and behaviour. Through this dialogue, international teams, departments, etc ultimately align on their shared commitments, by first acknowledging the differences. The successful global leaders can navigate the tension of uniting their organization around common values while creating an environment where diversity thrives.

    • Thank you for your comments, Theresa. Aligning expectations around a consistent set of organizational behaviors and standards is critical for the success of international teams. Having had the wonderful opportunity to partner with you many times in delivering programs in Europe, I have seen firsthand the value of providing cultural context and understanding in the manner that you describe. Our collaboration has allowed for a richer, more engaging exploration of broad concepts like Respect, Fairness and Integrity. Working together, bridging our perspectives on leadership, compliance, and cultural understanding, we have been able to help leaders translate organizational values into culturally relevant professional standards applicable to day to day behaviors and interactions.

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