بررسی شکست ارتباطات در تیم های مجازی جهانی
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : International Journal of Project Management, Volume 30, Issue 2, February 2012, Pages 199–212
Virtual matrix-managed teams with geographically dispersed members are becoming increasingly common in the high-tech sector. These teams, referred to as global virtual teams (GVTs), are generally described as culturally diverse, geographically dispersed, electronically-communicating workgroups. They rapidly form, change, and dissolve due to dynamic changes in the market. In addition, most GVTs today have team members spread among several projects with competing priorities. Communication breakdown can wreak havoc on a project as team members struggle to effectively communicate and work with one another. As a result, project delivery risks with distributed teams tend to be greater when compared to co-located teams. To address this critical issue, this study investigates the types of factors that significantly contribute to communication breakdown by identifying five distinct areas through a series of interviews with project team members in high-tech companies. These areas are trust, interpersonal relations, cultural differences, leadership and technology. These criteria are analyzed using mathematical Decision Models taking expert opinions from professionals who worked in GVTs.
1.1. Objective of the study In this paper, our overall objective is to study the communications breakdown and see what factors are responsible for this. We studied a total of five criteria and how these impact the communications breakdown in global team. These criteria were mapped to different statements. Statements were assigned different weights by group of experts who were interviewed for this study. Most of the virtual teams we have studied in this paper are matrix organizations. In these organizations, members report to the project manager for the project deliverables, but they report to another manager for their functional group. How does a project manager ensure the project success when he/she has to handle a project with global virtual teams? Multinational companies like Intel has a wide variety of products and the product development teams and design and operations teams for the projects are scattered all over the world. When hundreds of projects are run every year in different groups with global virtual teams, this can be very challenging. When the company started opening new software development centers and design centers in Asia and South America, there were lots of challenges. Still the company has mastered the art of managing global projects. Employees are regularly sent to other countries to understand the culture and working environment of new offices. For every new project, generally a one week face-to-face interaction of the team members is very common. This ensures that initial trust and team environment is built even with team members in different countries. 1.2. Basis for criteria selection Any project teams go thru four stages of life cycle. These are (a) Forming, (b) Norming (c) Reforming and (d) Performing. As per Katzenbach (Katzenbach and Smith, 2004) for any team to become a high performance team, trust, relations and leadership are the core pillars. Trust becomes all the more important as the project manager cannot keep face-to-face contact with the team members all the time. Since the team members meet only one or two times face-to-face during a project, maintaining a cordial relation is also very important. In virtual teams, team morale already suffers as remote team members sometimes feel neglected. Therefore, a motivating team leader — who believes in himself and in the performance of the team, is all the more important. Only a good leader can ensure the success of a global virtual team, otherwise different team members work towards different goals and in different directions losing the sense of the team mission. Based on these facts, we decided to use relations, trust and leadership as the criteria for our study. Technology is at the core of virtual teams. Without internet, email, video conference and audio bridges, virtual teams can't even exist. Therefore, we included technology as one of the criteria in our study. When we have project teams in different countries that means employees follow different religions and cultures. In some countries, it is unreligious to work on weekends, whereas in some countries working round the clock is an expectation. So in these types of scenarios, a project manager needs to ensure that he/she is taking all cultural and religious issues into consideration when planning resources for the project. This is the reason culture was also taken as one of the criteria for the study. We will discuss these five criteria in detail in main sections of the paper. Hierarchy of the model showing all the criteria is shown in Fig. 2.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
In today's world, virtual project teams are indispensable. We live in a global village wherein different components of a project are handled by teams sitting in different locations. In a global company, design is done in US, Testing in Mexico, manufacturing in China and software development in India. So how do companies ensure success in this new environment of global customers, employees, business partners and competitors? Basic fundamentals of team building are still valid, but new dimensions of technology and global economy are making matters complicated and challenging for the managers. We tried to look at these issues from the perspective of a mathematical model. Based on the compiled outcome data from the survey and PCM tool, we found that on cross-cultural differences, GVTs seem to perform poorly in maintaining effective cross-functional communication and leveraging the benefits offered by a diverse group of nationalities. Some respondents said that it took a while for their GVT to understand the ideological differences of other nationalities. However, a strong presence of company culture seems to help GVTs foster effective communication and survey comments shows that GVTs seem to prefer vendors that well understand the corporate culture.