As we are at the beginning of a new decade, there are speculations about if we have reached ‘peak globalization.’ If so, what does it mean for a leader, who heads a global company and is leading it into new markets? It may mean managing teams that are diverse in terms of nationality and geography or handling cross border and virtual teams. But it most certainly will mean that a challenging and daunting time is ahead. More importantly, it also means it’s time to adapt. Global organizations need to work across organizational boundaries and cross not only cultural barriers but also navigate the political and economic laws that rule the land. Add technological advancements in the mix, and you get how complicated the picture is. In such a scenario, how does a leader begin to manage and support the most critical asset an organization has: the people? Let’s find out.
With company branches spread across the globe, having offices in different corners of the world will inevitably bring in cultural differences. In a leadership position that requires leaders to travel overseas, experience different environments, and interact with people from other parts of the world, how do they bridge the communication and the cultural gap? Communication doesn’t just mean language, although that barrier remains. Employers and leaders must realize that culture drives how people perceive, think, and eventually act. Effective communication begins when there are awareness and acceptance that these differences exist and must be accepted. In such a case, leadership coaching can help build the conscious practice that is required to build a mindset that enables one to see different perspectives and helps in building a uniform corporate workplace culture.
Business leaders make significant decisions every day. Yet, the most challenging part of leading a multinational organization is to be able to see the big picture when all the functions from various offices require equal attention. How do you ensure that leaders stay clear of analysis paralysis? Similarly, how do you ensure that the decisions which impact the company as a whole are effective and drive it forward while keeping everyone in tow? Decision-making doesn’t come naturally to people, and it’s a process that develops and strengthens over time. Executive coaching to help leaders merge the business dynamics with organizational principles and human understanding is critical here.
Building a resilient mindset
Resilience is nothing but the ability to recover from setbacks quickly. However, dealing with failures is not an easy task, especially with central responsibilities and if the failure impacts several stakeholders. Being in a leadership position comes with a fair share of pressure, and roadblocks are not uncommon. At times, issues in personal life start affecting the professional side as well. In such a scenario, leaders can benefit from leadership coaching to learn how to better deal with tough circumstances at work and to better manage themselves and their team in times of distress. The most valuable aspect of such a system is that over time, leaders absorb specific lessons from the coach, which they can, in turn, pass on to their team members in need.
Defining an ideal coach
While training for leadership is considered an essential part of developing the leaders of a global organization, basic coaching is not enough. Leadership coaches who have vast professional experience, with clients coming from diverse nationalities, demographics, and from across industries and functions, can help in tackling various challenges at work. A varied portfolio brings credibility not only in terms of what they have worked on so far, but what they can do to develop the leader. The right coach enables leaders to develop higher emotional intelligence and build compassion and empathy. After all, leaders impact people and their lives, not just improve the bottom line and share prices. An ideal coach would be someone whose experience aligns with the specific needs of the leader and can help them develop their potential.
Multinational organizations carry higher levels of responsibility and accountability as they impact a wider variety of stakeholders. Naturally, the leaders of such businesses must be well-equipped to counter challenges thrown their way, whether the organizational changes or external disruptions, like slowing economies. They need experienced global coaches and mentors that have led by example to help them navigate the future.