1. Introduction and Purpose
Sharing of knowledge across the border is becoming very widespread phenomenon. Companies are well aware that hidden in their disperes, global operations is a treasure trove of ideas and capabilities for innovation(Wilson & Doz, 2012). Therefore, working with multicultural groups is getting more and more common very rapidly since last decade. However, in global teams, team memebers have different feed back techniques, different uniqueness levels and different communication patterns. People belonging to different cultures have difference in values, geography, ethencity,belief system and lauguage.These difference can lead to cuture clash . In this paper I am writing about where I find myself in a cultural and team work map and my reflections about my placement thereon.
I have judged myself with reference to my placement in high and low context cultures, cultural paradigm , my preffered and performed roles in my team keeping in mind Belbin‘s team roles and my position in Johari window. Purpose of this assignmnet is to judge where I find myself right now in a cutural map in context of team work and to bring improvement in myself if I am away from the normal scale .The actual purpose of this assignment is to save me from cultural clash by giving a chance to get self-awareness and to make us conscious about behaving accordingly for future interactions. Just like these two rivers in the below mentioned picture are merging, people from different cultures should merge the same way. These two rivers have different native base but after merger nobody can find any clash between them.
Below mentioned is my self assessment and reflections thereon.
2.1 First impression
My first impression on my team members was that I am trust worthy. When asked, they answered that they made this impression from my body laungauage and my tone of voice. I believe that my such impression was made because of my uniqueness levels i.e. personality culture and human natur. After practicaly working with them my group as well as me have assessed that I focused on working collectively as i believe collectivism is the key to group success.
2.2 Assessment with reference to Communication Patterns
On the cultural map I find my self as the person who works better in the middle of high and low context. l worked more better after every next team meeting because in meetings we discussed our desired outcome by spoken words and I shared all my ideas and problems with my team. Secondly, I was not fully relying on what was shared among us through emails. But I cannot say that I am just a high conext person because, contrary to high context couumincation patterns, I wanted detailed information about the assignment and I used direct speech during the whole correspondance .It helped me to exchange ideas quickly . Looking further into communication pattern ,I find myself as a person who is more task oriented than people oreinted.I prefer to do work first.Relations are aligned after task completion.
In gropu, I only talked about assignment till the work is finished. After submition of assignemnt I discussed my personal things and hobbies with them. My time orientation is ploy cronic. I was working on the assignment as well as I was seeing the other’s part also. More over, I was comparing my work with the wok done by other groups in the class. I kept on updating the absent team mebers about activities (relevent to assignment) conducted in class through a social network simultaneously. Hence I can say that my communication pattren is neither high context nor low context.Its somewhere in the middle of both.
2.3 Assessment regarding Placement in Belbin’s team roles
My preferred team role is team worker. The reason of saying so is that I remain mild and gentle. I like to work in depth but I am not willing to work in pressure and tried to avoid working under stressful situations. I played the role of team worker in practical. We revised the work plans many times initialy and I accepted that without much resistance which indicates that I am easy to be influenced. I remained mild and friendly. I worked on that part of assignment which required extensive out of the box research and long working hours. My second preference is the role of resource investigator. I always look to find smart opportunites or methods to get work done effectively, efficiently and economically.
I performed the role of resource investigator in passive manner in the group. I was enthusiastic in suggesting my fellow colleagues which part of assignment should be done by whom. I also shared few articles with them.I guided one memeber about how he can do his part more accuratly. However I was little over optimistic because we spent alot more hours on assignment then i initially predicted. My third preference was to perform the role of Shaper because I am having tendencies to fit things into frame and strives to get the action start immediately.
However I could not execute this role in my group as the assignment work was very dynamic and it was being revised too quickly. Secondly, one of my fellow colleagues was performing this role better than me. My third performed role was of finisher. I proof read the document many times, found the errors and gave ideas to team members to revise few workings. I was not willing to rely on other team members for final proof reading and I was worried for the acuracy of assignment. I focused to create a balance in three roles that I performed in group and tried to avoid overlapping. However team worker was the frequently performed role.
2.4 Johari Window
The Johari Window, named after its inventors, Joseph Luft and Harry Ingham, is a model that provides a dynamic framework for understanding and improving self-awareness. Helping one to become more self-reflective, to learn about oneself, and to become more therapeutic is an exercise in self-awareness(South, 2007). In the context of Johari window, my arena (open area), has increased and I became aware of blind spots. Eventually my hidden areas are disclosed. During the group work, I experienced that my open arena has been gradually broadened and my blind spot has been subsequently decreased after every next working step.
The combination of roles i.e. two from people oriented frame (resource investigator and team worker) and one from task oriented frame (shaper) shows that I am not on any of extreme on cutural map. On the culture paradigm, I find myself on the middle, niether too weak nor too strong. I can infer that I am flexible, observant and non-judgmental. l Communicated respect and sake knowledge and understanding. I am in the last stage of confrontation and entring into adjustment phase. I am passing through W-model quickly because of level of education and support from family and network i.e. swede friends.In Johari’s window, my arena has broaden which indicates that I am more self aware after completion of group assignment.
Wilson, K. & Doz, Y.L. (2012). 10 Rules for Managing Global Innovation. Harvard business review, 85 (10), 84-90. South, B. (2007). Combining mandala and the Johari Window: An exercise in self-awareness. Teaching & Learning in Nursing,2 (1), 8.