Five Tips for Native English Speakers when Working with Global Teams

When we look at many successful companies today, we see similar trends: expansion, globalization, a desire to reach beyond national limits and grow into the international market. The future of work is global, and most likely, remote. By creating international teams that work together across cultures to accomplish well-defined goals, companies improve their potential.

Native English speakers should develop co-working strategies when working alongside international colleagues. Most global teams operate in English as their primary language, a potential pitfall that could become a problem if not addressed properly. While public speaking and communication skills are universal, non-native-English-speakers working in an English speaking environment are more likely to need help. Let’s see what you can do to facilitate the integration process and manage a successful global team.

Tip #1. Listen actively

There are different ways in which we can listen. Sometimes, we might listen to understand; other times, we might listen for enjoyment or to learn something. And in most cases, we listen to obtain necessary information. When helping your international colleagues within your company’s global team, you must do all of the above, argues Jamie at review. Not only should you listen to understand, but you should also listen to get information and learn something valuable.

Active listening is a multicultural skill. Not allowing yourself to be distracted by your own thoughts when your colleagues are talking is extremely important. If you don’t respect this rule, you might be unable to correctly assess and process the information that they’ve conveyed. Watch people’s reactions on video calls, and make sure the environment you’re setting up before the call is inclusive.

Tip #2. Encourage questions, and use simple phrases and words

Checking in with your colleagues is another effective strategy. Make sure you keep it casual and ask this question, “Does anybody have any questions?” part of your routine. Make sure that you give them space to be themselves and ask questions if needed. Let them know from the outset that there are no wrong questions, and that avoiding asking a question might be harmful to the whole team. Be supportive and ask them if they’re on board. Ask them if they’re good to go or if they need more time to process the information presented. Be patient and open.

Do not use jargon or phrases that might be too complicated for them to understand. Stick to a simple-ish vocabulary and use simple terminology.

Tip #3. Take it down a notch

Some native English speakers are hard to follow for native English speakers, let alone for their international colleagues. If you’re one of them, take it down a notch. Reduce your speaking speed to make yourself clear to everybody on the team. Speaking more slowly might also help you put your thoughts in order. I know this might be uncomfortable to hear, but please consider it. Speaking quickly can be truly problematic for others and it won’t help you get the message across.

Tip #4. Give your team members plenty of warning that they’ll be speaking

Speaking publicly in another language can be quite stressful. Imagine if you had to deliver a speech on sophisticated concepts in another language. Even in your own language you might be struggling to get it all right!

So let your colleagues know well in advance when they’ll be speaking.

Tip #5. Follow-up

If you have team members that are mostly quiet during meetings, follow up with them after the call. Never call them out during the meeting! When following up, ask them if there’s something you can do to facilitate the integration process, or if there’s something on their end that could help. Let them know that there’s no pressure, that this process is normal and it might take a while to get used to working in a global team.

Wrapping Up

These are some of the most important tips to help you facilitate the integration process for a global team. Being an active listener is highly important, but so is using less jargon and slowing down. Letting your team know in advance that they’ll be asked to speak is another great strategy. Lastly, don’t forget to follow up and check in with your international colleagues.

About the author:

Charlie Svensson is fast, engaging dissertation writer skilled in content writing and blogging. The favorite topics of his posts are education, social media, marketing, SEO, motivation blogging and self-growth. He also offers essay writer help for students worldwide. Plus, he’s got excellent adaptability of skills to reach diverse audiences.

This was originally posted on SpeakerHub Skillcamp.

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