5 Tips for Project Managers to Manage a Diverse Team

Workplaces have become increasingly diverse today. This diversity is good for the organization. A diverse workgroup is a catalyst for new ideas and innovation. High performance project teams not only need specialists from different fields, it also requires people of different personalities.

Project managers need to be comfortable with managing a diverse team. They should know how to manage a group of people of diverse backgrounds. Here are five effective for project managers to reduce barriers across culture and borders, and address the concerns of a diverse group.

1. Know about Cultural and Religious Holidays

People around the world have different holidays. Project managers who are tasked with managing a diverse team located at different countries should be sensitive to the cultural and religious holidays of the team members. As a team leader, the project manager should be aware of the religious and New Year holidays that are celebrated by the team members. One tool that can help you to become aware of the holidays that are celebrated around the world is

2. Make Use of Online Tools for Improved Coordination

A product manager should also make use of online collaboration software for task management. Using the online work management software will allow improved sharing of knowledge between team members. The online collaboration software will help team members belonging to different cultures and religions to openly communicate with each other.

3. Respect Cultural Values of the Diverse Team Members

Different people have different cultural values that must be respected. For instance, people from Japan and China are culturally more reserved. The same is the case with people belonging to Middle Eastern or South Asian region. So, just because a foreign worker speaks perfect English does not mean that his or her cultural values are the same as yours. As a manger, it’s important that you research about the cultural and religious background of the person and then take care to respect their values.

4. Keep Communication Line Open for All

Effective communication is essential for the success of a project team. A manager should ensure that the communication line is open for all. There should be no bias when it comes to listening to concerns of the team members. Every employee regardless of ethnicity, gender, or religion should be allowed to openly air their grievances, concerns, and ideas.

Free flow of information, thoughts, and feelings will create an atmosphere of sincerity and openness. This will lead to a feeling of inclusion whereby everyone will feel being part of a team on equal footing. If they are not made to feel part of the team, understanding won’t develop among the team members, which is required for effective teamwork.

5. Create a Common Culture at the Workplace

Lastly, project managers should strive to create a common culture at the workplace. This requires creating rules and standards that are applicable for all. A common guideline should be developed for things like conflict resolution, day-to-day conversation, and meetings.

Diversity provides real value when it is properly exploited. It can bring diverse ideas and perspectives. The above tips will help project managers to effectively manage a diverse team ensuring successful project outcomes.