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Summary of article two full pargraph

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Summary of article two full pargraphs Team Case Study: Leveling the Playing Field on Cross-cultural teams Directions: Team Discussion: By Thursday, participate in your team’s assigned wiki to analyze this case and prepare your team paper. Team Paper: Prepare a 3 – 4 page team paper that responds to the two case questions, discusses insights gained from the case analysis, and evaluates team effectiveness. One team member should post the team paper by Sunday midnight. Case Study Leveling the Playing Field on Cross-cultural teams – Molinsky (2012) Multicultural teams are ubiquitous in today’s business environment, and a lot has been written about them. What is often lost in the discussion of multicultural teams, however, is the experience of individuals — especially individuals from East Asian cultures — who are at a disadvantage on teams with Western cultural norms and English as a lingua franca. The following case is a pretty typical one: Originally from China, Jin had recently started a new job as a management consultant in New York City and was immediately placed on two different project teams with individuals from the U.S., Germany and the Netherlands. Jin was keen on making a positive impression, but felt ill-equipped to do so, especially in this mostly Western multicultural team environment. Jin’s fellow consultants would express their opinions with assertiveness, confidence and enthusiasm. They would speak out of turn, often interrupting each other, and sometimes speaking over each other. In China, communication was very different and had more of a turn-taking quality: one person would speak — typically the most senior member of the team — and others would politely listen. After that person had spoken, others could contribute as well, though always in ways that would not threaten the “face” of their superior. Jin’s different communication style showed up on his performance review — as a liability. His manager used words such as “lacking confidence,” “not a team player,” and “not willing to contribute to team discussions.” But Jin had thought he was all of those things — confident, a team player and willing to contribute to group discussions — and even made efforts to adapt his style when working with this Western-dominant team. These efforts went unnoticed. Jin felt hurt by the news and wanted to figure out where things could have gone wrong. He wanted to succeed in his new position, but felt stymied by the team culture. He felt embarrassed about making a cultural mistake and about his linguistic ineptitude, frustrated and resentful about having to adapt in the first place, and also alienated from the group. Unfortunately, Jin’s experience is a common one for individuals working on cross-cultural teams. But team leaders can avoid these problems and help all team members succeed by focusing on these four tips: Tip #1: Increase awareness of the challenges faced by team members from other cultures The first thing that anyone who works on a multicultural team can do is to become more aware of the challenges faced by team members from the non-dominant culture. This means appreciating the psychological challenges people like Jin can face in such settings. Increasing awareness also means learning to interpret behavior from outside of one’s own cultural perspective. For example, in Jin’s case, it might mean understanding that a lack of active, vocal participation in team meetings does not mean he is not a team player; rather, it likely means that he is simply trying to be the best team player he can be, but from a Chinese cultural perspective. Tip #2: Make the team norms explicit It is rare for teams to explicitly discuss standards and expectations for effective communication within the team. However, it is critical to do so in

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