Creating efficient and high-performing teams requires the members in a defined group to work together to do their very best. This requires trust and cooperation, which is challenging even for those who come from the same cultures and share the same physical working space. ”Team building” means that you go through the process for establishing a Code of Conduct for your team in the fields of meeting culture, cultural intelligence and communication.
A code of conduct is an agreement made between everyone in a company, an organization, a department or a project group makes. A code of conduct should include the activities and routines shared by the group with the intention of avoiding communication errors to ensure effective working for all involved. No matter what team you work in, both time and energy is saved by having clearly defined rules.
A code of conduct mirrors the needs of the organization and can therefore differ between organisations. In large and mid-sized companies, there are different departments (for example IT, R&D, development, sales, production, administration and HR) which work in completely different ways, so an overarching set of rules for meetings, communication, and production processes is important to avoid creating unnecessary friction. Where there are employees from several different countries and cultures in the workplace, things become even more complicated.
How much you want to control the means of communication varies. In a small office or an environment where everyone shares the same culture, you can go far by focusing on creating a shared view of meetingculture by using the Chadberg scale. If the situation is more complex, it is valuable/important to take the time to anchor the contents of the code of conduct in the areas where it is needed.
Establishing a code of conduct can also mean implementing policy documents that already exist. It can be about the values of the company or an equal treatment plan that must be “brought to life” for the policy to be followed. In these cases, the focus isn’t on what is to be done but rather who will do it and how.
Global teams can be large or consist of only of a handful of members. In some cases, the team meets regularly in person, in other cases the members have never met and must rely on virtual communication. The members may come from a similar cultural backgrounds or represent many cultural identities. Here a shared virtual etiquette agreed by the members have agreed upon is essential (netiquette).