Virtual Culture Coaching

Today’s organisations want to attract and retain their industry’s most talented people whose experience and skills will drive their company’s success. For many, their Diversity & Inclusion strategy means being committed to growing the next generation of women leaders. Our client, a multinational software design company, is one such company focused on advancing women in the workplace across the tech industry.

The Challenge: Recently promoted into the post of EMEA General Business Director, their candidate had previously been focused exclusively on business in UK and Ireland. Given the demands of her new hectic travel schedule, it was felt beneficial to offer her virtual culture coaching focused on developing business relationships and managing remote colleagues in the following countries: Middle East, Russia, South Africa, France, Germany, Spain and Netherlands.

Alternative Description
Alternative Description

Our Solution:  We proposed three Virtual Culture Coaching sessions delivered by video-conference. Prior to the first session, the candidate was invited to complete “The International Profiler”, a web-based psychometric questionnaire.

The Profiler develops an individual’s ability to operate effectively in unfamiliar cultural contexts. It is based on an International Competency Framework which is derived from extensive multicultural research and practical experience of international managers. It measures the emphasis and energy an individual gives to 10 competencies, with 22 associated skills, attitudes and knowledge areas. This was followed, at the first coaching session, with a thorough debrief with our licensed trainer and the process lead to a Personal Development Plan as an output.

Prior to the next two planned sessions, the candidate had a telephone needs assessment and spoke about her forthcoming trips to Kuwait, Dubai, and Qatar.

The delegate asked questions about specific incidents and how to handle them as a female executive - particularly as she had previously received some poor advice on greeting and hosting Middle Eastern male clients that had led to awkwardness. She also wanted to know about the practicalities of travelling alone or the need to be accompanied by male colleagues in Muslim countries. From this our Cultural Trainer was able to prepare the two bespoke coaching sessions.

The Result:  From the feedback received, the candidate stressed how much her confidence and self-awareness had increased to adapt to working in particular intercultural contexts. In particular, she was enthusiastic about knowing more of the motivations of her international colleagues and how best to manage these. The company continues to purposefully encourage more women to take the leadership route and systematically offers them the mentoring and culture coaching to support them.

“Wonderful programme and a very skilled trainer”

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