Why international teams are a company’s greatest asset

Traditional ways of working have been transformed over the past decade, leading to a more collaborative and international work environment. The days of centralized working environments might be gone, but what impact has this had on the organizations with teams who are now distributed far and wide?  

Forging a global village  

A company’s culture is one of the most important factors contributing to business success. An organization’s culture defines the ways of thinking and behaviors of people in a company and their shared values and beliefs.  

Diversity in a company’s culture has proven to be beneficial for organizations. A strong culture and high diversity can position companies for future growth and success, attracting more clients thanks to cultural connections and a better understanding of the clients’ needs. In fact, diverse teams make better business decisions 87% of the time.  

Conversely, failure to understand a client’s culture and working methods can cause losses to the company; businesses often overlook understanding local needs, such as implementing diverse management or identifying cultural differences. 

Fostering a diverse team not only benefits the company, but its talent too. Diverse companies encourage their people to share their ideas and perspectives while increasing their levels of creativity. Furthermore, diverse teams could potentially enhance the growth of soft skills by providing the opportunity to develop characteristics such as curiosity, adaptability, and interpersonal skills.  

However, the greatest advantage of diverse teams is that thanks to cultural diversity, everyone in the company feels welcome and free to be themselves without fear of being judged. Sharing ideas freely and feeling more engaged helps to create a prime environment for talent to grow and progress in their professional careers. 

Deeper talent pools 

Global organizations are not only more accessible for their clients, but also for talent across the world. 76% of job seekers believe diversity is crucial when considering companies and job offers, and the potential for international hiring opportunities means that companies can become more competitive in the search for talent.  

When location ceases to be an obstacle, international companies become more agile in their recruitment practices and can attract candidates solely based on their knowledge and suitability for the role, rather than their ability to relocate or where they are located. In turn, this creates a more diverse and broader team with different expertise working towards a common goal. Studies have shown that 41% of business decision-makers  think that remote working will increase revenue and profit growth, and 42% believe that international remote working will attract greater talent than that currently available in domestic markets.  

According to a 2020 survey, 81% of people working in the tech industry said that they will be willing to move to a different country if their income and employment status are not affected. Furthermore, 63% of respondents believe that a candidate should be chosen for their skills and not for their location. 66% also believe that people should be entitled to a great career regardless of where they live. Global teams can therefore be the best solution for many businesses, not only for access to a broader talent pool but for the opportunity to retain top profiles. 

Diversity drives innovation and growth  

It’s no secret that internal innovation is a good idea for businesses: studies have found that companies that are leaders in innovation grow 2.6 times faster than the industry average. Sustainable, technology-driven innovation approaches enable companies to survive disruption and thrive in unprecedented circumstances. Approximately 85% of leaders believe that innovation will be a strong component of their organization in the future; implementing innovation into a business’ culture helps to differentiate from competitors and achieve organizational optimization. 

For organizations, diversity is not only a social value; diversity can be a significant driver of innovation. Diversity is the intersection of different concepts and challenges, leading to innovative ideas, the avoidance of cultural mistakes, and an effective way to address competitive marketplaces and client demands. However, a study over 400 leaders shown that only 32% of companies  have a budget for their diversity hiring goals, highlighting a significant gap in companies innovation capacities. 

Companies shaped by people from different countries, ethnicities and backgrounds have an advantage. Clothing retail company Gap Inc. is ranked as the world’s most diverse and inclusive organization of 2021 according to Refinitiv’s Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) Index, and is expecting net sales growth of 30% in 2021 compared to 2020.  

The idea that we all deserve to belong — and on our own terms — is core to who we are and how we run our businessIt will take all of us working together to create lasting change. We will devote all that is necessary because there is simply no exception to inclusion.’’  

Sonia Sygal, Gap Inc. CEO

Gap Inc. demonstrates its beliefs about diversity and inclusion though different actions; racial equality training, donations to support educational infrastructure and scholarships, and high diversity in its Rotational Management Program, among many others, are some of the steps Gap Inc. has taken so far.  

International teams have proven to be great assets for companies due to the multitude of perspectives, cultures and ideas that result in innovative and inclusive solutions for their clients. From increasing diversity through recruiting talent in different countries, to new ideas that drive innovation, and tailored services and products to fulfill consumer needs, companies have discovered that they can retain more talent and improve the company’s performance in the marketplace. 

At Mantu, we help business leaders to overcome adaptability and transformation challenges with a strong focus on culture, organization, management, and people. Learn more about our Talent Solutions at Mantu.com. 

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