Career Woman

How to organize work in a diverse team

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While traditional, established businesses adjust their communication activities for a specific region or country based on cultural and social factors, companies such as ours divide markets by the culture of consumption to a lesser extent. Language becomes a defining criterion.

We differentiate the audience based on the language they speak. In our case, that’s the language in which a user feels the most comfortable to watch tournaments or consume other text or video content.

The need to expand to new markets and deeply understand their specifics to cater to international audiences requires having specialists with different cultural backgrounds and origins.

Diversity is a competitive advantage; remote work is an opportunity

I work at WePlay Esports media holding, which has offices in the USA, China and Ukraine. We combine the best practice of esports, media and entertainment to provide cutting edge products and services worldwide. We have over 400 employees in the company and just in the communications team alone we have people from 11 countries.  So, we literally represent an international organization.

Research shows that diverse teams can have a positive impact on an organization’s operations. For instance, in 2016, researchers analyzed 21,980 companies from 91 countries and suggested that the presence of women on company boards and in leadership positions may improve a firm’s performance.

An organization’s commercial success could be tied to the absence of discrimination against female leaders and greater efficiency due to the functional diversity associated with the presence of women.

At the same time, the research team notes that the work is just a snapshot and warns against a loose interpretation of results. Gathering extra data to construct a panel would help “distinguish causality from mere correlation.”

The analysis didn’t reveal the effect of gender quotas for the board of directors on the company performance. However, they suggest that the benefits for companies pursuing policies that facilitate women’s career advancement can be significant.

The global job market rules are changing for women

The rules of the game in the global job market are changing. According to Women in Business report 2020 by Grant Thornton, a network of independent assurance, tax, and advisory firms, the proportion of women in senior management globally was 29%. This figure, a record since 2004, was attained last year and has remained stable.

We understand the importance of combating stereotypes in the mind of the public. The company is launching Girls Got Game, a project designed to debunk the myth that esports is a man’s world. The project is a series of interviews with girls who have dedicated their lives and careers to esports.

A member of our editorial staff, Albina Krugliak, is managing the project. Guys from the team supported Albina’s idea and are working on Girls Got Game along with her, which is great.

(You can apply for participation by writing an email to Albina at [email protected] or hashtagging #GirlsGotGame on social media.)

Diversity adds a competitive edge

Diversity can give a team a competitive edge. People pitch fresh ideas and look at a situation at an unusual angle just because they come from another environment. They think differently.

Research and advisory company Gartner suggests looking for specialists with different thinking styles, habits, and perspectives to reach ‘cognitive’ diversity that allows the team to perform better.

Working-from-home mode, which became a new normal for many businesses, helps business transcend borders when hiring talent.

Remote work gives us a chance to create international teams. I doubt half of the people would have joined the company if we worked the way we used to a year ago. We wouldn’t even be mentally ready to consider candidates from other countries, especially from Western Europe and the Americas. We didn’t realize one can work so effectively at a distance.

There is no point in being afraid of reaching out to specialists from foreign markets. The changes in the global labor market caused by the pandemic may motivate our companies to start counting on employees they may not have considered before. Here and now, in our company, in particular, we gather teams of the future that are ready for the realities of our time,” concludes Alena.

How to make diverse teams productive?

Leaders question themselves on how to ensure that the team of people with various cultural backgrounds, values, languages, and schedules can cooperate well. Emphasize the common goal of each of the team members.

  • Encourage colleagues to tell about their achievements, large and small ones. You can host weekly meetings during which each team member summarises the completed work.
  • Create an atmosphere of openness: everyone should feel free to share their opinions and ideas even though they may be drastically different.
  • Make sure everyone knows each other’s work hours and assign tasks beforehand. Adopting messaging software for businesses capable of showing a person’s local time, statuses, or message notification settings helps build a smooth workflow.
  • Organize training sessions on diversity and inclusion to address biases and break stereotypes within a workplace.

You have to hear others and realize people come from different backgrounds and cultures. There might be a misunderstanding in certain questions, but that’s not a tragedy; that’s ok. It’s possible to make people’s uniqueness work for a common good.

About Alena Dalska-Latosiewicz

Alena Dalska-Latosiewicz is Сhief Communications Officer at WePlay Esports, an esports media holding company with key offices in the USA,China and Ukraine. The holding company combines the best practices of esports,media and entertainment to provide cutting-edge products and servicesworldwide. Most of our employees work in Ukraine and we already have over 400employees in the company.

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