Lisa Blackshaw Howell

April 11, 2021

Growing Up

The road ahead can be straight and narrow or take you far?

Time to shake things up and get GLOCAL? 

I was born in Germany then returned and raised in the UK and love working in a business which regularly interacts with multiple countries around the globe. When I was growing up I was fascinated by people and difference.

This themed stayed with me right through to studying International Business on a Masters Degree course and scoring the highest % on the exam for my cohort!! By this time I was not only still fascinated by people and difference but how this all comes together (or not) in business, locally and internationally with mergers and acquisitions. At this stage I had worked for US, Japanese and British Companies and seen where global power and presence could be harnessed really effectively when done correctly in local markets. Cross fertislising the human resources and cultures within was always the tricky part but the most necessary!

GLOBAL + LOCAL = GLOCAL : think globally, act locally

Glocal, an adjective, by definition, is “reflecting or characterized by both local and global considerations.” The term “glocal management” is a sense of “think globally, act locally” is used in the business strategies of companies

This term became more apparent to me when working for a Japanese international company and was the start of my journey into Change and Transformational Management. When you give time and allow understanding for those within organisations to understand the difference a change is bringing and what merging with other cultures means to their employees and teams, it is truly amazing what can happen. This theory seems simple; however, most organisations rush the people elements, the engagement required and the acknowledgment that an ending was real. They expect employees to face forward and embrace the new beginning without having time to let go of the old ways of working. To readjust to the new and integrate fully in order to serve their joint customers fully with an understanding of what their new organisations means by embracing the differences. This doesn’t mean pace is hampered, rather the opposite, without doing this the results are often hampered, and some leaders and employees can even sabotage progress! Awareness work brings acceptance of why things are the way they are, not suspicion and scepticism of different behaviours. It speeds up the relationship and harnesses the very best if global power with local customs to serve customers in the most appropriate ways.  

One of Blackshaw Howell Consulting’s Network Partners Klaus Schmitt lives and works in Shanghai and delivers cross cultural learning across the globe. He supported a UK – China project in January to enable multiple stakeholders from different cultures to understand difference in order to collaborate more effectively together and deliver the end goals swiftly and collaboratively. Klaus poses the following benefits to investing in cross cultural awareness:

  • “Raising your awareness on cross-cultural communication will make you comprehend the concept of culture and understand what unseen parts of a culture may cause misunderstandings.
  • Furthermore, you might be able to identify what values distinguish people from various cultural backgrounds and develop a better understanding of the mutual cultural mindset. 
  • In addition, you will get some skills of how to communicate and cooperate with colleagues and customers from different cultures as well as how to establish collaborative relationships and effectively express opinions towards them.” (Klaus Schmitt)

“Your communication is only as good as your understanding of the person you’re communicating with”  (Dr. Tony Alessandra)

 At BHC we offer a personalised opportunity for leaders / business owners and their teams to work with cross cultural facilitators and experts around the globe linked to up-to-date research of changing business and world cultures and practices. This enables them and their teams to learn and capitalise on pivoting to thrive and achieve powerful, sustained success individually, in their teams and their organisations locally and globally. Would you like to learn how to maximise cross cultural difference to harness competitive edge during times of continued uncertainty? Difference can be leveraged incrementally and powerfully, Globally and Locally or to coin a phrase GLOCALLY!

To learn more book a complementary discovery call today: 07968 097052

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