Cultural diversity, virtual teams

Cultural Diversity as a Strength on Virtual Teams

by Andrea Keil, Dirk Doppelfeld, Dr. Ralf Friedrich


Fast-evolving technology and innovations in collaboration systems make it easier to compose teams with members who are chosen by their expertise but might be from different locations.

This not only means different time zones, languages, or workflow, but also means a variety of unforeseen cultural disparities.

Embracing cultural diversity not only helps to include remote-working team members but it also offers opportunities for all team members to express their individual strengths and limitations, regardless of their ethnic or cultural affiliation.

Adding to the complexity of intercultural project teams are the limitations of virtual communication. Lack of nonverbal communication reduces messages to their factual content and lacks the interpersonal level.

Can you imagine a group of people working together without motivation, humor, affection, or trust?

Intentional team activities are necessary to compensate for the reduced personal interaction of distributed teams. This will initiate team spirit and allow team members to connect across cultures….


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