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Managing across nations. Technology-based projects in multinational environments

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2 Author(s)
I. Kruglianskas ; Sao Paulo Univ., Brazil ; H. J. Thamhain

Organizations that manage projects across international borders often find it frustratingly difficult to implement their well thought-out plans. For these multinational projects also need to be unified among different business processes, management styles, operational support systems and organizational cultures. Such cross-cultural management practices are quite common in today's global business environment with multinational outsourcing, joint ventures and alliances. While unified project direction toward technology transfer, integration, and business objectives usually comes from one central location, they need to be effectively communicated and “managed” across international lines and organizational cultures. Managers have to deal with differences in languages, time zones, organizational and personal cultures, policies, regulations, business processes and political climates. Yet another managerial challenge is the complexity of today's projects and their support environments. Technology has become a significant factor for almost every business. Information technology provides a powerful set of tools and techniques in support of multinational project operations. Multimedia conference calls, e-mail, fax, groupware and Internet web sites are just a few examples. These tools have the ability to link organizations across geographic regions and time zones. They also help to partially neutralize cultural differences

Published in:

IEEE Potentials  (Volume:19 ,  Issue: 2 )