Global team’s success requires the ability of their organization leaders and policies to motivate each member to towards achievement of objectives. Virtual teams that optimize objectives leads to effective results and should be met with continued inspiration and motivation that would be found in a traditional co-located team environment. Leaders should be prepared for the challenges of the global team such as relevant rewards and recognition, global mindset, cultural intelligence and team development and cohesiveness virtually. Social distance and cultural variance add to the challenge of a global organization maintaining motivation towards objectives, project outcomes and innovation.
This reflection is a look at how organizations and some of the commonalities and success that have been observed in motivating their teams, understanding their culture and values and how that is translated to the team environment both collocated and virtually. Virtually rewarding and recognizing successes within global teams, monitoring motivation and all of its forms are discussed in a reflection of what makes great companies understand what is required to be successful with teams and forming a strong organization culture of positive team environment. This is a beginning discussion on a large topic and reflection on the considerations of how Global organizations can attract and retain top talent from around the world.
Motivating employees through a combination of their pay systems, rewards and recognition are forces behind the team members behaviours required to work toward achievement of organization, team and project objectives
As discussed in class and presented by Dr. Blake Escudier, virtual teams have the ability to perform more successfully than co located teams. Access to top talent globally has a huge impact on this success. It is inspiring to see the leadership and organizations that have built strong diverse teams offering engagement and autonomy through strong organizational culture and personality of the company focusing on leading with a competitive advantage and strong people who are encouraged bring ideas forward with a trust and autonomy to take some risks.
Global teams increase diversity within the team environment and have the capability continuously improve and offer larger product diversification based on the intellectual properties around the world. Some of the challenges of Global teams as discussed in the virtual classroom is the concept of motivation and engagement and maintaining this throughout the team to optimize the results and meet all objectives. “Driving performance by way of effectiveness warrants two conditions, communication and coordination, both of which have been linked to the subjective meaning of effectiveness” (Piccoli and Ives, 2000). Understanding the motivational needs of the team is a challenge for some leaders when dealing with global teams as we experienced in the Fred Bailey case
Investigating motivation at work and teams is an extensive topic. There is a connection with the work of Dan Pink, and I find his thoughts and writing impressive and have applied many of them to past team environments. This leads to curiosity about how they can apply to the global team environment. When planning an innovation strategy, the science supports the idea as stated by Pink of “removing money from the table as an option by paying the team members enough to make it a nonissue.” (Pink, 2011) In order for an organization to attract and retain top talent from around the world, motivating employees through a combination of their pay systems, rewards and recognition are all forces behind the team members behaviours that are required to work to achieve objectives. His work talks about how pay motivation works for tasks, but his opinions and theories are that they do not work towards innovation and strategy which is what the challenge of managing a strong global team entail.
Aligning motivators to organizational culture sends a message on what the company values, requires there are intrinsic motivators for innovative ideas, plans and products available to team members around the world. These intrinsic motivations would vary based on multi cultural diversity and cultural intelligence of the organization would be a requirement. Alignment with an organizations strategy encourages innovation from intrinsic rewards and the need to have mastery in the role, autonomy and a feeling of purpose in order to drive change and achieve results.
Mindful that compensation is directly linked to an employee’s livelihood and if this entails unbalanced reward systems such as pay or benefits, employees will eventually leave an organization and as a result take the innovative focus with them.(Pink, 2009) Herzberg, Maslow, Vroom and Daniel Pink all have proven money is a temporary motivator; employees will eventually think they are underpaid; the need for the Total Rewards concept of finding the best balance between extrinsic and intrinsic for teams becomes even more critical as Global teams needs and desires vary based on cultural preferences. People respond to situations when making comparisons and want situations to be fair, wanting the value of their input and output to be equal.
Vrooms Expectancy Theory helps explain motivation and its relationship for a total rewards strategy within the global organization. Essentially, employees should exert greater work effort if they have reason to expect that it will result in a reward that they value. The combination of the outcome of how much an employee wants a reward, the belief effort leads to performance and the assessment that the performance will lead to reward. Rewarding an employee with time to learn and develop such as an MBA program can also occur if influenced by possession of skills and credential development. Additional rewards such as availability of the right resources, availability of crucial information and getting the required support for completing the job, time to focus on growth are also options for global teams to consider.
There is a trend of organizations stepping away from traditional approaches of compensation as they begin to understand a holistic approach and understand the motivation behind compensation with cultural intelligence. Rewards and Recognition plans with the intent to motivate must also take into account the individual and team motivators within the organization. As stated by Dan Pink in his book Drive (2009) people have either intrinsic or extrinsic motivation, where intrinsically motivated people are driven by the joy of accomplishing a task. Extrinsically motivated people are driven by money and praise. To Dan Pink’s point, the extrinsically motivated people will experience a surge in their motivation to continue to achieve goals once the reward has been provided, which leads to think and understand the importance of global team leaders to continuously review incentive plans to keep employees motivated around the world.
Creating motivated virtual teams is a key element to success of an innovative business strategy. It is very important for leaders to set the tone that incentives must be earned through effort. In my experience I have seen situations where top performers felt demotivated upon learning that their reward was same level as that of other staff who did not put the same effort towards the goals. Rewards may have in that sense some counterproductive effects when not established properly and may have high impact on culture. Recognition programs are important for high-performers and innovators are guided by autonomy, mastery and purpose as discussed by Dan Pink therefore focusing on intrinsic motivators should be a critical component of team motivational strategy for an organization to focus on continuous improvement.
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