Research

We at UC take a push-pull approach to research. We push foundational topics to you. Currently, there are ten, with three in the pipeline.

And we pull topics from you. By asking you what challenges you’re facing as colleagues collaborating in a multinational environment. First read Pull. Then send us the analysis of your situation: pull@understand-culture.com


Overengineering

“We know that German engineers are top-notch. We have them as colleagues. However, they tend to overengineer. It’s expensive. And it’s not always what our customers have asked for, or even want. How can we get our German colleagues to engineer to customer needs?”

Get to 90%

“In so many cases our American colleagues seem perfectly satisfied with an 80% technical solution. Ok, we Germans don’t always have to aim for 99%. But, how can we get our team in the U.S. to strive for at least 90%?”

Judgement calls

“Often our colleagues in the U.S. follow certain processes and procedures slavishly, even when it is obvious that the situation requires deviation. Why are they not capable of making the necessary judgement calls?”

Undisciplined

“On the American side there are far more processes and procedues than on our German side. And everything is documented in great detail. Yet time and again our American colleagues don’t follow what has been documented. Can someone please explain this to us?”

Unemotional. Detached.

“When our German colleagues give presentations they are so unemotional, scientific, almost detached. Why? Is that convincing in the Gemran context?”

Micromanagement

“We Germans in the team like and respect our American team-lead. However, she wants to be involved in the details our work. She is micromanaging us and we don’t like it. We hear the same complaint from German colleagues in other teams. What’s going on here?”

Provide too much information

“It appears to us German colleagues that our American colleagues give their customers far too much information about how we do our work, about or internal processes. And, they are eager to permit customers to influence how we do our work. Why do our US-colleagues do this?”

Too early. Too deep.

“Our American team-lead gets involved too early and too deeply in resolving conflicts amongst us colleagues in the team. He does not handle the situations in a neutral, moderating way. Why?”

Escalate so quickly

“Why do our American colleagues escalate a team-internal conflict so quickly up to our team-lead? Why don’t they show a little patience with resolving the problems among ourselves?