VIRTUAL TEAM COLLABORATION

How can we deliver a virtual program to boost performance in our growing number of global project teams?

 

THE CONTEXT

Amec Foster Wheeler is a UK-based global engineering and project management company supporting industries from energy to minerals and infrastructure. It has teams in 55 countries.


THE CHALLENGE

Amec Foster Wheeler needs to continue to support its global clients as they grow their operations globally. This means centring some of its global IT, Project Management and HR services in particular hubs around the world. But for that it needs its people to be able work across national, cultural, organisational and functional boundaries. Typically, that means working virtually, using email and conferencing, rather than face to face.

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HOW WE RESPONDED

We developed a programme for Amec Foster Wheeler that enabled individuals to become aware of their own communications styles and how their cultures had influenced them. It went on to share best practices in building trust, inclusion and commitment across cultures, as well as making the right choices of technologies for collaboration. The course was itself delivered virtually through web workshops, online learning, peer interaction and coaching at a distance. The programme involved 14 hours of commitment over 6 weeks.


RESULTS

The programme has delivered what Amec Foster Wheeler needed in helping staff to manage difference. One participant said: “I found it eye-opening in relation to how people of different cultures communicate and expect to be communicated to.”


WHAT ELSE?

We have now expanded the programme for a variety of clients, recognizing that it is particularly relevant to the needs of matrix organisations where individuals need to win support and drive progress without traditional line management authority.