Engineering practice across cultures is more or less standardised but I’ve observed that product management practice- the expectations and methods, vary between geographies. One of the major factors that influence our work is the predominant cultural fabric of the team. The way we do meetings in Germany are different to how it was done in India. When I freelanced for a company from Silicon Valley, it was quite different in another dimension. When I get into a debate with a German colleague, their criticism of my idea is not a criticism of my competency but a practice of sachlichkeit. An American colleague of mine had a hard time coping with direct, honest feedback from a Dutch colleague. As an Indian, I have rarely said No to more work from my boss but it’s common practice in teams in Europe. The way you’ negotiate your salary when interviewing for a German firm is different to how you’d do so for an Indian, French or American company. These nuances – I have learnt by making mistakes, observing, reading and lots of interactions with locals. I’d like to share some of these nuances that could help a Product Manager work better with his multi-national/multi-cultural team. It’d also help Product leaders who are looking at international talent for their team evaluate the candidates better in interviews.
- I’d like to share some nuances that could help a Product Manager work better with different members of his multi-national/multi-cultural team.
- It’d help Product leaders who are looking at recruiting international talent, to evaluate the applicants better during interviews by understanding the cultural background.
- It’d help PMs in new organizations quickly adapt to a new cultural dynamic.