Team working, as understood in the Anglo-Saxon world is alien to the Indian approach to business.
A team expects to be given exact and complete instructions by the team-leader or boss and then to follow those instructions exactly. Team members would not be expected to query the instructions passed down to them and would expect to follow them even when it became apparent that things were going wrong.
Therefore, the team leader takes complete responsibility for the success or failure of a project and needs to be constantly on top of progress and looking out for problems. If anything goes awry, the team leader is expected to sort it out personally. Once again, micro-management is the key.
Indian team-members love to get positive feedback on work done (especially if that feedback is cc’d to the boss) but find negative feedback very difficult to handle. Negative feedback can be seen as detrimental to future promotion prospects and the western concept of welcoming mistakes as a positive learning experience is a non-Indian reaction.
At the extreme, over-use of negative feedback can increase attrition rates within off-shore centres (attrition rates which are already usually very high.)
This country-specific business culture profile was written by Keith Warburton who is the founder of the cultural awareness training consultancy Global Business Culture.
Global Business culture is a leading training provider in the fields of cross-cultural communication and global virtual team working. We provide training to global corporations in live classroom-based formats, through webinars and also through our cultural awareness digital learning hub, Global Business Compass.
This World Business Culture profile is designed as an introduction to business culture in India only and a more detailed understanding needs a more in-depth exploration which we can provide through our training and consultancy services.
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