How International Team Cultures Foster an Organic Growth Mindset

The first half of 2022 has once again proven that uncertainty remains for global organizations. As we continue to witness a volatile, dynamic, and ever-changing world, we are faced with new levels of ambiguity and challenges for society and businesses. At the center of this is the value of human capital. The nature of work, what is done, how it is done, by whom, what and where, carry huge implications for talent acquisition and growth.

As organizations look to transform and respond to so many complex uncertainties, equipping businesses for future disruption to ensure competitive advantage is more important than ever.

One strategy that can help businesses stay agile is implementing a future fit hiring strategy whereby the competency of the future is not only qualified skills, but also the employee mindset. The term “growth mindset” is a great description of this. Coined by Stanford professor Carol Dweck, “growth mindset” is used to describe an individual and/or employee who continues to learn and grow, believes nothing is set in stone and is constantly evolving.

In this continued search for talent, there is a common misconception that finding this evolving employee is a new challenge and that this mindset is somewhat novel. However, when you look at the precedent set by international teams - who have been navigating impact via remote connections far before the onset of the pandemic - there is a demonstrated preexisting culture of resilience and innate growth mindset.

For multinational teams based away from corporate HQ, this means a willingness and motivation to think global, embrace transformation and continually demonstrate strategic value. Arguably the quick recovery of foreign direct investment to many high knowledge economies over the course of 2021 onwards is testament to this. Long before the pandemic tested workflows in new ways, these countries were reliable sources of human capital that is diverse, intrinsically motivated and believe in transformation.

A growth mindset allows individuals to see the potential in all people. It removes binary assumptions about people who are talented or people who are not. At its core, it is an appreciation of diversity.

International teams are naturally diverse. Take U.S. headquartered technology companies with large subsidiaries in European countries like Ireland as an example. These companies are looking for a staff base that is multifaceted, multilingual and understands commercial nuance for specific geographies. These teams are made up of a large mix of Irish, European, and global nationalities who are relocating abroad in search of adventure and new opportunities and are ready to adapt to different cultural contexts. Their different backgrounds and perspectives, which lend themselves to creativity and innovation, are what makes these teams successful.

The product of a diverse and multinational team structure is a keen sense of situational awareness. This creates employees who are intrinsically connected to environmental challenges and opportunities. This is a core value add for many international subsidiaries and is demonstrated in several ways. From having the awareness of territory nuances and anticipating risk to creating business solutions based on an innate understanding of the market, these teams can effectively utilize their resources in ways that guide and drive growth opportunities.

For high knowledge economies, the investment trajectory is often one whereby multinationals invest in a location for a specific business need and realize broader value thereby continuing to grow and scale new functions. At the core of this is the willingness of employees to embrace transformation and create teams and leaders who offer a growth mindset. This ethos turns disruption into an opportunity to drive transformative change in outdated products, processes, and people. 

As organizations look to embrace a new norm where change is ever present, the psyche of employees is fundamental to organization and business growth. International teams provide an organic culture whereby competency and mindset have equal value. For these groups continually looking to scale, transform and add value, a growth mindset is at the core of their formula for success.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Gemma Allen

Gemma Allen is the vice president of B2C technology at IDA Ireland, the agency responsible for the attraction and retention of inward foreign direct investment into Ireland. In her current role with IDA Ireland, she is responsible for building relations with business leaders, political stakeholders and key industry players furthering foreign direct investment into Ireland. Allen is based in New York City and has over 15 years’ experience working with the world’s largest technology companies in the U.S. and Europe.

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