How to create Global Project Management Culture?

Culture is a shared system of beliefs or values. People may identify with multiple different aspects of culture. For example; ethnic, national, organizational, technological, generational… Project Managers in the Asia Pacific region operate in a diverse environment. Projects in this region frequently have; Japanese, Chinese, Indian, Indonesian, Malaysian….. According to the PMBoK “Most Organizations have developed unique cultures”.

Do you remember, the Culture of Greed? This culture was epitomized by Bear Sterns, Lehman Brothers and other investment banks as valuing money over any other metric. Today, there is a technological culture that can transcend national borders. For example; social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google +. Children growing up today anywhere in the world are using the same devices, downloading the same apps, and hanging out and watching the same YouTube videos. People are sharing the same values. The lessons we can see is that Culture is Dynamic. Culture is dynamic and is always changing. The problem is culture and conflict. @Ajamal 2008 “Culture may be a significant factor in project failure and culture is not widely reported in project management literature.” How can we create Global Project Culture? The answer is by cultivating conditions for “emergence.”


Global Multi-Cultural Projects are more complex. This is real complexity caused by many unknown variables: Culture, Communication Methods, Language, Clear Vision, dis-location form multiple time zones… this is the opposite of  people that can pivot easily and adjust their project when they work in small teams that are co-located. Global Project Managers may smile when they hear antidotal methods of how to be agile. Simply communicating across time and space causes ambiguity and delay. Ambiguity causes confusion, re-work, more delays and mis-trust. While there are no silver bullets that will solve all of our problems, our dream solution is to have people who are separated by time and place to act based on knowledge. How do we do that? Global Project manager have to learn how to improve their performance of soft skill, multi-cultural stakeholder management. My Key Point is we have to Create  “Global Project Management Culture” for People to Flourish.