Global Software Teams Problems Global software teams are risky management propositions ? Cross-cultural differences Geographical dispersion (Burden of distance) Loss of communication richness Coordination breakdown Loss of “teamness” Time zone Global Software Teams Problems Probability of communication at least once a week Dispersion 30 20 10 10 25 50 100 Separation distance (in meters) Global Software Teams Problems Dispersion It is easier to manage groups in one location than dispersed. Shorter project timeliness result from shorter communications lines and the ability to give feedback quickly Co-location team usually increases trust and reduces miscommunication Co-located teams demands less management support Physical barriers reduce the amount of communications Global Software Teams Problems Dispersion Centralization of IS development Control – Increase ability to monitor and control the development process to ensure adherence to standard Less duplication of effort and wasted effort – When resources are centralized, all the specialists are easily maintained. There is no need for one specialist in each location Better ability to maintain a corporate culture Global Software Teams Problems Dispersion Disadvantages of co-location on the other hand Informal oral communication may promote sloppiness in documentation and procedure. Co-location leads to inbreeding, groupthink, and other group pathologies, whereas decentralization forester independent thinking and initiative Local responsiveness to local customer? Innovation of smaller, more independent groups Global Software Teams Problems Coordination Breakdown Coordination: is the act of integrating each task and organizational unit so that it contributes to the overall objective Control: is the process of adhering to goals or policies or standards As the interdependency between teams increases, the need for coordination increases Global Software Teams Problems Coordination costs increases as interdependency increases Resources A A A B B B Pooled Coordination: teams share their resources, such as office space or computer networks. Sequential Coordination: the output of one team is used as an input by another. Reciprocal Coordination: teams pass their work back and forth as they add value to it, as in “ follow-the-sun” Global Software Teams Problems The loss of “communication richness” Any task requiring intensive cooperation requires more communication – the richer the better GST always wants a richer medium A GST manager must regularly convey the team vision to all participating groups and cultures, in a way that will be understood. Less rich medium are sometimes very good to express emotions you probably will not like to show in a group. Writing skills and vocal skill are not same in many cultures. Global Software Teams Problems Loss of “Teamness” Types of teams Multi-functional Self-empowered Self-managed High-performing Specialized Temporary Teams in the Workplace Teams in the Workplace Monitoring the Environment Updating Employees and Other Managers about Team Activities Leading, Motivating, and Coaching Team Members Planning and Making Decisions Allocating Resources Resolving Problems Monitoring Quality and Performance Teams in the Workplace Groupware To increase communication and improve decision making process. Electronic Mail and Messaging Group Calendaring and Scheduling Electronic Meeting Systems Desktop Video and Real-time Data Conferencing Global Software Teams Problems Loss of “Teamness” Diversity’s drawback Homogeneous vs. heterogeneous Loss of cohesion Successful teams are cohesive Cohesive leads to enhanced motivation, increased morale, greater productivity, harder work, etc. The team members help each other, complement each other, know each other strength and weakness. Cohesion is more difficult for cross-cultural teams Mistrust due to excessive stereotyping Lowered interpersonal attractiveness Languages problems etc. Global Software Teams Problems Loss of “teamness” Building trust takes time Distance is an impediment to building relationships of trust. - trust is the peculiar belief predicted not on evidence but on lack of contrary evidence (Gambetta) Disperse teams meet infrequently and they communicate primarily asynchronously The classic stage model of team psychological development maturity by Tuckman (1965) Forming Storming Conflicts break out over roles, objectives, and task allocations. Different leaders, official or otherwise, are pursuing different goals. Norming The team gets together and gets to know each other. It clarifies roles, figures out the tasks and the objectives. The team begins to form norms, roles, and protocols for working together. Some team cohesion may begin. Performing The team begins to perform well, working toward a common goal. Conflicts are handled constructively. Global Software Teams Problems Loss of “teamness” Team size gets out of hand Global teams in multiple sites are generally larger per task than co-located teams. The fewer the team members, the fewer communication links needed, and the less the coordination needed.