The training was an excellent experience. This opportunity allowed us to look at ourselves and reflect on what we are doing right and what we should change.Toni Celeste, Manager, Sales Operations, Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories, Inc.
With constant and growing interaction between Dr. Reddy’s Indian headquarters and its important US operation Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories, Inc. (USA), the organisation’s HR team identified the need to support its Indian expatriate population and develop US-Indian team collaboration.
Two key training and support initiatives were identified as part of this needs assessments. Firstly, the need to provide targeted intercultural training for employees on assignment from the parent company in India to ensure a smooth transition to living and working in the USA. With many Indian expatriates assuming senior managerial roles in the USA, it was important for Indian expatriates to understand how to engage with local US teams and demonstrate strong leadership from the outset.
Secondly, a personalised intercultural programme was also required for US staff working with Hyderabad and/or Indian expatriates in the USA. The objective of which was to help them to develop strategies and techniques to collaborate more effectively with their Indian colleagues.
Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories
Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Limited is an integrated global pharmaceutical company committed to providing affordable and innovative medicines for healthier lives. Headquartered in Hyderabad, India, Dr. Reddy’s comprises over 16,500 staff across 25 international sites including India, USA, Mexico, UK and the Netherlands.
Employing over 23 different nationalities, Dr. Reddy’s recognises that successful international working and cross-cultural team collaboration require its workforce to develop global competence skills to be able to communicate effectively. The organisation is committed to creating a work environment that encourages diverse perspectives and upholds the dignity of work and of individuals.
The core objectives of the training initiative were to:
Communicaid worked closely with the HR team to understand Dr. Reddy’s organisational culture and structure as well as the cultural challenges facing local and Indian employees working across US sites.
We designed an integrated three-part programme that allowed employees the space in mono-cultural groups to reflect on their own and the other culture, to benchmark existing knowledge and assumptions and to discuss any intercultural challenges and potential solutions. These country-focused sessions were followed by the opportunity for employees to come together with their colleagues from the other culture to share experiences and expectations and to work together to agree a common set of communication methods.
It was essential that these training programmes were engaging and fun and could be adapted to meet the requirements of all levels of employees, from production workers to senior managers. Training was highly interactive focusing on discussion, relevant case studies and role plays.
To increase interest in both cultures, we also included an authentic lunch as part of the country focused programmes where delegates were encouraged to sample typical food from the other culture and learn more about social etiquette.
Communicaid designed the following two stage training solution for Dr. Reddy’s employees.
This one day Working Successfully in the USA training programme provides delegates with the necessary awareness, knowledge and skills to adapt quickly and smoothly to living and working in the US.
This one day Working Successfully with Indian Colleagues programme develops delegates’understanding of Indian business and social culture and how it impacts on working practices and communication styles.
This one day workshop brings delegates from both nationalities together and encourages them to share their experiences, assumptions and expectations of each other. The key focus is on higher level business practices and skills development such as cross-cultural management and negotiation.
In addition to these group training programmes, Communicaid also provides one-to-one coaching to senior managers responsible for multicultural teams or HR professionals supporting Indian expatriates.
Communicaid has been working with Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, Inc. since 2009 to develop the international competence of its workforce across multiple sites in the USA.
To-date, hundreds of employees have benefited from learning more about the role culture plays in effective international relationships.After attending these training programmes, delegates now demonstrate a greater understanding of their
international colleagues’ attitudes and expectations in the workplace coupled with practical strategies to work more successfully together. Training has also helped to foster more positive relationships across cultures and improve the effectiveness of cross-cultural teams.
“The training was an excellent experience. This opportunity allowed us to look at ourselves and reflect on what we are doing right and what we should change.” Toni Celeste, Manager, Sales Operations, Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories, Inc.