Get Ready for Russia
Before heading to the world’s ninth-biggest economy, be sure to understand its business culture.
By Vitaly Glotov, PMP
ask what is wrong, because this can be considered
rude in Russia. Still, the team may quickly spread
the word that something is amiss, a phenomenon
called “the sarafan radio.” So try to control your
emotions to prevent rumors from starting.
3. Knowledge is power. One of the highest forms
of acknowledgement in Russia is the sharing of
information, knowledge or contacts. As performance awards, project managers share knowledge
with individual team members. Unlike in many
countries, sharing information with only certain
team members is unlikely to frustrate others.
4. Get involved. Habitually, Russian managers
love the project team and concern themselves
deeply with it, including with members’ personal
In an increasingly global environment, project managers are being sent around the world to work on projects more often. But foreign customs and languages can easily lead newcomers astray. For project
practitioners heading to Russia, here are eight tips
for navigating the country’s business culture:
1. Recruit translators. If there isn’t time to learn
Russian, find good translators. Ideally, fill this
role with more than one project team member—
multiple translators on call means less chance of
working without support in the face of a looming
deadline. If you decide to rely on your own knowledge of Russian, make sure your proficiency level
is adequate. It’s a difficult language.
2. Control your emotions. Even if you seem upset
by something, your team members are unlikely to
Getting It Done PROJECT MANAGEMENT IN ACTION
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