Smartcuts for Working With Offshore Teams (India)


I just started a new Technical COO role with a tech start-up, and we have a fabulous offshore team. I noticed that when I was making requests or giving an explanation our offshore delivery manager was often shaking his head which to me as an American feels like "no"/dissent, but he would always verbally affirm agreement. I did a little research and found that a "wobble," is more like "okay" to the team. So cool to learn! And, it made me wonder what else I don't know...

I am curious about what other cultural insights or smartcuts others might have to share that will help me to be the best possible partner to this team? This is a tremendously capable and talented team and I really don't want my ignorance to impede their success. All insights are welcome!

Hi @melgordon I would also encourage them to ask questions and let them know that no question is a dumb question, as Indians tend to shy away from asking. I own a software development company based out of India. Would be happy to jump on a call to answer any questions you may have. I can be reached [email protected]CheersChitra
I've worked with offshore teams numerous times and am happy to jump on a call, etc. Can send me a DM here or via A few things, when working with teams in India, you need to provide really clear, detailed instructions. I found when I wasn't explicit in my instructions, things came back the same way I sent them or weren't implemented correctly. I believe someone else mentioned it below but you definitely have to ask if they have any questions and/or hold meetings to walk through and confirm their understanding so that way you are all on the same page and this gives them an opportunity to ask clarifying questions as you will see by going over it what's not clear and what is. Another thing is I found that I need to tell them to go home or stop working because they just continue to work well past when they should and/or their managers expect them to keep working. I've had instances when I've had to actually stop responding. at a certain point in the day. Those are some tips. I hope they are helpful.