The impact of cross-cultural factors on heavy engineering projects: case Kenya and UK

Managing in today’s environment provides many challenges and project teams are frequently confronted with situations which challenge the traditional ways projects have been managed. Project success is dependent upon the effective management of people and at the heart of this process is client leadership. Terms such as responsive project manager, issue resolution and value criteria are increasing in popularity, however, dealing with the mutual inconsistency these three terms provides a challenge to most of today’s multinational construction organizations. In spite of recent extensive research, there has been little consideration given to how to classify success factors that influence cross-cultural project team performance. The reported research employed both in-depth interviews and postal questionnaires methodologies to capture the relevant experiences of senior managers in Kenya and the UK. The results were grouped under three major headings: (i) monitoring project team performance; (ii) achieving team goals; and (iii) maintaining team affiliations. The project leaders agreed that successful cross-cultural project team performance can be achieved by creating an effective integrated cross-cultural construction team. The findings accentuates a need for future research into project success factors to investigate the experiences of virtual project leaders and the difficulties faced in realizing effective project team performance.