After the borders that closed at the pandemic’s onset started reopening, we were just beginning to feel free to move about again. Yet with aggressive new variants and populations that lack (or refuse) available vaccines, international travel is once more in doubt. Although we aren’t back to full-on sheltering in place, the state of travel is still unquestionably questionable.

Global companies find themselves somewhere on the spectrum between “as usual” and “unusual” or “in situ” and “ex situ.” Travel is being impacted by vaccine and testing protocols, fluctuating airline operations, supply chain disruptions, and border closures. However, like the show, business must go on even in uncertain times.

Companies need to remain flexible enough to adapt to ever-changing conditions in real time or risk failure. The good news? There are ways to overcome the challenges and keep doing business overseas even when travel remains dicey.

Communication is job one

Good communication is critical to the success of any company under the best of circumstances. Challenged by distance, time zones, and language barriers, though, “good” can be a difficult standard to attain. For certain, it will require a solid strategy and concerted effort.

Developing remote team communication guidelines will facilitate interaction between teams and managers who can’t be in the same room. The guidelines should encourage high-quality communication, not just more of it. Communicating randomly and too frequently will hamper productivity at the level where you need it most.

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