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  • Do you need to identify and accelerate the development of your current and future global leaders?
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  • Would your business be more successful if individuals, teams and divisions of your organization could work more effectively with colleagues from other cultures?
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  • Would your global organization benefit from a proactive approach to change management and transformation?
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  • Does your organization need to adapt or develop strategies to better motivate, engage and retain valuable global talent?
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ITAP International specializes in global, cross-border consulting. We focus on helping individuals, teams and organizations work across internal and national borders, achieving success through people. We are experts working in multiple countries with extensive line and staff experience in multiple sectors. Our work is based on the best research and the best global practices. Our services focus on:

  1. Talent retention and development
  2. Effectiveness of the senior team and mission critical global teams
  3. Global workforce development
  4. Transformation and change

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ITAP is a licensee of the Hofstede CWQ™

The Hofstede Culture in the Workplace Questionnaire™ (Hofstede CWQ) is based on the seminal cultural research of Dr. Geert Hofstede. ITAP licenses the Hofstede CWQ from ODE Consulting® Pte. Ltd. The Hofstede CWQ is the only instrument endorsed by Dr. Hofstede. ODE Consulting's licensed CW Partners and Global Resource Team members have worldwide exclusive rights to its use and are approved to represent Dr. Hofstede's research. According to Dr. Hofstede, "This [approval] is due to their professionalism and deep understanding of my work.”

Culture, what Dr. Hofstede refers to as "software of the mind/mental programming," is a critical variable that guides peoples' actions and reactions. Understanding one's own culture and the impact of culture on the actions of others is essential for effective global business interactions. The Hofstede Culture in the Workplace Questionnaire™ provides respondents with insights about themselves and a better understanding of how their cultural preferences, as well as the cultural preferences of others, impact working relationships.

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 Would your business be more successful if individuals, teams and divisions of your organization could work more effectively with colleagues from other cultures?

 Do you need to identify and accelerate the development of your current and future global leaders?

 Does your organization need to adapt or develop strategies to better motivate, engage and retain valuable global talent?

 Would your global organization benefit from a proactive approach to change management and transformation? 

ITAP International understands the impact that national culture differences have on business interactions and how these might become issues with organizations.  Our clients contact us because they need to:

  • Reduce rework that is due to mis-communication and mis-interpretation of behavioral drivers to improve performance on mission critical teams
  • Conduct research on the impact that cultural differences have on topics such as attitudes towards safety and risk, reward and recognition approaches, medical devices help desk virtual support, and the cultural barriers to effective global mergers
  • Identify and develop global talent, who will succeed and stay as well as global talent already within their organization

ITAP engages as partners in actions that enhance your ability to work towards and achieve the organizational mission. ITAP helps build knowledge, capability and effectiveness through:

  1. Assessment and adaptation of cultural localization to assure sound leadership, management and/or operations throughout an organization
  2. Enhancement of coordination across functions, divisions, countries or other borders
  3. Identification, selection, development and retention of leaders and critical talent, and assuring they are ready for succession.
  4. Development of teams/team leaders and individual contributors
  5. Fostering effective communications

Often one of a company's most expensive assets is its human capital, the human resources of the organization. The management of your human resources focuses on:

  • Recruitment and selection of employees who can succeed at their jobs and who will stay with your organization, and
  • Making sure that employees' abilities are optimally nurtured and developed so that the company can receive an optimal return on the investment made in these employees.
Recruitment and Selection

This is particularly difficult in a global organization where one of your biggest challenges will be finding, retaining and developing a superior global workforce. ITAP knows how to identify the "success factors" of a position…which is a key to identification of superior candidates. Successful companies know what the jobs entail and seek to hire those candidates who can be more successful/effective with the lowest amount of support. Well written job descriptions or learning maps that clearly delineate needed capabilities make for effective selection and hiring. Understanding cultural differences in the recruitment process, the selection of candidates and what motivates employees in various cultures is crucial to the success of global organizations.

Targeted Interview Techniques

In addition, ITAP can support your selection process using and teaching you to use Behavior Event Interviewing (BRI) or Targeted Interview (TI) techniques. While not difficult to learn, they are far more effective at identifying exactly what capabilities particular candidates could bring to your organization. This is particularly important when recruiting and selecting across cultures.

Assimilating New Employees

In this competitive environment for attracting global talent, companies need to pay particular attention to the perception of the company/brand on the part of candidates and new hires. A well thought out and extensive assimilation process often makes new employees more likely to stay. This process should start before the offer is made, and many companies have assimilation plans for at least the initial six months on the job. This is especially important in group and relationship cultures as it helps the new employees feel welcomed into the group and gives them time and structure to establish relationships that will be important to the employee as well as anchor their loyalty to the company. ITAP can support your development of an effective onboarding or assimilation process.

Developing Your Employees - Global Workforce Development

Helping your employees recognize that they work in a multi-cultural environment or a global environment is an official reminder that there is an expectation that they will attend to cultural differences. ITAP's extensive experience in workforce development can focus on this need. General awareness programs are a good start. In addition, ITAP can provide specific programs targeted to functional needs (global marketing, or global e-learning development), and/or on culture-specific needs, such as Understanding Your Chinese Employees or Presenting to Japanese Audiences.

Localizing Your Employee Handbook and Job Descriptions

The meaning of job titles and job responsibilities vary across cultures. ITAP can help you localize these - make them appropriate for various geographies in which these positions are located. ITAP has depth and breadth of experience in developing global employees.

Performance Management

In many cultures there is a preference for well documented performance systems. Communicating exactly what is expected and defining the levels of behaviors and assessing employees all against the same criteria feels more fair to many employees. Performance systems that depend on manager discretion can be viewed as "favoritism" and "unfair."

Global Leadership Selection and Retention

If you know what behaviors differentiate the successful employees,  recruiting (external) and selecting (internal) against these behaviors reduces the need for development (as you hire those who already have the needed skills) and benefits employees by recognizing those who already have the skills necessary to succeed.

The global leadership behaviors required for success include:

  • The flexibility to work and manage across cultures
  • The ability to be the voice of the local culture to home office while being the voice of home office to the local employees
  • Understanding of and ability to adapt to cultural differences as they impact business practices

If you want your global leaders to succeed and stay, ITAP can help you:

  • Define the behaviors associated with the actual success factors in YOUR company
  • Identify internal and external candidates who already have those success factors
  • Provide accurate, reliable and detailed selection/recruitment data
  • Provide detailed developmental reports
Global Succession Management and Development

Companies demand talent development / succession management to retain top talent and stay competitive. Linking both to a leadership competency model leverages investments, communicates expectations, and rewards (and retains) deserving talent. ITAP helps clients:

  • Define Leadership and Management competencies
  • Develop Succession processes
  • Assess talent for example using Talent Potential Analysis and/or 360˚ assessments
  • Identify areas for individual development
Strategic HR

Unless your HR professionals have a thorough knowledge of global business, what it takes to establish companies in new geographies and the needs of the local workers in country, you need the help that ITAP can give. We can be your local arm by temporarily outsourcing your start-up HR in new geographies.

Since a company's strategy will impact its employees, you need HR support that understands the global landscape, everything from the recruitment and hiring techniques used in other countries, to the establishment of contracts, and compensation and benefits packages. ITAP's strategic partners can support global companies in 200 countries around the world.

Globalizing the HR Function: HR Staff Development

As companies globalize, their HR departments need to understand the challenges of working in and serving a global organization. ITAP can provide:

  • Consulting behind the scenes for HR professionals to support them as they serve the needs of their global organizations
  • Web content HR professionals can use to sell to, train or explain about and be a better global business partner
  • Certification for HR professionals in the administration and use of ITAP tools and services
  • Act as temporary staff to supplement the capabilities of the existing professionals.
Change Management

The development of your organization and, particularly, how you manage change impacts the success of your business. Managing change and growth across cultures and geographies requires specific knowledge of the impact of change and growth needs in particular cultures.

ITAP understands the cultural nuances of change in many cultures and can support your organization in collecting and analyzing data on work culture and employee climate surveys to assure responses are culturally appropriate. Our understanding of cross-border change initiatives can greatly reduce the usual issues created by change initiatives and address culturally specific issues.

Companies that institute either small- or large-scale change need to attend to the needs of the employees before, during and after this process. ITAP can support the Change process throughout its life cycle. We can:

  • Facilitate the charter of change implementation teams
  • Provide consulting on employee communications
  • Design and deliver cross-cultural training for multi-cultural or virtual implementation teams
  • Provide change team leader support and data/information from assessment results
  • Provide the organization with data on the impact of the change.
Action Learning

Imagine selecting "talent to watch" and assigning them an as yet unsolved business problem. Give them some parameters about expected outcomes, timeframes, and how to collect information - and watch them learn. One learning coach and monthly measuring their learnings (using the Action Learning Team Process Questionnaire™) insures they:

  • Learn about cross-functional issues
  • Meet people from all over the company
  • Get into the day to day issues these people face.

Well defined action learning projects can resolve seemingly insurmountable business issues, develop and challenge talent, and cost nowhere near what a month at business school would cost.

Cross-Cultural Coaching for Executives and Team Leaders

ITAP provides individualized, custom or one-on-one support to enable executives and virtual team leaders to be more effective in global organizations / with global teams.

We offer a goal-oriented, personally-tailored, confidential learning alliance between a professional coach and the executive. Coaching:

  • Gives the executive the opportunity to share personal concerns
  • Helps the executive gain perspectives from a coach who is outside the organizational politics
  • Requires a collaborative relationship between the executive and the coach.

NOTE: The organization and the individual must be committed to coaching for it to be successful.

One-on-one, confidential coaching:

  • Provides a supportive relationship
  • Offers confidential advice
  • Focuses on the specific developmental objectives of the executive
  • Enables the executive to define strategic initiatives or key priorities
  • Facilitates analysis of the impact of multiple options
  • Assists the executive in creating an action plan, including planned steps, their possible impact, and contingency planning
  • Helps examine obstacles and barriers to achieving goals
Coaching's Five Stages

1. Develop a contract between the executive and the coach

2. Assessment and Analysis

  • Collecting, validating and analyzing information
    • Assessment/data collection and analysis
    • Administer questionnaire or conduct customized interviews to gather confidential and specific information on how the client is perceived
  • Identifying the issues to be addressed/outcomes desired
  • Defining timeframes for coaching, length of service
  • Outlining approaches for sessions (Length, frequency, content framework)

3. Coaching sessions

  • Sharing perspectives
  • Analysis
  • Review of actions taken and their outcomes

4. Updates for sponsor

5. Making development recommendations


Required pre-work assessment - Hofstede Culture in the Workplace Questionnaire™

A 60-minute introductory session

  • Review of results of the assessment
  • Establishment of objectives for the coach and the executive
  • Definition of timelines (how long each session will last and what milestones/outcomes are the targets)
  • Summary of these agreements / charter draft by the coach, approved by the executive

Data collection using questionnaires or structured interviews

Two to Four sessions per month, of one and a half to two hours; if possible, at least half should be in person

  • Focus on executive responsibilities and how to effectively apply them
  • Review issues since last session
  • Review outcomes of actions planned in the previous session
  • Review the lessons learned or observations to support these lessons since the previous session
  • Preparation for upcoming challenges
  • New approaches and their potential impact (organizationally, senior staff, employees)
  • Contingency planning (what if the new approaches do not work)
  • Impact of executive behavior and decisions on immediate staff and their subordinates

Ongoing telephonic/email coaching (telephone or email when you need a question answered) billed at normal rates.



Developing competency and leadership models that are effective internationally: ITAP's special focus on "Cross Cultural Competency" and the concept of "Behavioral Diversity"

Defined as "the personal capabilities, underlying characteristics and behaviors that drive superior performance at work across national boundaries" - there is no doubt that for today's global organization, "cross-cultural competence" is critical. It is a simple and obvious truth that success in cross-cultural roles requires cross-cultural competency. International roles are complex, challenging and demand a wider range of capabilities than domestic roles. Most critically, they demand flexibility in the means by which objectives are achieved - even if those objectives may be "universal."

Yet most organizations design and implement - even impose - leadership models and employee expectations that are in effect mono-cultural in content, so that "diversity" is by default limited to those who at least behave like the organization's home culture.- But what is "best practice" in one culture might be wholly ineffective (or even offensive) in another. There is no universal "global approach" that can be defined by the same behaviors that works for every culture. While the competency may be global - such as Leadership - the behavioral expectations will differ from culture to culture if that Leader is to be effective in delivering what the organization needs internationally.

This illustrates what we mean by "Behavioral Diversity" - enabling an organization to recognize the value and validity of a range of behavioral alternatives that will produce what the organization needs - but not always in just the way practices are applied at head-office.

ITAP offers a thorough and effective methodology for:

  • Auditing and assessing existing leadership models against the organization's international needs
  • Creating internationally viable and inclusive leadership models
  • Enabling an organization to focus on maximizing output, rather than limiting output to those who 'behave like us.'

Geert Hofstede refers to culture as "software of the mind." Values, assumptions and beliefs taught as we grow up, become embedded in the way we think about things and they shape our behavior. Research has shown cultural groups generally share values. Because of differences between cultures, cultural values, assumptions and beliefs can produce widely different behaviors and perspectives. In short, people do not always behave the same way you do and to expect them to, especially when working across cultures, is a mistake that costs businesses millions (for example rework) and unnecessary expense to correct.

Cross-Cultural Understanding - What Do You Need?

Various work situations require different levels of cultural understanding. ITAP provides learning at the following levels.

Level I Programs - Usually relatively short in length. Often contain more breadth rather than depth of content.

These programs offer the "Do's and Don'ts" of international business, often mixing information about etiquette with advice on what types of business gifts to give and how to best form business relationships in other countries.

They also may provide specific information about travel, banking, embassies, etc. These programs are most useful for employees with little or no international business experience.


  • First or second time business travelers (who might typically spend from a few days up to 3 weeks in international travel per trip)
  • Executives or employees on short term assignments (up to 6 months) making their first trip to the new location (examples might include mission critical or international SWAT teams)
  • Executives newly responsible for departments or functions that typically attract multicultural employees (examples might be IT or statistics departments)
  • Recently promoted executives whose new responsibilities for the first time include international or global responsibilities
  • Managers and employees working for the first time in global or multi-cultural organizations

Level II Programs - Usually more in-depth, might have several phases and be longer in duration; often these programs are embedded in an initiative rather than stand-alone programs.

Level II programs provide analytic tools to help participants understand the relationship between culture and business. The tools and approaches provide models of cultures based on research in the field of comparative sociology or anthropology.

Participants learn to understand social and business transactions by applying the results these analytic tools, and are often tested through the use of critical incidents or case studies. At the end of these programs, participants are able to analyze general culture-based business transactions to determine how, in a specific culture, the business transaction might be different from the transaction in their own cultures.


  • Executives embarking on a global strategy, expanding into new global markets, marketing to specific cultural target markets (for example a new, multicultural marketing initiative)
  • Recently promoted executives now with international or global responsibilities
  • Business travelers (who typically spend 3 or more weeks in international travel per trip)
  • Executives or employees on short- to medium-term assignments (up to 1 year)
  • Managers and employees who work in global companies or in companies with a multicultural workforce

Level III - Consulting

At this level, specific information (typical of Level I) and analytic tools (provided in Level II) are brought to bear on:

  1. Specific business problems or opportunities (such as sales or marketing, call centers, mergers or acquisitions) within the area of these employees' professional scope
  2. Relocation assistance for employees and their families
  3. In-country business support for the relocated executive working across cultures
  4. Decision-making at executive organizational levels (e.g., where to locate a new plant in a region)

At the end of these sessions, participants are able to apply the analytic tools and specific country, regional, and culture-based information to business problems in their areas of expertise.


  • Anyone working in business functions whose responsibilities include interacting with people from various cultures as a normal course of business. (Examples might include: presenting to other cultures, negotiations, call center agents serving a multicultural customer, merger/acquisition integration, sales, managing people from various cultures, global marketing, etc.)
  • HR/OD professionals working in a global company; designing HR/OD practices and programs for application across cultures or globally
  • Internal consultants (such as the audit function) working in a global company
  • Relocating employees and their families
  • Managers and leaders responsible for departments or functions that typically attract multicultural employees
  • Virtual or remote managers, employees or teams
  • Employees who interact with vendors, executives or employees from other countries
  • Anyone who interfaces in any way with a wide variety of cultures

Cross-Cultural Effectiveness - How Does It Happen?

According to Fons Trompenaars, to be effective when working across cultures one needs to recognize that there are cultural differences, respect these differences and find ways to reconcile them in the work you do together.

Recognize: Results from the Culture in the Workplace Questionnaire™ help introduce foundational cultural differences, while indicating the preferences of the respondent along six continuums of cultural dimensions. These cultural dimensions indicate cultural differences that are deeply embedded (software of the mind).

Respect: Respecting differences in deeply held beliefs and values is the first step towards finding ways to reconcile different approaches to achieve required business outcomes.

Reconcile: Rarely is there only one way to achieve a desired outcome. When working across cultures, those who are more likely to be successful working, managing or leading across cultures will be those who understand how to apply a wide variety of approaches, based on the cultural preferences of others or what is appropriate in multi-cultural settings.

ITAP Global Resource Team Offices

Seoul, South KoreaSingapore / China / PhilippinesMunich, GermanyPrinceton, New Jersey, USA


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ITAP Asia Pacific

OD Corea / ITAP Asia Pacific
Seoul, South Korea

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ITAP Singapore / ITAP China / ITAP Philippines

ODE Consulting /

ODE Consulting (China) Co., Ltd. / 
Shanghai, China

CMC Business Solutions / 
Manila, Philippines

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ITAP Europe

TWIST Consulting / ITAP Europe
Munich, Germany

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ITAP Americas
Princeton, NJ, USA

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