Our first international collaboration with the students from Georgia was a Zoom Meeting. We watched several videos to learn about how personas can be used in a Design Thinking process and why they are so helpful.
Afterwards, everyone of us prepared his or her own Persona with a template that was handed to us. We had to identify our personal career pressures, current or past job satisfaction, values and our own persona with drivers, motivations & values. With our prepared personas we got into the three groups our supervisors divided us into. Two groups of eight and one group of nine international students. Before the meetings, we all got into contact with our group members and created WhatsApp Group chats so that communication was quicker and easier. Something interesting we noticed here was, that many of the US students downloaded WhatsApp just for communicating with us. While it is rather unusual not to use WhatApp in Germany, it is rather unusual to use WhatApp in the US.
After all groups found a suiting time frame (in the mornings for the US students, in the afternoon for the German students), we got together for the first time. In the meeting we each presented our created persona to our group. We held the meetings via Zoom as it offers the necessary features like recording, Screen sharing and of course the videos to be able to see everybody, which gave the online a personal touch.
The persona meeting was a very nice start to our international collaboration. We got to know each other very quickly and on a different level than you do in a usual virtual meeting. It was interesting to see how different people perceive their career expectations, what drives them in their life, and what they care about most.