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Intercultural Business Communication
Students: Neiconi Magdalena Adelina Pop Paula Ioana Popa Emilia Camelia An II, seria 10, grupa 3
people often do not have this opportunity. These theories help to iron out possible ripples of misunderstanding by giving a basic guideline on how to address situations. the favor is returned. The basic skills of intercultural communication are fundamentally general communication skills that can be used universally by all cultures and races. The findings of such academic research are then applied to 'real life' situations such as how to create cultural synergy between people from different cultures within a business or how psychologists understand their patients. While establishing relationships with people is the most effective way to accomplish this task. give suggestions and acknowledge a mutual understanding. An example of such communication skills in the intercultural environment is to listen without judging. communicate and perceive the world around them. Its seeks to understand how people from different countries and cultures behave. They realize that there are barriers and limitations when entering a foreign territory. repeat what you understand. which can be known only through the study of the culture. beliefs and religions come together to work and communicate with each other. Without the help of intercultural communication they can unknowingly cause confusion and misunderstandings. These guidelines help prevent clashes between different cultures groups caused by misperceptions. There are many theories that set principles to help interpret the basis of intercultural communication. When communicating with someone from a different culture. Respect in all cultures in the world is a common language and by earning it through respecting other peoples culture and religion. In a nutshell the main purpose of following such theories is to earn respect from others. we must know some basic concepts. confirm meanings. What is intercultural communication? Intercultural communication in its most basic form refers to an academic field of study and research. The need for effective multicultural communication is becoming more prevalent in the world as countries do more business globally and borders disappear. For these intercultural businesses to breach the cultural barriers encountered when stepping into foreign grounds it is vital for them to fully understand the cultural differences that exist so as to prevent damaging business relations due to intercultural communication gaps.Introduction Intercultural communication is of importance to international businesses as it examines how people from different cultures. To be effective in multicultural communication we must anticipate audience expectations. Demands for intercultural communication skills are increasing as more and more businesses go global or international. 2 . These skills are simply tweaked in a direction that takes the cultural limitation into consideration.
who naturally all have different definitions of 'intercultual communication'. Successful intercultural communication is effective. Keep It Simple 3 . Hall. frequent. With the explosion of global business." For those wanting to dig a bit deeper it may be a good idea to look into the works of Edward T. productive intercultural communication has become more important. many companies need to know how best to structure their companies manage staff and communicate with customers. advertising and website design. health care and other public services due to growing multicultural populations. Triandis. What Is Successful Intercultural Business Communication? Intercultural communication occurs when people of diverse ethnic backgrounds discuss ideas and tasks in a language other than their native tongue. As business becomes more and more international. Harry C. There are many researchers and academics of note within the intercultural field. marketing.' can. psychology and communication. Clifford Geertz and Shalom Schwartz. Intercultural communication theories are now also used within the education. Intercultural communication gives them an insight into the areas they need to address or understand. Fons Trompenaars. management. Geert Hofstede.be defined as the interpersonal interaction between members of different groups. The theories developed by the researchers and academics can and have been applied to many fields such as business. which differ from each other in respect of the knowledge shared by their members and in respect of their linguistic forms of symbolic behaviour. and simple while also respecting the cultural viewpoints of all participants.. For example Karlfried Knapp defines it as "'Intercultural communication. cultural studies.The definition of intercultural communication must also include strands of the field that contribute to it such as anthropology..
Cultural respect is often reciprocated and is vital to building positive working relationships that result in successful intercultural communication. bullet point lists are helpful in identifying key information without the distraction of a long sentence. Close follow up on action items and projects will be required to compensate for cultural differences in business process. It is possible to receive an affirmative response to a request only to find out later the action was never carried through. in Thailand it is an insult to show someone the sole of your shoe.Successful intercultural communication avoids translation errors by using simple language and repeating important points in different ways. making it inappropriate for a secretary or junior staff member to make requests of an executive. Study the culture of business associates and know what is considered rude to avoid unintentional gaffes. Power of Hierarchy Many cultures are much more authoritarian when compared to the US and hierarchy is important. Successful intercultural communication compensates for these power differences by funneling directions and requests through equally ranked staff. Translators can also be invaluable in smoothing over misunderstandings that invariably arise from intercultural communication. Knowing how to properly present a business card and who receives one first can set the stage for a productive business interaction. respect and compliance are often granted based on job title and rank. sense of efficiency and problem solving. In written communications. Outside of the US. Americans tend to equalize and minimize title. whereas other cultures tend to stratify and use titles to emphasize rank and status. Successful intercultural communication entails building in more frequent checkpoints into projects with constant communication and verification of agenda items. 4 . Follow Up Culture doesn't just result in distinct languages and food traditions. For example. Avoid long. Verbal presentations should be given at a slower pace with special attention to enunciation as well as stopping to verify everyone understands what was said. Successful intercultural communication requires basic understanding of cultural mores and adapting business communication style to them as much as possible. it also affects conflict resolution. Cultural Knowledge Understanding cultural history and etiquette are keystones of successful intercultural communication. complex sentences and jargon for optimal communication. Language Learning a few key phrases such as greetings and expressions of gratitude can greatly improve intercultural communication. Making the effort to greet someone in their own language shows respectful interest in their culture and creates a receptive audience. Visual aids should be used whenever possible to highlight key points in writing.
3. but I do not understand. religions. More and more people are now communicating across intercultural lines. Correlating background information is deemed necessary and divulged. Spoken words do not fully convey the whole story as listeners are expected to read between the lines. ambiguity is avoided and spoken words have literal meaning. Brazilian: An open “no” is considered extremely hostile and rude A polite way to disagree would be “I’m not sure” or “It might be difficult. These intercultural differences can be anything from contrasting approaches to communication. primarily but not exclusively from the business world. 1. meaning messages are conveyed solely through words. Yes I hear you. misunderstandings. When different cultures come together in a business setting their differences can often cause confusion. but I will not do.” French: “Ce n’est pas possible” “It’s not possible”. In many other cultures. etiquette. The message listeners are likely to interpret is based on factors such as who is speaking. Italy and Japan. India and China. 2. 4. I agree. mistakes and the like. One area of intercultural communication that is common to most people working internationally is that of the email. Yes I hear you. Email and Intercultural Communication The modern business world demands that people from all corners of the earth communicate with one another. despite the unquestionable benefits communicating by email gives us there is a down side. … when in fact it very well could be possible but requires some negotiation between the two speakers. A manager in the USA may have staff in Germany. As anyone who works internationally can tell you. customers and clients across the globe. communication is 'implicit'. The internet allows us to send documents. and “No” means no. faiths and cultures. but I do not agree. However. Yes I am listening. 5 . I agree.Agreement and Disagreement American: “Yes” means yes. requests and information to colleagues. Intercultural communication in this context refers to people. and I will do. Japanese: Yes “Hai” means…. The spoken Word British and American communication styles are described as 'explicit'. meeting styles or body language. working with others from different nationalities. especially in the context of intercultural business communication. Yes. the importer in France may have associates in Turkey. intercultural communication is not always a smooth ride. the context and non-verbal cues. I hear you.
If that is not possible then a simple email should be sent back asking for clarification on points or even sending back closed-ended questions which can only have a 'yes' or 'no' answer. This creates communication problems and misunderstandings. Some may deem it acceptable to reply to a question with a simple "no" or "yes" while others would expect a more detailed response. However. With email communication people do not have this luxury. If one does not appreciate the fact that the writer is actually hiding their true sentiments between the lines there may be come confusion. As a conclusion. The meaning of an email will also be impacted by culture. The actual format of an email may differ across cultures. Reading such an email can be a struggle and if one word is out of place the whole meaning can be misunderstood. when this takes place within an intercultural context there is a lot of room for misunderstanding both from a linguistic and cultural point of view. Language English is without doubt the lingua franca of the modern business world. joke-phrases or swear words in an email. Others may not really care and will jump straight to the email content. while in others it is a real no-no. As a result emails have lots of potential to get lost in translation across cultural lines. The best way to approach such emails is to look beyond the form to the intent. email is becoming more and more prevalent as a way of communicating in business.When looking at the intercultural issues of email we need to look at it from two angles: 1) the issue of language and 2) the issue of culture. However. The contents of an email are also culturally dependent. Culture Intercultural communication can be tricky in a face-to-face environment. Individuals should take the necessary steps to investigate these areas and to always keep an open 6 . gestures. most do not have native language speaker proficiency. Those that have English as a second language will of course have a tendency to misspell words. instinctively people muddle through situations by reacting to body language. etc. Whether we are in Berlin or Bangkok most business emails will be in English. as we have seen. Although most people accept it as the international language. If emailing a culture that is indirect in its communication style (such as India or Japan) it is possible to get replies to requests that say neither 'yes' nor 'no'. one person may find the email too formal while the other sees it as too informal or even blunt. Either way. In some formal cultures it is expected that one starts by addressing someone with their name (and possibly surname) followed by their email. idioms. What a sentence means in Dublin may not mean the same thing in Delhi. It is important for those communicating across cultures to bear in mind that this is to be expected. facial expressions. Some cultures may accept the use of slang. puns. use poor grammar and generally not make themselves clear. invent new words.
Cultures also attribute different degrees of importance to verbal and nonverbal behavior. Nonverbal Language Nonverbal communication is hugely important in any interaction with others. interpretation of facial expressions across cultures is difficult. it is important to note that this same gesture of raised eyebrows means “No!” to an Arab. but not fear. or escalate existing conflict. They would see this as a sign of dishonesty. fear. Companies with large numbers of international staff should seek to implement codes of conduct around emails as well as investing in intercultural training for their staff. normal. and for men to display anger. For instance. a facial expression that would be recognized around the world as conveying happiness may actually express anger or mask sadness. but not anger. and it signals disagreement with the Chinese. For a Westerner who understands smiles to mean friendliness and happiness. In addition. Even 7 . Gesteland explains. raised eyebrows communicate different messages. She may do so with a smile. it signals interest or surprise.mind so as to minimise the chances of intercultural mis-communication. and effective as communication in relationships -. For example. anger. In contrast. disgust. These differences of interpretation may lead to conflict. under the circumstances. Suppose a Japanese person is explaining her absence from negotiations due to a death in her family. To North Americans. It is very important to study nonverbal language before speaking with people from a different culture. people feel uncomfortable with too much eye contact. More expressive cultures tend to have more direct. physical appearance. People in North America maintain moderate eye contact. and it is a greeting with the Filipinos. the taciturn Japanese and Germans may regard such displays as childish and immature”. This is because we tend to look for nonverbal cues when verbal messages are unclear or ambiguous. While these responses would be harmless. the British are showing skepticism with the raised eyebrow. both of which are unacceptable to show overtly. In East and Southwest Asia. touch. Differences surface with respect to which emotions are acceptable to display in various cultural settings. posture. emotional expression. research has shown that the emotions of enjoyment. it may be more social acceptable in some settings in the United States for women to show fear. Some elements of nonverbal communication are consistent across cultures. based on her cultural belief that it is not appropriate to inflict the pain of grief on others.we use different systems of understanding gestures. In China and Japan. most North Americans would not be comfortable with a person who would not look them in the eye. however. At the same time. sadness. “Latins seem to wear their hearts on their sleeves. however. Even to walk side by side talking and walking at the same time would be “impersonal and cold ”. and by whom. this smile may seem incongruous and even cold. spacial relations. as they are more likely to be across cultures (especially when different languages are being used). intense eye contact than reserved cultures. They trust people who show their feelings openly and distrust those who mask their emotions. and other nonverbal cues. Since nonverbal behavior arises from our cultural common sense -. silence. and surprise are expressed in similar ways by people around the world. the Germans are acknowledging a clever comment.our ideas about what is appropriate. for example. its importance is multiplied across cultures.
Be Patient: Working in an intercultural environment can be a frustrating affair. Thai women would interpret a loud voice as anger.” The advisor let Gesteland know that he was talking too loudly. Patience with yourself and others helps move beyond such issues and address how to avoid similar incidents in the future. 2. Another variable across cultures has to do with proxemics. and are accustomed to smaller personal spaces. we encounter very different ideas about polite space for conversations and negotiations. who “began talking around the issue politely. and too many facial or hand gestures might be a signal that someone wasn’t quite right in the head. He asked for help from the human resources consultant. using too many animated facial expressions and hand gestures. nor do they use many hand gestures when speaking. Europeans tend to stand more closely with each other when talking. He observed that the interviews with the men were going fine. Others wave their arms. North Americans tend to prefer a large amount of space. their interpretations remain culture-specific. Intercultural Communication Tips Working across cultures is a new experience for many people. or ways of relating to space. Establish Rules: Sometimes if working in a truly intercultural team it may be 8 .S. Author Richard Gesteland tells of holding interviews with Thaimen and women in an attempt to set up a business office in Thailand for a U. 1.though some facial expressions may be similar across cultures. People from these cultures do not make lots of noise in public. Even without trawling through lots of books. Things may not get done when expected. Reserved or Expressive Many cultures are quiet and reserved. Building an understanding of other people's cultures. Intercultural communication can be a dynamic and creative affair but occasionally due to the inability to interpret people correctly it can be a challenge. Crossing cultures. articles or even taking part in an intercultural communication workshop it is possible to implement some basic principles to help improve one's intercultural communication skills. perhaps because they are surrounded by it in their homes and countryside. The following intercultural communication tips are provided to help people working in international and multicultural environments get some basic insight into dealing more effectively with people and not letting culture become an issue. but the women were not responding to him well at all. communication can be tiresome and behavior may be inappropriate. their communication styles and behaviors can go a long way in improving relationships and being more successful in an intercultural environment. company. It is important to understand something about cultural starting-points and values in order to interpret emotions expressed in cross-cultural interactions.
Whether agreeing something or giving instructions.e. It is good practice to always leave a bit of spare time when considering deadlines. 5. this potential will not be realized. meetings. disagreements. Research into the area of intercultural communication and working in a multicultural environment continues to show that the culturally diverse team is usually the most inventive and vibrant. Take time to reflect on your own communication. communication. Do not expect people to sacrifice their own time to meet deadlines. 7. analyse the problem areas and work as a team to build strategies and solutions to ensure the same never occurs again. Be Positive: When faced with incidents of an intercultural nature steer clear of blame and conflict. Time: Not everyone in the world thinks "time is money". 9. Stay positive. shows the questioned you did not understand them and helps build up your bank of intercultural knowledge. 10. Understand that for many people work is low down on the priority list with things like family taking a much higher precedence. Always Check: The easiest way of minimizing the negative impact of intercultural communication is to check and double check. a minute spent double checking all parties are 'reading from the same sheet' saves hours of work later on down the line. Humour: In an intercultural environment one man's joke is another's insult. simply ask. It is a good idea to always write things down as a back up. Ask Questions: When you don't understand something or want to know why someone has behaved in a certain way. Asking questions stops you making assumptions. 8. how do we approach punctuality. Respect: The foundation of all intercultural communication is respect. However. i. By demonstrating respect you earn respect and help create more open and fruitful relationships. 3. management or motivation style and see where you can improve as an individual. 6. Be wary of differences in the sense of humour and also the acceptability of banter and the like in a business environment. The Written Word: Sometimes people who do not have English as their mother tongue will read more proficiently than they speak. Self-Reflect: A good intercultural communicator not only looks outwards but also inwards. unless businesses and individuals start to address the area of intercultural communication as a serious business issue. 9 . 4. etc? It is always a good idea to try and develop the rules as a group rather than have them imposed.necessary for all to take a step back and set down some ground rules. emails.
the response to "Are you not coming?" may be 'yes'.000. Avoid Negative Questions: Many cross cultural communication misunderstandings have been caused by the use of negative questions and answers. I am not coming.000.000. a billion in the USA is 1. Write it Down: If you are unsure whether something has been understood write it down and check. this does not mean you should speak at normal speed. Separate Questions: Try not to ask double questions such as.000. Let your listener answer one question at a time. making a point and then listening to the response. In English we answer 'yes' if the answer is affirmative and 'no' if it is negative. 10 . For example.Ten Tips for Cross Cultural Communication Here are some simple tips to help you improve your cross cultural communication skills: Slow Down: Even when English is the common language in a cross cultural situation. This can be useful when using large figures.000.' Take Turns: Cross cultural communication is enhanced through taking turns to talk.000. Slow down.000 while in the UK it is 1. meaning 'Yes. "Do you want to carry on or shall we stop here?" In a cross cultural situation only the first or second question may have been comprehended. For example. In other cultures a 'yes' or 'no' may only be indicating whether the questioner is right or wrong. speak clearly and ensure your pronunciation is intelligible.
Effective communication between colleagues from different cultural backgrounds ensures a team is working harmoniously. British sarcasm usually has a negative effect abroad. This is a very effective way of ensuring accurate cross cultural communication has taken place. Maintain Etiquette: Many cultures have certain etiquette when communicating. The six steps to intercultural communication are basic pointers that all working in intercultural teams should be aware of to ensure culture becomes a vehicle for positive advancement rather than a barrier. support and a trust in you. The danger is that the words will be understood but the meaning missed. Check Meanings: When communicating across cultures never assume the other party has understood. Within the business world intercultural communication is vital for success. It is always a good idea to undertake some cross cultural awareness training or at least do some research on the target culture. Summarise what has been said in order to verify it. people need to assess their assumptions and ask themselves why 11 . Watch the humour: In many cultures business is taken very seriously. One element of this complexity is the mixing of different cultures. The Six Steps to Intercultural Communication We live in an increasingly complex world. Avoid Slang: Even the most well educated foreigner will not have a complete knowledge of slang. Cross cultural communication is about dealing with people from other cultures in a way that minimises misunderstandings and maximises your potential to create strong cross cultural relationships. For example. The above tips should be seen as a starting point to greater cross cultural awareness. 1. Be an active listener. When using humour think whether it will be understood in the other culture. idioms and sayings. languages and faiths. Assumptions are beliefs rather than objective truth and are usually influenced by a number of subjective factors.Be Supportive: Effective cross cultural communication is in essence about being comfortable. Break Assumptions Everyone makes or has assumptions about others. Giving encouragement to those with weak English gives them confidence. For intercultural communication to truly work. Professionalism and protocol are constantly observed. Many cultures will not appreciate the use of humour and jokes in the business context.
5. Intercultural communication is based upon people thinking through words and actions to ensure they do not act inappropriately. Intercultural communication can only flourish and therefore contribute if people are encouraged to think as individuals. People need to be aware how to interact with people with respect and knowledge. Through thinking things out and have background knowledge to intercultural differences much of the communication problems witnessed within business could be avoided. you attack their culture and therefore their dignity. empathy is vital.e. Shun Insensitive Behaviour People can and do behave in culturally insensitive ways. i. The people that count in any business from the suppliers to clients to employees are increasingly based in remote locations in foreign countries. 4. bring their cultural influences to the table and share ideas that may be outside the box. 6. Empathise In order to come to appreciate and understand people from different cultures. Such a way of thinking curbs creativity. 12 . This can only be divisive. 3. Intercultural communication is essentially founded upon wisdom. When insensitive behaviour is witnessed it is the responsibility of all to shun it and ensure it remains unacceptable. the initial barrier to intercultural communication is overcome. By attacking someone's person. Intercultural Communication in the Global Workplace Today's companies are doing business more and more in a global context. The need for effective and clear intercultural communication is becoming vital in securing success in today's global workplace. innovation and advancement as people are restricted in how to think. Be Wise Wisdom is not called wisdom for nothing. showing maturity of thought and action in dealing with people. 2. Using intercultural diversity is in essence a more creative approach to problem solving as it incorporates different points of view.they hold those ideas or beliefs. Involve Involving others in tasks or decision making empowers and builds strong relationships. By doing so and even openly examining them with others. Through putting yourself in someone else's shoes you come to see or appreciate their point of view. Discourage Herd Mentality Herd mentality refers to a closed and one dimensional approach. approach and engage with people or challenges.
cross cultural communication refers to interpersonal communication and interaction across different cultures. and get it right the first time. Companies and individuals looking to do business within the global workplace often fail to address such areas before doing business abroad. However. In conclusion. greet. This leads to better business. As people are forced to think outside the box they develop greater interpersonal skills and learn new ways of doing things. Whether someone is looking for a new supplier.Intercultural communication has many definitions. At its foundation is the desire to establish and understand how people from different cultures communicate with each other and help people improve this. These basic skills help nurture a sympathetic. etiquette. is proving to have a positive effect on individuals and companies. patience and self-awareness.. Cross Cultural Communication needs. personal and intuitive approach to doing business that lends itself to working with the unknown. This has become an important issue in 13 . inquisitiveness. Greater understanding of intercultural differences. This is achieved through research. people with intercultural communication skills are those with certain key competencies and characteristics. experience. build relationships and much more. It impacts our ability to communicate effectively within a culture as well as how we are perceived. protocol and communication as well as more informed planning will certainly lead to a much higher probability of achieving business goals. giving a presentation.. Within the context of the global workplace. This can and does lead to poor performance and lost deals. this is only a firm foundation. endeavour to communicate. manage. meet. Those that do well working with other cultures usually demonstrate open-mindedness. Individuals also need to acquire operational tools and practical skills to help them express themselves and adapt their style and approach to the needs of the target culture. from differing cultural backgrounds. or negotiating a contract intercultural communication can. approach deadlines. Why? Because today business is highly competitive and fast changing. intercultural communication looks at how people communicate (verbally and non-verbally). does and will play an important role. Within the business context. It draws on areas such as cultural anthropology and other areas of communication to build an academic framework. In short intercultural communication looks at how people. work together. although a necessity. negotiate. Etiquette and protocol aside. Intercultural communication today means getting a competitive edge. the need for intercultural communication skill is obvious . Working in the global workplace. intercultural training courses and asking colleagues. People need to get it right.we are all working in an interconnected global economy and it is important to build good relationships with people from other cultures.
Cross cultural communication is critical to the business world. Rather. listening is a key skill that many business personnel do not exercise enough. borders. Speaking well is not about accent. Effective cross cultural communication is concerned with overcoming cultural differences across nationality. Flexibility 14 . attentive listening is critical to be able to understand meanings. customers or clients. better customer relations and effective client management are all areas that will reap benefits through cross cultural understanding. Speaking Skills Listening and speaking must work in tandem for effective cross cultural communication. Asking questions expands your cross cultural knowledge. The diversity of people in cities and countries means an element of cross cultural communication will always be needed whether it is between staff. Improved staff interaction. Awareness of cultural differences can favourably impact the success of a business. cross cultural communication is enhanced through positive speech such as encouragement. interaction and behaviour. affirmation. Through patience respect is won and cross cultural understanding is enhanced. religion. Observation Large amounts of cross cultural information can be read in people's dress. read between the lines and enable to empathise with the speaker.our age of globalisation and internationalisation. culture and behaviour. colleagues. For cross cultural communication. recognition and phrasing requests clearly or expressing opinions sensitively. Patience Man has been created differently and we need to recognise and understand that sometimes cross cultural differences are annoying and frustrating. Although cross cultural communication competency can only be truly achieved through cross cultural awareness training. Listening Skills Although emphasis usually lies on being a competent speaker. In these situations patience is definitely a virtue. use of grammar and vocabulary or having the gift of the gab. language acquisition. foreign travel and cultural immersion there are some guidelines that can enhance your cross cultural communication skills. body language. Be aware of differences with your own culture and try to understand the roots of behaviours.
Some key areas which cross cultural consultants deal with include. problems can occur. Cross cultural solutions to international business demands are increasingly being viewed as a valid and necessary method in enhancing communication and interaction in and between companies. adaptability and open-mindedness are the route to successful cross cultural communication. These cross cultural differences then follow on through to high level areas such as management styles. 15 . but are not exclusive to. relocation. norms. Following these five cross cultural communication needs will allow for improved lines of communication. cross cultural consultants offer the expertise. As with incompatible software. better cross cultural awareness and more successful cross cultural relationships. Within companies there are many facets in which cultural differences manifest. the following: Cross Cultural HR: HR covers a wide range of business critical areas that need cross cultural analysis. etiquette. HR and PR. Cross cultural consultancies are involved in aiding companies to find solutions to the challenges cross cultural differences carry. technological advances and the increase in the number of companies dealing on the international stage have brought about a dramatic change in the frequency. marketing. Consultants may offer advice on a number of areas including recruitment. values. between companies and customers and between colleagues. group mechanics and non-verbal communication. Understanding. staff retention and training programmes. international assignments. mutual trust and creative thinking. expressions. if people are running on different cultural coding. specialist attention is required in the form of a cross cultural consultant. context and means by which people from different cultural backgrounds interact. As one would approach a doctor for a medical diagnosis or an accountant to examine finances.Flexibility. Different cultures and cultural backgrounds between a highly diverse staff base brings with it obstacles. challenges and difficulties. In order to overcome potential pitfalls. Cross cultural consultancies therefore concentrate their efforts on interpersonal communication. Cross cultural differences manifest in general areas such as in behaviour. Cross Cultural Solutions for International Business Globalisation. experience and know-how to diagnose problems and provide solutions to interpersonal cultural differences. the expansion of intercontinental trade. corporate culture. embracing and addressing cross cultural differences leads to the breaking of cultural barriers which results in better lines of communication. International and national businesses are ultimately the result of people.
Clearly. business practices and social etiquettes all help to minimise the impact of culture shock and hence smooth their transition overseas. closure and etiquette in order to increase the chance of a successful outcome. This is essentially done through highlighting differences and building on strengths to ensure they are used positively. It is crucial to understand whether the brand name. image or advertising campaign is culturally applicable in the target country. country. planning. Cross Cultural Negotiations: equipped with their knowledge of the two or more cultures that can be meeting around the negotiation table. Cross cultural consultants will provide tools and methods to promote staff integration. norms. with different religions. Cross cultural consultancies provide language training to business staff. culture. values and etiquettes can occasionally lead to problems. Knowledge of the country's history. Cross Cultural PR Consultancy: brand image. Cross Cultural Synergy: international mergers. public relations and advertising are all areas companies must be careful of when moving out of the national context. traditions. Cross Cultural Training for Expatriate Relocation: staff that travel overseas need to understand the cultural basics of the host country or region. Cross cultural consultants counsel on group mechanics. communication styles. Tastes and values change dramatically from continent to continent. The aim is to equip the trainee with the adequate knowledge to deal comfortably with people from different cultures. styles. customers or clients from different cultural backgrounds. images. a cross cultural consultant advises on areas such as negotiation strategies. pictures. Cross Cultural Awareness Training: working with colleagues. suspicions and general cross cultural communication breakdown. free from misunderstandings. Cross cultural consultants examine words. reduce cross cultural conflicts and build team spirit. region or religion. colours and symbols to ensure they fit well with the target culture. values and integration processes. acquisitions and joint-ventures require people from different cultural backgrounds to harmonise in order to succeed. Linguistic knowledge goes a long way in bridging cultural gaps and smoothing lines of communication. the role and expertise of cross cultural communication consultants is important 16 . Cross Cultural Language Training: Language training is an area where little investment is made by companies. communication is critical. moulding their learning to the business environment in which they work. laws. Cross cultural awareness training is usually a generic introduction into a culture. avoiding misunderstandings and mistakes.Cross Cultural Team-Building: in order to have a well functioning business unit within a company. but where the business advantages are great.
we can have a successful intercultural business communication. we can say that only knowing and applying these concepts. a cross cultural consultant creates bridges of understanding and opens lines of communication. knowledge and above all objectivity. clients and customers is crucial for business success. Conclusion In conclusion. 17 . between colleagues. This integration. In essence a cross cultural consultant's primary objective is integration. Equipped with experience.for today's international business. The potential pitfalls cross cultural differences present to companies are extensive.