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Techniques of Cross-cultural Communication
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Techniques of Cross-cultural Communication


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  • 16-1 This opening slide allows you to discuss the importance of communicating across cultures – both domestically and internationally. This chapter discusses cultural differences, problems in communicating with those for whom English is a second language, and suggestions for improving cross-cultural communication. The photo on this slide shows students from Japan demonstrating to an American student the appropriate way to present a business card. You could use it to lead to a discussion of similarities and differences between cultures.
  • 16-2 This overview slide introduces the material to be covered in this chapter.
  • 16-3 This slide can be used for an interactive discussion. Ask students to give examples they know of that support each of the points given here. Thanks to technology even political campaigns are now global. Italy is one country on the forefront of allowing its expatriates representation by setting aside seats in its Senate and lower house for them. In 2005, a resident of New York and one from San Diego ran for a seat representing the district that includes the US, Canada, Mexico, Cuba, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Belize. One requirement for the job is that they must be in Rome for every vote.
  • 16-4 This slide sets up more discussion on cultural differences.
  • 16-5 The points on the slide can be used interactively by asking students for examples that support each of these points. While many are listed in the textbook, they may be able to give personal examples from their interactions at school or work with those from other cultures.
  • 16-6 This slide identifies some widely used and easily recognized gestures in America. It shows how those in other cultures may misinterpret these simple gestures. This can start some lively discussion, especially if you have students from other cultures or those who have first-hand experience with those from other cultures.
  • 16-7 This slide can be used for interactive discussion. It identifies values which, in other cultures, may be very different from ours. You may want to tie in the text box on the Japanese exchange of business cards with the value of gift giving.
  • 16-8 This slide lists the effects of these techniques on business communication in other cultures.
  • 16-9 You can use this slide to illustrate the spelling and meaning differences between British and American English.
  • 16-10 This slide identifies some of the problems the language imposes on communication across cultures. It can be used for interactive discussion and followed up with detailed examples of two-word verbs and American idioms.
  • 16-11 This slide illustrates some examples of language equivalency problems. It primes further examples that students cite.
  • 16-12 This slide lists a few words that can be used interactively to highlight multiple meanings by asking students to give examples of various meanings.
  • 16-13 This slide can be used for interactive discussion. You can reveal the substitutes as students give suggestions.
  • 16-14 This overview slide gives category examples of culturally derived words. Ask students to cite examples from each of the categories.
  • 16-15 The examples shown on this slide clearly point out the trouble those not familiar with these idioms would have in interpreting them. You may want to select one or two to discuss the problem and a way to solve it.
  • 16-16 This slide reviews the positive steps one can take to help communicate clearly across cultures.
  • 16-17 This slide and the following four show a Web tool, Foreign Language for Travelers, that helps business travelers with oral communication in other languages. It teaches basic terms in selected categories such as travel, business, and such. It also provides links to several other useful sources for help with learning specific languages.
  • 16-18
  • 16-19
  • 16-20
  • 16-21 This slide illustrates a Web tool,, that helps businesses do business globally with its translation tools for several languages.
  • 16-22 This slide illustrates how Altavista’s translate feature translates from English to other languages. It works on entire web pages as well as with words, phrases, and sentences.
  • 16-23 This slide helps companies do business by easily showing the currency equivalents. Here one is determining what $100US is in Euros.
  • 16-24 On this day and time, $100US is equivalent to 77.9522 euros.
  • 16-25 Another tool that helps one learn languages is a cell/mobile phone translation tool.
  • 16-26 Web browers, too, allow one to convert web pages in various languages to other languages.
  • 16-27 This closing quote from a prominent research group analyst emphasizes the importance of understanding those from other cultures and working to communicate effectively with them.
  • Transcript

    • 1. Techniques of Cross-cultural Communication chapter sixteen McGraw-Hill/Irwin © 2008 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
    • 2. Overview
      • The Importance of Cross-cultural Communication in Business
      • Problems of Cultural Differences
      • Problems of Language
      • Some Solutions for Improved Communication
    • 3. Why is communicating across cultures important to business?
      • Technological advances have made doing business more global.
      • Understanding those who buy and use a company’s products or services helps you design ones that fit your customers’ needs.
      • Successful communication improves productivity and creates a comfortable workplace.
      • Communicating with those from other cultures enriches your business and personal life.
    • 4. Problems of Cultural Differences
      • Body positions and movement
      • Views and practices concerning factors of human relationships
      • Effects on business communication techniques
    • 5. Body Positions and Movements
      • Body Parts
      • Gestures
      • Eye Contact
      • Touching and Handshaking
      • Facial Expression
    • 6. Some Gesture Differences Your spouse is unfaithful (Italy) Good luck (Brazil and Venezuela) Hook’em Horns (Texas) Vertical horns Strong, sexual insulting (Nigeria and Australia) Fine, Good going, Everything is okay (America) Thumbs up Double, sexual, insulting (with palm in) (England) Victory or peace (with palm out) (America) Raised hand, fingers in “V” position Rude to point a finger (Japan) Come here (America) Raised hand with index finger extended, head high No (Europe) Good-bye (America) Hand up, palm out, wrist stiff, back and forth motion Meaning 2 Meaning 1 Gesture
    • 7. Attitudes Toward Factors of Human Relationships
      • Time
      • Space
      • Odors
      • Frankness
      • Intimacy of Relationships
      • Values
      • Expression of Emotions
    • 8. Effects on Business Communication Techniques
      • Our communication techniques are not universally acceptable.
      • Our techniques do not work with all English-speaking people.
      • Problems can be overcome by learning about other cultures.
    • 9. British English vs. American English Trash Bin Pants Trousers Panty hose Tights Billion (9 zeros) Billion (12 zeros) Fries Chips Called Phones Guys Blokes Elevator Lift Word Differences Mom Mum Generalize Generalise Labor Labour Spelling Differences American British
    • 10. Problems of Language
      • Lack of language equivalency
      • Difficulties in using English
        • Multiple meanings of words
        • Two-word verbs
        • Culturally derived words
    • 11. Language Equivalency Examples
      • No such word
        • The Japanese have several words to define fine shadings of dependence, obligations, and responsibility that are difficult to translate to English because our culture has not learned to experience them.
      • No need for the word
      • No equivalent grammatical form
    • 12. Examples of Multiple Meanings
      • run
      • fast
      • ring
    • 13. Substitutes for Two-word Verbs search track down hold tie down prevent shut out kill put away remove, overcome live down excited, nervous keyed up clown cut up Substitute Two-word Verb
    • 14. Avoid Culturally Derived Words
      • Slang expressions
      • Shifted use (sports, computer, science)
      • Idioms and colloquialisms
    • 15. Some American Idioms to Avoid
      • burn your bridges
      • cold turkey
      • doggie bag
      • fat chance
      • gravy train
      • have your cake and eat it too
      • in a nutshell
      • let the cat out of the bag
      • pot calling the kettle black
      • pull no punches
      • stick in the mud through thick and thin
      • tie the knot
      • tighten one’s belt
      • up a tree
      • walk on air
      • wheel and deal
      • worth one’s salt
    • 16. Suggestions for Communicating Across Cultures Successfully
      • Talk or write as simply and clearly as possible
      • Word questions carefully
        • Avoid double questions
        • Avoid yes/no questions
        • Avoid negative questions
      • Use continuous confirmation
        • Use back translating when possible
        • Use technology to assist with written and oral communication
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    • 27. “ More than technical or infrastructure problems, cultural problems will be the biggest issue that merchants will face in the global marketplace.” --Bruce Guptill, Analyst The Gartner Group