LinkedIn Intercultural Competence Discussion


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LinkedIn discussion regarding Intercultural Competence, hope you can join us

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LinkedIn Intercultural Competence Discussion

  1. 1. Account Type: Business Kevin Carter Add ConnectionsHome Profile Contacts Groups Jobs Inbox 84 Search Companies More Groups The Diversity and Inclusion Group Discussions Members Promotions Jobs Search More... Start a discussion 1 of 20 Next » Intercultural Competence Updates: Last 7 Days Thought I would share .... the article just touches the surface because the author is really describing cultural protocol realities ... the true learning is raising the cultural competence of Kevin Carter and 2 more leaders that they have an awareness of the culture that they represent, foster and have a commented on: bias towards; a recognition of how that culture is different than the one they are in and their Intercultural Competence ability to adapt and integrate the cultures of others .... 17 minutes ago 24 comments 5 days ago The Cobra Was O.K.; The Duck Tongue Not So Much New York Times Ana Isabel B. B. Paraguay started a discussion: Cultural delights and minefields characterize business travel for Gary Pomerantz, executive Obama FCC Caves on Net vice president of the international engineering firm WSP Flack & Kurtz. Neutrality - Tuesday Betrayal Assured (by Huffington Post) 1 hour ago Like Add comment Like Comment Stop Following Flag More Michal Fineman commented on: Do ERGs benefit companies in Hamlin Grange likes this international market entry? 3 hours ago Like 2 comments 24 comments • Jump to most recent comments See all updates » Marc Brenman • Kevin, if I understand your correctly, you are making a very good point that people need to understand their own culture as well as different ones. 5 days ago Follow Marc Hamlin Grange • Marc and Kevin...In fact, I would say that the first step in the journey to becoming more culturally competent is to have a greater understanding of your own cultural world-view. 5 days agoFollow Hamlin Peter Bye • Thanks for sharing it Kevin. A fascinating article. As you say, it deals entirely in the visible or objective aspects of culture - foods, interaction protocols, meanings of colors. Perhaps the author explored the deeper subjective and non-visible aspects of culture that form the basis for the objective aspects he discussed in the article - the underlying beliefs and values - although these subjective aspects certainly Latest Post Peter are not addressed in the article. As written it seems to focus on a conventional "do /Stop Following dont" list. Obama FCC Caves on Net Neutrality - Tuesday Betrayal Those deeper aspects are the ones that determine how we see the world and interact Assured (by Huffington Post) with others. The deeper understanding coming from intercultural expertise is the source Ana Isabel B. B. Paraguay See all » of creating competitive advantage through diversity and cultural difference. Hamlin - I share your thought about greater understanding of ones worldview being a Top Influencers This Week critical step. This is one of the truly profound benefits of the Intercultural Development Inventory. It measures a persons or groups worldview or mindset regarding diversity Kevin Carter and cultural difference, and provides a basis for further development. 5 days ago David Lipscomb Pearl Jones, SPHR • The article is a great illustration of Intent vs Impact. It also makes a serious point in a lighthearted way about the importance of cultural competence for Damian Hanft everyone, but especially for those whose work and travel globally. Taking the time to learn more about the customs and mores of the people and places to where he travelled could have prevented some faux pas. Joel Martin Follow Pearl 5 days ago Ana Isabel B. B. Paraguay Kevin Carter • Marc, Hamlin, Peter and Pearl, I appreciated your feedback. What struck me was the combination of what we all are saying ... while it is important to understand how to behave appropriately in other
  2. 2. cultures, intercultural competence is not simply adopting certain protocols, or as Peter stated - a "do / dont list." It is the awareness that each of us, and our corresponding behavior, represent and create of culture for others that is either accepting or negating of their culture. This process not only happens when we travel abroad but also happens right here in the US when supervisors attempt to coach, correct or improve the performance of their direct-reports not realizing that it is the supervisor whose behavior is creating a work climate, or culture, that is fostering low performance. How many leaders ask themselves the question: "what about me (or my behavior) is preventing you from reaching your full potential?" 2 days ago Marc Brenman • Thanks, Kevin. I do not entirely agree with this: "it is the supervisor whose behavior is creating a work climate, or culture, that is fostering low performance." While it is the duty of the supervisor to assign work, make sure that staff have the tools they need to do the work, to set expectations, and to evaluate objectively; and the responsibility of management to ensure a good work culture; my experience is that someFollow Marc staff are just better at what they do and work harder and more responsibly than others. Staff bear a great deal of responsibility for work culture. 2 days ago Kevin Carter • Hi Marc, I mostly agree with what you are saying but let me provide an example. Lets say I am a manager whose strength is "communicating" or "getting to the bottom- line" but I have the habit of over-communicating, or dominantly conversation and getting to the bottom-line so quickly that I cut off debate, or the introduction of new ideas. I am creating a work climate for my direct reports that will unconsciously benefit some and unfairly penalize others. I may also be rating some direct reports poorly because they "dont speak up," or "show initiative," even though it is me who is taking initiative out of the work culture and discouraging others from speaking up. I believe that everyone is like me - that if they have something to say, they will fight and push to be heard (and those that dont - are not a good fit). I would say that thats managers intercultural competence is low ... they are not aware of the work culture that their behavior is creating. They are not aware of how their strengths - in excess - are preventing others from reaching their full potential. 2 days ago Marc Brenman • Weve all had to adjust to a supervisor whose style was not the same as ours. The objective of a workplace is not reaching the full potential of the staff, but getting the work done well, on time, at a reasonable cost. Some workplaces arent as "fun" as others. A rating system should be as objective as possible. Feedback should be frequent. A supervisory skill is knowing that some employees do fine work quietly, andFollow Marc some with more "speaking up." "Speaking up" is sometimes evaluated negatively, for example, when some minority employees are coded in a discriminatory way as being "uppity." (To bring the conversation back to diversity and inclusion issues.) 2 days ago Kevin Carter • Marc, I dont necessarily agree with "the objective of a workplace is not reaching the full potential of the staff, but getting the work done well, on time, at a reasonable cost." I believe it is both, especially when most companies today are attempting to generate new products, services and innovations to serve increasingly diverse and global markets. I also believe our whole conversation has been about diversity, I began with cultural diversity and transitioned to discussing the diversity of work styles or orientations that individuals have and a managers ability to be adaptive to them (just as a leader would want to be adaptive to cultural differences in another country). I think you are raising an excellent point regarding why some minority employees would not "speak up." As you suggest, the interculturally competent manager would attempt to create a work culture (through their behavior, speech, etc.) that would incorporate that employees ideas, suggestions and recommendations. He would help them reach their full potential in the pursuit of business outcomes. 2 days ago Hamlin Grange • Wonderful conversation! I truly believe that cultural competence is the "end game" it were.
  3. 3. Diversity is merely the starting point or floor. I have conducted many sessions with managers and eyes glaze over whenever "cultural competence" is mentioned. And I cannot always blame them. I believe it is vital for usFollow Hamlin as diversity and inclusion professionals to give real-life examples, as each of you has done, to illustrate what cultural competence means and the role managers/supervisors play in this. It is not just about "those people", it is about "all of us people." 1 day ago Neal Goodman • All of our programs are about cultural competence and the first step is to understand youself, your own culture and cultural assumptions and biases. Only then can you focus on the "other" culture and its assumptions etc. Neal Follow Neal 23 hours ago Kevin Carter • Thank you, Hamlin and Neal (and everyone) for your thoughts! Neal, from your work, can you highlight an example where managers who do not understand themselves, their culture and their cultural assumptions and biases pre- judge the performance of others? As Hamlin mentioned, managers "eye glaze over whenever cultural competence is mentioned." Also, how do they begin the journey to self-awareness. Thanks. 21 hours ago Marc Brenman • Although I admire and respect Hamlin greatly, it has not been my experience that managers eyes glaze over when cultural competence is mentioned. In regard to "where managers who do not understand themselves, their culture and their cultural assumptions and biases pre-judge the performance of others," the last, cultural assumptions, can shade over into discrimination. And cultural assumptions flow bothFollow Marc ways. As a white Jewish male, I ofter encounter professional situations in my business, social justice, in which people belonging to or self-identifying with other groups cant figure out what Im doing in their affairs, as if they had a monopoly on dealing with certain kinds of equity issues. There are often more commonalities than appear on the surface. For example, I recently read an article about Israeli and Palestinian high tech workers contracting for work, and finding that they share cultural similarities that make working together easy. One example given was the alleged preference of both groups to speak openly and vociferously about concerns. 20 hours ago Neal Goodman • Kevin, People come to our seminars, coaching etc. knowing that they want to develop their Cultural Intelligence so there is no need to make the case for it. An example would be an American Executive who is being assigned to take over as President of a Japanese subsidiary of his Ameican company. He had to do a very deep dive into what it means Follow Neal to be an American, and an American leader, before he could be open to an alternative leadership stlye that made him succesful in Japan. He admited that when he got to Japan everything seemed stupid but he understood that there was a rationale he had to learn and he did.There are thousands of other examples bot domestic and global. 19 hours ago Kevin Carter • Thank you, Neal! Marc, I tend to experience what Hamlin is describing when I initially speak with managers: a) having a self-awareness regarding ones own biases is somehow embedded in simply being a good manager and doesnt need be addressed separately; b) discussing commonalities is more important than discussing differences in getting work accomplished or c) its my job as a manager to set the priorities and parameters for what work is done and how it is accomplished and my direct reports role to complete those priorities and fit within those parameters. As you suggest, however, no group or individual has a hold or lock on intercultural competence. And individuals should be open to see and experience the commonalities that they have with others. For example, as an African American male, I may have more in common with a majority male than another African American male. It would depend on what has defined my identity and culture. It would also not lessen the possibility, however, that another African American male and I would also uniquely share and identify with impact of race in the US.
  4. 4. Really excellent discussion! 19 hours ago Melissa Patrick • This is a fascinating conversation. I find it fascinating because there has been no mention of how power, privilege, and oppression play into interpersonal communication across human differences. I define differences as: cultural; racial; gender; class; etc. Managers/supervisors by virtue of their position have a power or authority that will have an effect on their direct report’s behavior. All over the world, menFollow Melissa and women have been socialized in different ways (as is exemplified in the article), and this creates a communication dynamic involving privilege and power. Finally, if you consider heterosexism, certainly straight people have the advantage of not having to orchestrate a “coming out” because we have the privilege of belonging to the mainstream, dominant social group. My point is that group membership matters. Kevin, you say it so well, that you may relate to other African American men because you belong to the same racial group and therefore have some shared experiences pertaining to race and racism. You can also relate to men who are not Black because you belong to the same gender group. Marc, as a White Jewish male, you mention the misperceptions or confusion that other people have of you because of who you are and what you do. I wonder why your service as an ally/activist in social justice efforts is misunderstood. I agree with your sentiment Marc, and I suspect we are not alone, that as humans we have much more in common than we realize. I also believe that we can not underestimate the influence that our group experiences have on 1) our life experiences 2) how we interact with others and nature, and 3) our worldviews, beliefs, and values. Hamlin and Neal, I also agree that before we can understand others, we need to gain a deeper understanding of our own identity. I have had participants in workshops I deliver come to the realization that absolute behavioral objectivity is not possible, and yet if we are aware of how our own privilege and internalized oppression (social locations) influences our interactions and impacts others, we can do a much better job at being competent communicators across lines of difference. Or as Pearl, pointed out, we will be less likely to commit those faux pas that insult, offend, and shame others. 14 hours ago Marc Brenman • Hi Melissa, I was probably not sufficiently clear. It is not my "service as an ally/activist in social justice efforts" that is misunderstood (usually). It is sometimes my physical presence in the business, especially when people are dealing with first impressions. For example, the chair of a commission I worked for as executive director said very early in our relationship, "Youre just a plain old white guy." (Luckily her Follow Marc predecessor had hired me!) On the other hand, after the recent passage of the repeal in the Senate of Dont Ask Dont Tell, a couple of prominent LGBT activists told me they appreciated my service as an ally. So this argues for reserving judgment and getting to know the other person. Were all sometimes guilty of mistakes. After many years in this business, I still make them. And, according to the theories of Unconscious Bias (borne out in hundreds of thousands of tests) we are all guilty of prejudice and stereotyping. Is this due to socialization? It appears not, from the very wide variety of people from many places who show implicit bias. But we can to some extent control our behaviors as they have an effect on other people. 13 hours ago Kevin Carter • Hi Melisa, Hi Marc, Melisa, I am blown-away by your statement "absolute behavioral objectivity is not possible." That statement nails it! If managers just believed and acted like "absolute behavioral objectivity is not possible," they would view their behaviors with a skepticism that would allow room for direct reports to insert what drives and motivates them. They would also be open to the possibility that they may unconsciously favor some and not others. There was so much in your comments that was outstanding ... the phrase "absolute behavioral objectivity is not possible" just snatched me. Thank you! 13 hours ago Neal Goodman • Marc, if not socialization then what? We are all a result of our socialization (our cultural DNA) and our biological DNA. While the biological does have an impact it is through socialization that we learn how and what to judge positively or negatively and it teaches us about power as well. Even "The Authoritarian Personality" was based on diffrences in socialization. Follow Neal Kevin and others. There appears to be a wide dicrepency in the meaning of Cultural Competence. Power exists in all cultures but how it is done differs by culture. Within cultures power is one of the most important aspects of Diversity but not the only one. If introduced properly, power can be an important learning tool. Neal
  5. 5. 2 hours ago Kevin Carter • Hi Neal, My definition of "intercultural competence" is the capability to accurately understand and adapt behavior to cultural difference and commonality. I define culture as the norms and expected behaviors of a group, or a learned and complex set of instructions on how one relates to the world. My experience comes from some travel and work outside of the US and from providing IDI profile reports Unlike many of the people taking part in this discussion, I have not lived outside the US for an extended period of time so I find the discussion an excellent opportunity to learn and grow professionally and intellectually. In terms of Power, are you meaning someones preference for hierarchy or equity that is different in different cultures? I think Melisa is also referencing that "gender equity" has a very different meaning in different cultures. Combined together, is it possible that US majority males expect to be in the power position visa via women or minorities? I am sure it depends on other aspects of a persons personality. What is the learning here for the management of people within a corporate setting? 1 hour ago Neal Goodman • Kevin. There is much complexity here. First, I must admit (as a social psychologist) that I find the IDI to not be the best approach to deal with this, though I understand why people see it as a solution. The field of intercultural relations and the field of diversity are not the same, yet there is much overlap. Many Diversity specialists have recently "found" cultural competence but they have little grounding in the field ofFollow Neal intercultural relations so they jump to simple solutions. Likewise there are few in the intecultural field who really understand diversity and inclusion and the importance of power that this entails. What it means for managers in a corporate setting is that they need to build their cultural competence to work effectively with people from other national cultural backgrounds and they need to develop D&I skills to be able to see and deal with the hidden biases, power differentials etc. so that their interactions within the workplace, markets etc. are as inclusive as possible. After 47 years doning this and training hundreds of thousands of corporate managers and leaders I am always learning something new and surprised by how much there is still to learn. I have several related articles on our website under resources if you are interested. 29 minutes ago Neal Goodman • Kevin and others. Sorry the correct link to the articles is I am also sending a link to a recent artice on Global Diversity which is very critical and which few organization are approching effectively. media#diversity_execFollow Neal Good luck. Neal 21 minutes ago Marc Brenman • Hi Neal; in regard to your question, "if not socialization then what?" I take your question to be in the context of implicit or unconscious bias. Im not a wild enthusiast for this theory, though as the test results accumulate, Im coming around...I think the originators might say that the human mind and consciousness operate at a deep level that goes beyond socialization, which is more on the surface and operatesFollow Marc for one generation only. Our brains are the result of millions of years of evolution and survival. Even under the best of circumstances, neuroplasticity (the ability of the brain to "rewire" itself) works only for one generation. For example, even people raised in homes in which there is tolerance and acceptance for others, including an accepting religious belief structure, will still show results of prejudice and discrimination on the implicit bias tests. Even African-Americans will show prejudice against other African-Americans. (I acknowledge that some would say that this is due to imposed societal self-hate.) Some psychiatrists say that "insight never cured anything other than ignorance." If this is true (if somewhat exaggerated) then intercultural education only reaches the surface manifestations. 20 minutes ago Kevin Carter • Hi Neal, Thank you. I will visit ( and read I am not sure that D&I professionals are jumping to simple solutions as much as
  6. 6. attempting to learn models or processes that will assist them to learn, grow and be more effective in the intercultural competence and intercultural relations fields. Models or processes like IDI, or Cultural Navigator, etc. are probably a jumping off point for further growth for many. What would you say are the key tenets of intercultural relations that are different than D&I and visa-versa? I will review the material on your website, as well, thank you for sharing it. Kevin 18 minutes ago Marc Brenman • Thanks, Neal, I always enjoy your articles and insights. I share your concern with the IDI and most other test and questionnaire-oriented instruments. Though I thought the example Kevin supplied was interesting. In regard to your discussion of the difference between intercultural relations and diversity, I agree, particularly with this: "they need to develop D&I skills to be able to see and deal with the Follow Marc hidden biases, power differentials etc." As I have tried to point out elsewhere, D+I are built on a foundation of nondiscrimination, equity, civil rights laws, and redress systems. Intercultural relations has no such foundation, legitimately so, because it usually crosses national borders. As in your own valuable and long background, it is based on social psychology and not law. Efforts in international human rights law, especially in Europe, try to overcome this gap. And as shown in Europe, the two are often not a good fit. Merkel disses Turkish-Germans for failing to assimilate, France and Italy cast out Roma, Switzerland bans minarets on mosques, Belgium bans veils, the UK indulges in caste discrimination, etc. 1 second ago • Reply privately • Flag as inappropriate Add a comment... Send me an email for each new comment. Add Comment Ads by LinkedIn Members Meridiths Catering Great Business Exposure! Full service corporate and residential Join Whos Who now at no charge and catering, from Board Room to Galas. get maximum exposure for your business!Customer Service About Blog Careers Advertising Recruiting Solutions Tools Mobile Developers Publishers Language Upgrade My AccountLinkedIn Corporation © 2010 User Agreement Privacy Policy Copyright Policy Help improve LinkedIn