By Leah Angott, Christina Bitens,
Sean Haywood, Jeff Hutchison,
This can be hard to achieve
◦ Usually it’s like a game of telephone, where the
message gets completely turned around by the time
it gets to the correct person.
Usually the listener hears what they want to
hear and not what the person is trying to tell
◦ The listener goes in to the situation with their mind
made up on what they will hear and how they will
react to it.
Video on Effective Communication (it’s a little
long, watch the first 3 minutes and you’ll
catch the drift of what he’s saying- it’s pretty
This relates to how a person hears what they want and
not what is being told to them because of their frame
of mind going into the situation.
The best way to communicate effectively and
have no confusion is to:
◦ Avoid slang, be brief, be precise, and know when to
Ask person to repeat what they said.
Check to see if the listener understands what
you are saying.
Summarize the main points.
◦ Do this instead of going on a long winded
Talk in a language the listener would
◦ Don’t use medical terminology when talking to
someone who isn’t a doctor.
Make eye contact
◦ Helpful to the person if they have a hearing
problem (they know you are talking to them and not
Determine if the person can speak freely
◦ This is especially important if you are talking about
a private matter and don’t want to be overheard.
Use culturally sensitive language
◦ You could unintentionally offend someone who has
an accent by asking them about it.
Can be verbal or non-verbal
The listener shows/tells this to the person
talking to them.
◦ This lets the speaker know if the listener understands
what was said and heard.
From this, if the listener didn’t understand everything
correctly, the speaker can try to explain what they are saying
in a better, more understandable way.
When giving feedback, try to make it positive
instead of saying something like:
◦ “Your paper was horrible.”
Instead you could say: “Your paper was good, but you might
want to work on this, this, and this.”
This way you aren’t hurting their feelings, but are still helping
them to correct it.
Words that have different meanings to
Phat and Fat- sound the same, but Phat is another
word for awesome, while Fat means overweight.
Check out this link to find some better definitions of the
word Phat (to see how it doesn’t relate at all to Fat).
Cool- has two different definitions
It can mean cold: “This drink is nice and cool.”
It can also mean awesome: “Man, that guy is so cool.”
Listening is more than just hearing what
someone is saying. You must focus on the
speaker and give them full attention, so that
you have an easier time remembering it.
Listening makes everyone in the workplace
understand what exactly is going on and how
they are supposed to get things done.
It allows the leader or manager to get points
across a lot easier when everyone is just
listening to them and not just “hearing” them.
The Hospitality Industry is worldwide, therefore
communication between different cultures is always
present, whether between staff and guests, or staff and
staff. Communication embodies many techniques, and
each should be used differently depending on the
Understanding the appropriate conversational distance is
important to know when doing business internationally, but can
also prevent awkwardness and discomfort with international
In North America and Northern Europe, businesspeople usually stand
close enough to shake hands, about 2.5-3 feet apart. In parts of
Southern Europe and most of Latin America, the distance tends to be
closer. In the Middle East, it is closer yet, sometimes under one foot.
In other parts of the world, conversational space is larger than is
customary in the U.S. Some Asians prefer a larger distance than North
Americans, because people who bow need at least three feet between
them to avoid knocking heads. In Asia, North Americans can be
perceived as getting too close.
North Americans, Northern Europeans, Asians favor little, if
any, physical contact. Mediterranean, Arab, and Latin cultures prefer
much contact between people.
In most of Southern Europe, Latin America, Africa, and the Middle East, time
is more laidback idea. In these countries, it's fine if a person is on time, but
it's also fine if a person is late. To them, life is complex, and many things
In contrast, time is money in the United States and most of Northern Europe.
When someone is late, they have wasted your time, which is a serious insult.
In Germany, the Netherlands, Finland, and Japan, you'd better be there
early, because every minute counts.
Norway, Austria, Belgium, France, and much of Asia consider you to be on
time if you arrive less than a half-hour late.
Spain, Portugal, Italy, and most of Latin America practice moderate
punctuality and allow someone to arrive an hour late.
In the Middle East and Africa, punctuality is not traditionally valued. In such
places, people could show up hours late (or not at all) without conveying an
Keep In Mind!!
Calendars around the world are not the same
Weeks and months do not always mean the same as they do in Western
Western culture writes the date different than other cultures.
Holy Days and Holidays are different in many parts of the world!
As seen above, giving flowers to a woman can mean something entirely different than
you meant it to, and finishing your plate, as is custom in the United States, is not
customary in Asian culture.
In the United States, direct eye contact is considered a sign of honesty and reliability. Shifting
one’s gaze away, or to the floor indicates a lack of attention, or worse, deceit. However, in
Latin America, intense eye contact between men can be considered challenging and
aggressive. Depending upon the situation, subordinates may not always look superiors in the
eye for a protracted period of time. If a Hispanic looks away when being questioned, he or she
is probably being respectful, rather than hiding something.
Extended eye contact between the sexes—in a purely business setting—is common in the United
States, but can be interpreted as an overture for more intimate communications in many Latin
and Mediterranean countries.
“You’re never fully dressed without a smile.” While a smile is generally part of an
introduction, smiles aren’t always the universal signal for friendship. Although smiles invite
communication in much of the Western Hemisphere, in the Far East, a smile can be used to
cover up embarrassment, dismay or fury. If you’re negotiating with Japanese, Chinese or
Indonesian prospects, a smile is used to communicate far more than pleasure. It’s a form of
polite behavior, which masks anything from sincere enjoyment to menace. In the French
frame of reference, a person who grins too much can be regarded as simple. And in
Germany, smiles are often reserved for family, friends and social situations, but not displayed
freely in business settings.
Shaking Hands —
In the United States, a firm grip has long been an indicator of strength of character, but
styles of handclasps can definitely vary around the world. In Asia, a weak, extended grip is
normal and doesn’t say anything about negotiating strength.
If you’re in a Muslim or Orthodox Jewish environment, you must be highly sensitive to
touching the opposite gender. Devout orthodox Muslims and Jews must not touch women, so
follow your hosts’ lead.
The tradition of bowing is so complex that Asians attend classes in the proper protocol
of the bow. It’s unlikely that any international visitor would be able to appropriately execute a
formal bow (to the right depth, with the correct duration, etc). However, a polite attempt to
bow in greeting will be appreciated by your Asian hosts. If you’re the subordinate in the
relationship, bow lower. Be sure to learn an appropriate verbal greeting to express with the
Most initial business meetings around the world don’t involve a kiss. But after
establishing a relationship with clients in the Middle East, Latin America, many parts of the
Mediterranean and parts of Africa, there may be times when your clients/friends initiate a brief
kiss on either cheek, accompanied by a handshake, hug or pat on the back.
If you’re in Brazil, this custom may occur between the sexes after only one or two meetings. In
the Middle East, the same custom is likely to happen between males, followed by an extended
period in close proximity. Whatever you do, never back away from a kiss. You don’t want to
undermine your new business relationship by being coy about your personal space.
China : Even casual wear is somewhat conservative. Revealing clothing in a business environment may be offensive.
England : Men’s shirts should not have pockets, but if they do, they should remain empty. Do not cram them full of
pens, calculators, etc.
Argentina : Your entire wardrobe will be scrutinized. Argentines are very aware of European styles. Provocative
clothing is rarely seen at work. Argentines tend toward the modest and subdued. Also, no matter how attractive
native costumes appear to you, do not adopt them. Indian clothing is for Indians. The same goes for gaucho outfits.
Egypt, Saudi Arabia and much of the Middle East : Despite the heat, most of the body must remain covered in
Muslim countries. While western businessmen and women do not have to adopt Islamic wardrobes, they are
expected to wear very modest clothing in public. Necklines should be high and the sleeves should come at least to
the elbows. For women, hemlines should be well below the knee, if not ankle-length. The overall effect should be
one of baggy concealment; a full-length outfit that is tight or revealing is not acceptable.
Japan : Never appear casual at work. Slip-on shoes are best, since you remove them frequently. Tall women should
not wear extremely high heels to avoid towering over their Japanese counterparts.
India : Remember that Hindus revere cows and may consider leather products offensive (especially in temples).
France : The inventors of haute couture put a premium on style. Even low-paid, entry-level executives buy the best
clothes they can afford. Frenchwomen are famous for their hard-edged, feminine chic.
In some countries, men remove their jackets at work (i.e., the Netherlands) while in other countries (Germany and
France), executives usually do not loosen their ties or take off their jackets while at the office. Never be the first to
shed your jacket
Colors are important
Colors can have significant meaning around the world. Some hues and patterns can set the wrong tone in certain
Red can be a color of mourning in parts of Africa, and a red suit on a woman can imply she’s a tart.
Yellow is associated with illness in South Korea, and certain shades of yellow are reserved for the royal families to
wear in Malaysia.
Military clothing can be illegal to wear or bring into the country in some places (Guatemala).
Particular stripes on ties can be associated with schools in the United Kingdom.
White is a color of mourning in much of Asia.
Green is associated with Islam in the Middle East.
Green hats (like the famous “John Deere” signature caps) carry the connotation that you are a cuckold (your wife is
cheating on you) in certain parts of Asia. Don’t hand them out at exhibitions or conferences!
In general, bright, vivid colors are not a good choice for business apparel in any country. Your garments form a
large part of people’s first impressions of you, so investing in suitable attire will allow your clients to spend more
time listening to what you say, rather than looking at what you wear.
-conversations, meetings, lectures
memos, handbooks, newsletters, emails, sign
-with the use of technology
Having vocal variety makes it easier for listeners to
pay attention and to distinguish main points from
supporting details in a message.
Inflection: The change in pitch when someone speaks.
Monotone- the absence of inflection
*video clip (begin at 0:45 sec)
Rate: Speaking too slowly or quickly can make
communication difficult. Rate helps express
Volume: The volume at which we speak helps to
emphasize a part of a message.
Pronunciation is often interpreted as
clues to a person’s educational
background or where a person originated
from. By modifying a dialect, one can
communicate more effectively to people.
Avoid using mispronounced words such as
“dese,” “dat,” “nothin.”
Fluency refers to a person’s ability to speak
articulately without excessive use of fillers such
as “um,” “ya know,” “ah,” “like,” and long pauses.
Although having a lack of
fluency makes someone seem
Fluent speakers are impressive.
They show confidence & the (End at 0:48 sec)
ability to focus on their ideas
and express them powerfully.
... it should not be seen as a sign
of poor intelligence.
Silence can be an effective communication tool.
What can silence be use for?
To enhance messages
To draw listener’s attention to what you will say next
To express astonishment or disgust when giving
To replace the “um”s and “ah”s in your train of
An organization can be perceived as a
complex message- processing system in
which messages are constantly flowing in all
Communication can be transmitted directly
from sender to intended receiver or
Sometimes it flows through formal channels.
Other times it is transmitted informally.
The formal communication network is a firmly structured chain of command, with messages
traveling in three directions: upward, downward, and horizontally.
Messages can travel up the business hierarchy from an hourly employee to the vice
president, this is called Upward communication.
3 ways to improve upward communication:
1. Encourage your staff to communicate with you.
3. Avoid communication barriers.
Downward Communication-Messages travel down the hierarchy for example when the vice
president sends a message to all hourly workers to attend a meeting regarding marketing.
4 ways to improve downward communication:
1. Establish trust.
a. Allow your employees to get to know you.
b. Be honest.
c. Explain why.
2. Use redundancy and multiple channels.
3. Make the message important to the employee.
4. Don't overload.
Horizontal communication occurs when one member of the organization communicates with a
coworker of equal position.
2 ways to help develop horizontal communication
1. Reward good horizontal communication.
2. Make sure interdepartmental competition is constructive.
The term grapevine is derived from the days of the Civil War. In those
days the army communicated using telegraph wires strung from tree to
tree in such a way that they resembled a grapevine. Messages that
traveled through these wires often got mixed up. Hence, the term
grapevine came to be associated with garbled messages.
Nowadays, the grapevine in modern organizations can be surprisingly
accurate. This is not to say that it is entirely dependable as a source of
information, but it is more dependable than most people assume.
When the topics discussed are non- controversial, the grapevine is
correct 75 percent of the time.
The grapevine is also the fastest disseminator of information in the
The grapevine is generally a positive aspect of an organization; it is the
rumors that are negative.
The manager, instead of trying to eliminate the grapevine, should try to
◦ The best way to reduce rumor is to increase downward communication.
eHow Careers and Work Editor. quot;How to
Reduce Communication Errors.”
Berger, F., & Brownell, J. (2009).
Organizational Behavior for The Hospitality
Industry. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey:
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