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Cross culture awareness

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cross culture

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Cross culture awareness

  1. 1. Cross Cultural Awareness
  2. 2. What is Culture ? • Culture is the "lens" through which you view the world. • It is central to what you see, • How you make sense of what you see, • How you express yourself.  A shared system of meanings, beliefs, values, behaviours through which experience is interpreted and carried out
  3. 3. CROSS CULTURE Cross cultural communication focuses on how people from different cultures, background, beliefs and communities communicate across different cultures
  4. 4. WHAT IS SEEN IN A CULTURE ?
  5. 5. 5 Americans as other see them…  India: “Americans seem to be in a perpetual hurry. Just watch the way they walk down the street. They never allow themselves the leisure to enjoy life; there are too many things to do.”  Turkey: “Once we were out in a rural area in the middle of nowhere and saw an American come to a stop sign. Though he could see in both directions for miles and no traffic was coming, he still stopped!”  Colombia: “The tendency in the US to think that life is only work hits you in the face. Work seems to be the one type of motivation.”  Ethiopia: “The American is very explicit; he wants a “yes” or a “no”. If someone tries to speak figuratively, the American is confused.”  Iran: “The first time my American professor told me, “I don’t know the answer, I will have to look it up,” I was shocked. I asked myself, “Why is he teaching me? In my country a professor would give the wrong answer rather than admit ignorance.” Source: N. Adler., 1991
  6. 6. What is Cross Culture Awareness • Cultural Awareness is the foundation of communication and it involves the ability of standing back from ourselves and becoming aware of our cultural values, beliefs and perceptions.
  7. 7. Why Cross Culture Communication is important ? Globalization: Cross border movement of people, goods and data brings more and more cultures into contact with one another and increases the potential of cross culture communication. ◦ Business Opportunities ◦ Job Opportunities ◦ Improves the contribution of employees in a diverse workforce ◦ Sharing of views and ideas ◦ Talent improvisation ◦ An understanding of diverse market
  8. 8. Different areas of cross culture
  9. 9. Degree of cultural awareness • There are several levels of cultural awareness that reflect how people grow to perceive cultural differences. • My way is the only way - At the first level, people are aware of their way of doing things, and their way is the only way. At this stage, they ignore the impact of cultural differences. (Parochial stage) • I know their way, but my way is better - At the second level, people are aware of other ways of doing things, but still consider their way as the best one. In this stage, cultural differences are perceived as source of problems and people tend to ignore them or reduce their significance. (Ethnocentric stage)
  10. 10. • My Way and Their Way - At this level people are aware of their own way of doing things and others’ ways of doing things, and they chose the best way according to the situation. At this stage people realize that cultural differences can lead both to problems and benefits and are willing to use cultural diversity to create new solutions and alternatives. (Synergistic stage) • Our Way - This fourth and final stage brings people from different cultural background together for the creation of a culture of shared meanings. People dialogue repeatedly with others, create new meanings, new rules to meet the needs of a particular situation. (Participatory Third culture stage)
  11. 11. High Context culture • High Context • Less verbally explicit communication, less written/formal information • More internalized understandings of what is communicated • Multiple cross-cutting ties and intersections with others • Long term relationships • Strong boundaries- who is accepted as belonging vs who is considered an "outsider" • Knowledge is situational, relational. • Decisions and activities focus around personal face-to-face relationships, often around a central person who has authority.
  12. 12. Examples: Small religious congregations, a party with friends, family gatherings, expensive gourmet restaurants and neighbourhood restaurants with a regular clientele, undergraduate on-campus friendships, regular pick-up games, hosting a friend in your home overnight. • African • Brazilian • Chinese • French • Indian • Italian • Japanese • Portuguese • Russian • Southern United States • Spanish
  13. 13. • Examples: • large US airports, a chain supermarket, a cafeteria, a convenience store, sports where rules are clearly laid out. • Australian • Dutch • English Canadian • English • Finnish • German • Hebrews/Jews • New Zealand • Scandinavia • Switzerland • United States
  14. 14. Low Context Culture • Rule oriented, people play by external rules • More knowledge is codified, public, external, and accessible. • Sequencing, separation--of time, of space, of activities, of relationships • More interpersonal connections of shorter duration • Knowledge is more often transferable • Task-centered. Decisions and activities focus around what needs to be done, division of responsibilities.
  15. 15. 16 French: logical, cartesian, elitist, authoritarian, proud Germans: rigid, methodical, obsessed with order & privacy, unemotional, territorial Americans: superficial, ‘Frontier Spirit’, materialistic, over-optimistic Italians: loud, macho, impatient, over-emotional, talkative, unorganized British: imperialistic, ‘Island mentality’, principled, class-conscious, conservative Stereotypes… Chinese: quiet, hardworking, enigmatic, smiling, cruel
  16. 16. 17 Opening a meeting Germany Formal intro. Sit down. Begin. Finland Formal intro. Cup of coffee. Sit down. Begin. USA UK France Japan Spain/ Italy Number of minutes Informal intro. Cup of coffee. Jokes. Begin. Formal intro. Cup of tea. 10 min small talk. Casual beginning. Formal intro. 15 min small talk. Begin. Formal intro. Protocol seating. Green tea. 15/20 min small talk. Signal from senior member. Begin. 20/30 min small talk while others arrive. Begin when all are there. 5 10 15 20 25 Adapted from Richard D. Lewis
  17. 17. Barriers to cross cultural communication
  18. 18. Blocks to Cultural Communication 1. Ethnocentrism : Inability to accept another culture's world view; "my way is the best." 2. Discrimination : Differential treatment of an individual due to minority status; actual and perceived; e.g., "we just aren't equipped to .Serve people like that." 3. Stereotyping : Generalizing about a person while ignoring presence of individual difference; e.g., "she's like that because she's Asian – all Asians are nonverbal." 4.Cultural Blindness: Differences are ignored and one proceeds as though differences did not exist; e.g., "there's no need to worry about a person's culture 5.Cultural Imposition: Belief that everyone should conform to the majority; e.g., "we know what's best for you, if you don't like it you can go elsewhere." 6.Tone Difference : Formal tone change becomes embarrassing and off-putting in some cultures.
  19. 19. Pre-cautions in Cultural Communication 1. Slow Down 2. Separate Questions 3. Avoid Negative Questions 4. Take Turns 5. Write it down 6. Be Supportive 7. Maintain Etiquette
  20. 20. Be open to new ideas and appreciate cultural differences
  21. 21. Skills To Overcome Differences Respecting Differences and Working Together Building Trust Across Cultural Boundaries Understanding Body Language Connecting with people
  22. 22. “For a German and a Finn, the truth is the truth. In Japan and Britain it is all right if it doesn't rock the boat. In China there is no absolute truth. In Italy it is negotiable." Richard D. Lewis
  23. 23. Culture and communication Culture and communication are inseparable, because culture not only dictates who talks to whom, about what, and how the communication proceeds, it also helps to determine how people encode messages, the meanings they have for messages, and the conditions and circumstances under which various messages may or may not be sent, noticed, or interpreted.
  24. 24. Time to play cross cultural quiz…. 27
  25. 25. In Saudi Arabia, which is considered a popular gesture of friendship between men? 50/50 A. A high five B. Holding hands while walking C. A hand shake D. A hug and kiss on the cheek 28
  26. 26. In Saudi Arabia, which is considered a popular gesture of friendship between men? 50/50 A. A high five B. Holding hands while walking C. A hand shake D. A hug and kiss on the cheek 29
  27. 27. In Great Britain, tapping your nose indicates that something is: 50/50 A. Confidential B. Smelly C. Inappropriate D. Very important 30
  28. 28. In Great Britain, tapping your nose indicates that something is: 50/50 A. Confidential B. Smelly C. Inappropriate D. Very important 31
  29. 29. 32 Conclusion “Culture is more often a source of conflict than of synergy. Cultural differences are a nuisance at best and often a disaster. But if we really want to globalize, there is no way around them so we better take them for what they are.” Geert Hofstede

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