International Communication for Managers


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Bridging Barriers - Intercultual Communication for International Managers.

This is of help to international managers to adopt and effectively accommodate differences in communication among societies.

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  • heterogeneous
  • Low-context society
  • International Communication for Managers

    1. 1. INTERNATIONAL COMMUNICATION Bridging Barriers – Intercultural Communication
    2. 2. <ul><li>Communication is vast including written and electronic media, interactive systems, mass media, the conversational dimention of oral communication . </li></ul><ul><li>Intercultural/Cross cultural Communication occurs between individuals, groups, orgs.,or societies with different cultural antecedents. </li></ul>
    3. 3. <ul><li>While discussing intercultural communication we specifically mean oral and non verbal communication. </li></ul><ul><li>Importance to International Managers: </li></ul><ul><li>managers of home country multinationals are positioned in a foriegn country. </li></ul><ul><li>Manager assigned by a foriegn firm in home country. </li></ul><ul><li>Manager employed by a foreign company and assigned to a third foriegn country. </li></ul>
    4. 4. <ul><li>In most instances people in the USA do not prefer to work for a foreign company as they are said to bring some an unusual characteristics with them. </li></ul><ul><li>High Context Vs Low Context Societies: </li></ul><ul><li>countries of heterogeneous societies i.e canada, Australia, USA, and Britain are said to be low context societies . </li></ul>
    5. 5. <ul><li>While countries of homogeneous cultures are called high context societies. </li></ul><ul><li>Low context High context </li></ul>Heterogeneous High social mobility High job mobility Short-term relationships Insider/outsider not Closely distinguished Homogeneous Little social mobility Little job mobility Long-term relationships Insider/outsider clearly Distinguished . Lack of widely shared meanings requires explicit Clarity. Widely shared meanings Allow implicit Communication.
    6. 6. <ul><li>What Others Think About Americans at Home and Abroad </li></ul><ul><li>Well dressed and self confidant. </li></ul><ul><li>Casual in their relationships. </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis on lenghty contracts. </li></ul><ul><li>Dislplay sense of superiority . </li></ul><ul><li>Confusing characteristics i.e mowing lawns. Cleaning, cooking and home repairs. </li></ul><ul><li>Familiar with every one. </li></ul>
    7. 7. <ul><li>But and the end are warmly received abroad…. </li></ul><ul><li>However, although communication is culture sensitive it is not defined by national boundries, because same characteristics can be found in different societies . </li></ul>
    8. 8. <ul><li>Communication Behavior in Economic Systems : </li></ul><ul><li>Capitalist economies charecterised by open, free flowing patterns of communication affect both public and private communication. </li></ul><ul><li>Communist have notoriously restricted media, every side of it . </li></ul><ul><li>However communication behaviour is most noticiable among countries with significantly differrent economic profiles. </li></ul>
    9. 9. <ul><li>Communication behavior in political systems: </li></ul><ul><li>Here the greater difference exists between democratic systems and autocratic systems. </li></ul><ul><li>For example, china’s communist party in control and some of their leaders with super natural powers. </li></ul>
    10. 10. <ul><li>France is a democratic society with socialist characteristics. </li></ul><ul><li>All these political systems will influence public and private relationships in different ways on a daily basis. </li></ul><ul><li>From an intercultural view point, these differences sensitive adoptations to language, semantics, use of written documents, contracts and conversational context. </li></ul>
    11. 11. <ul><li>Communication in Social Systems: </li></ul><ul><li>Social institutions including government, educational, religious and family organisations direct the pattern of communication as they shape society’s physical and economic environment. </li></ul>
    12. 12. <ul><li>Communication in Educational Systems : </li></ul><ul><li>Language, traditions, customs and behavioural norms are designed through nations educational systems. This influences the pattern of communication. </li></ul><ul><li>Educational priorities. </li></ul>
    13. 13. <ul><li>Communication in Family Systems:- </li></ul><ul><li>the definition of a family unit varies widely among cultures. </li></ul><ul><li>Family systems therefore encourage specific communication patterns with in a culture. Those patterns at the same time limit communication with outsiders. </li></ul><ul><li>In the following figure patterns of family relations. </li></ul>
    14. 14. <ul><li>Loosely Tied Family </li></ul>In-laws. <ul><li>siblings. </li></ul><ul><li>Siblings & </li></ul><ul><li>their families </li></ul>Auts and Uncles. <ul><li>Grand </li></ul><ul><li>Parents </li></ul>Parental code.
    15. 15. <ul><li>Closely Tied family </li></ul>Grandparents Aunts/Uncles Parental Code. Siblings Siblings and Their families in-laws Siblings and Their families Grandparents Siblings Parental Code. Grandparents Siblings Aunts/Uncles Parental Code. Grandparents Siblings Siblings and Their families Aunts/Uncles Parental Code. Grandparents Siblings Siblings and Their families Siblings and Their families Aunts/Uncles Parental Code. Grandparents Siblings in-laws Siblings and Their families Siblings and Their families Aunts/Uncles Parental Code. Grandparents Siblings
    16. 16. <ul><li>Tribal community : </li></ul>Elders. Grand parents In-laws Parental core Siblings and Their families Village families Nonblood Members Aunts/uncles
    17. 17. <ul><li>Implications for effective communication </li></ul><ul><li>Patterns of communication are seldom a clear cause and effect relationship . </li></ul><ul><li>foreign managers must therefore be alert to how their knowledge, presence and technologies influence social change. </li></ul><ul><li>with that said, researchers have several suggestions to help international managers become more effective in their interpersonal communication roles. </li></ul>
    18. 18. <ul><li>Respect differences. </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid quick judgments. </li></ul><ul><li>Listen for implicit meanings. </li></ul><ul><li>in the following we will illustrate comparisons of high and low-context societies and their patterns of explicit or implicit communication:- </li></ul>
    19. 19. <ul><li>High-context </li></ul><ul><li>society </li></ul>Swiss German scandanavians North americans French Latins Arabs Japanese Low-context society High-context society Explicit communication. Implicit communication
    20. 20. <ul><li>In this section we will explore the miscommunication problems with emphasis on oral and nonverbal communication. </li></ul>
    21. 21. <ul><li>Contrasts In Oral & Non-verbal Communication:- </li></ul><ul><li>as communication is the process of sharing meanings, it involves : </li></ul><ul><li>-- oral communication = speaking with others and expressing ideas, thoughts etc, which can be listened and interpreted . </li></ul><ul><li>-- Nonverbal communication = physical gestures, behavior, touch, smell, eye contact and silence. </li></ul>
    22. 22. <ul><li>Communication Process: </li></ul>Sender Encoding Channel (medium) Decoding Receiver Feedback (clarity, confirm) Basic Model of the Communication Process
    23. 23. <ul><li>Sender is responsible for encoding the message </li></ul><ul><li>using which partially depends on the channel of communication. </li></ul><ul><li>Choice of communication channel can be a problem in foreign environment. i.e, though the japanese are leaders in technology, their managers seldom use e-mail. They prepare face-to-face meetings. </li></ul><ul><li>After channel is selected and message encoded, it is not complete yet. </li></ul>
    24. 24. <ul><li>A capable reciever is required. One who is able to decode and interpret the message correctly. </li></ul><ul><li>Once feedback is given that the intended meaning was received , then only the communication has taken place. </li></ul><ul><li>From an international management perspective, encoding, decoding and an effective medium is pivotal . </li></ul>
    25. 25. <ul><li>Oral communication : </li></ul><ul><li>among the most common problems for managers on foreign assignments are misunderstandings that occur through translation or interpretation errors .lack of foreign language skills. </li></ul><ul><li>Paralaguage: </li></ul><ul><li>more difficult to master than formal rules of a language is paralanguage. Which is the pattern of conversational dialogue. Paralanguage is the rate of speech, the volume and intonation used in conversations, and the intention with which they are conveyed. </li></ul>
    26. 26. <ul><li>Metacommunication: </li></ul><ul><li>laguage nuances are difficult to interpret even when someone is fluent in a foreign language, but meta communication is more troublesome. </li></ul><ul><li>Metacommunication is the implied meaning of a message, whether conveyed intentionally or subconsciously during a conversation. </li></ul>
    27. 27. <ul><li>Conversational Behaviour </li></ul><ul><li>F actors like society’s orientation to time, physical proximity of speakers, and thinking process which are conversational behavior directly affect oral communication. But also are dimentions of nonverbal communication. </li></ul><ul><li>Among these factors affecting conversational behavior are:- </li></ul><ul><li>Chronemics: </li></ul><ul><li>attitudes towards time. Explained in the following figure. </li></ul>
    28. 28. <ul><li>Researchers classify societies either as monochronics or polychronics </li></ul><ul><li>Monochronic Polychronic </li></ul><ul><li>Social Orientation Social Orientation </li></ul>Time is crucial. Punctuality . Get to the point. Time is an asset. Time is not ours to have their own time. Talk business; also talk Football, fine food, Freindship.
    29. 29. <ul><li>Proxemics: </li></ul><ul><li>The physical proximity (distance apart) of people engaged in conversation is known as proximecs. </li></ul><ul><li>Arabs, Greeks, and turks tend to stand very close during a conversation. While this seems almost oppressive to north americans. Who prefer to talk at a comfortable distance from one another. </li></ul>
    30. 30. <ul><li>Thought Process: </li></ul><ul><li>Conversation patterns are substantially different among societies with fundematally different ways of thinking. </li></ul><ul><li>Most people in Asian cultures resist making fast decisions. They ponder issues, negotiate at length, and in general work deliberately to find solutions to problems. While managers in western societies are percieved as jumping to conclusions. </li></ul>
    31. 31. <ul><li>Kinesics: </li></ul><ul><li>kenesics referes to any body movements that amplifies communication. It includes gestures, facial expressions, and mannerisms such as posture. </li></ul><ul><li>Physical contact: </li></ul><ul><li>shaking hands in business , hugs, shoulder pats all convey a variety of emotions among different societies. </li></ul>
    32. 32. Guidelines for Effective Intercultural Communication <ul><li>Effective communication begins by being able to accommodate to foreign values and customs without compromising one’s own values. </li></ul><ul><li>Going Beyond language training : learning a second or a third language can help individuals prepare for international careers, but often more can be gained by studying foreign literature for its philosophies and customs. </li></ul>
    33. 33. <ul><li>Language and expression: </li></ul><ul><li>Learning a language goes beyond a simple ability to recall usable phrases and expressions. It also requires an awareness of sociocultural nuances. </li></ul><ul><li>Perceptual differences: </li></ul><ul><li>People from different societies may be schooled in common business practices, but hold very different perceptions about how to do business. Unforjunately there is nothing much a person can do about perceptual differences. </li></ul><ul><li>Often students can gain valuable insights from discussing concepts with other foreign students. </li></ul>
    34. 34. <ul><li>Rules and Customs: </li></ul><ul><li>It is important to understand the dangers of violating religious, moral, and social codes in foreign societies. </li></ul><ul><li>It is also important to avoid generalisation of specific differences of host countries . For instance, the sub-saharan africa has more than 40 independent nations, 800 linguistic communities and cultural identities. </li></ul>
    35. 35. <ul><li>Encoding and Decoding: </li></ul><ul><li>Effective communication in any language, and between any parties anywhere, requires clear encoding by senders and accurate decoding by receivers. </li></ul><ul><li>Translation and Back-Translation: </li></ul><ul><li>Notices, letters, and fax messages that are intended for host country have to be first written in english and then translated into local language. i.e, chinese. The chinese version should then be back-translated into english by a third party. Then compare it with the original. </li></ul>
    36. 36. <ul><li>Example : </li></ul>a question asked in english on a survey questionnaire of chinese managers concerning their cultural values. The question was translated into simplified chinese characters and then back-translated by a third party into english. Question in english Do you value spirituality? Intended meaning: do you value religious practices? Translated into chinese Do you believe in ghosts or demons? Back-translated into english Do you know ghosts or demons?
    37. 37. <ul><li>Develop feedback system. </li></ul><ul><li>Enhance boundry-spanning activities: </li></ul><ul><li>…………………………………… </li></ul><ul><li>………………… . </li></ul><ul><li>…… . </li></ul><ul><li>.. </li></ul><ul><li>. </li></ul>