Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM

Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM

(After Michelle LeBaron’s Cross-Cultural Communication.Beyond Intractability)

“We didn't all come over on the same ship, but we're all in the same boat."
– Bernard Baruch, American financier and statesman.

It's no secret that today's workplace is rapidly becoming vast, as the business environment expands to Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM include various geographic locations and span numerous cultures. What can be difficult, however, is understanding how to communicate effectively with individuals who speak another language, or who rely on different means to reach a common goal.

1.The Internet and modern technology have opened up new marketplaces that allow us Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM to promote our businesses to new geographic locations and cultures. And given that it can now be as easy to work with people remotely as it is to work face-to-face, cross-cultural communication is increasingly the new norm.

After all, if communication is electronic, it's as Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM easy to work with someone in another country as it is to work with someone in the next town.

And why limit yourself to working with people within convenient driving distance when, just as conveniently, you can work with the most knowledgeable people in the entire world?

For Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM those of us who are native English-speakers, it is fortunate that English seems to be the language that people use if they want to reach the widest possible audience. However, even for native English speakers, cross-cultural communication can be an issue: Just witness the mutual incomprehension that Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM can sometimes arise between people from different English-speaking countries.

In this new world, good cross-cultural communication is a must.

2.Given different cultural contexts, this brings new communication challenges to the workplace. Even when employees located in different locations or offices speak the same language (for instance, correspondences Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM between English-speakers in the U.S. and English-speakers in the UK), there are some cultural differences that should be considered in an effort to optimize communications between the two parties.

In such cases, an effective communication strategy begins with the understanding that the sender of the message and the receiver Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM of the message are from different cultures and backgrounds. Of course, this introduces a certain amount of uncertainty, making communications even more complex.

Without getting into cultures and sub-cultures, it is perhaps most important for people to realize that a basic understanding of cultural diversity is the Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM key to effective cross-cultural communications. Without necessarily studying individual cultures and languages in detail, we must all learn how to better communicate with individuals and groups whose first language, or language of choice, does not match our own.

3.However, some learning the basics about culture and Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM at least something about the language of communication in different countries is important. This is necessary even for the basic level of understanding required to engage in appropriate greetings and physical contact, which can be a tricky area inter-culturally. For instance, kissing a business associate is not considered an appropriate Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM business practice in the U.S., but in Paris, one peck on each cheek is an acceptable greeting. And, the firm handshake that is widely accepted in the U.S. is not recognized in all other cultures.

While many companies now offer training in the different cultures where the Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM company conducts business, it is important that employees communicating across cultures practice patience and work to increase their knowledge and understanding of these cultures. This requires the ability to see that a person's own behaviors and reactions are oftentimes culturally driven and that while they may Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM not match our own, they are culturally appropriate.

If a leader or manager of a team that is working across cultures or incorporates individuals who speak different languages, practice different religions, or are members of a society that requires a new understanding, he or she needs to work to Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM convey this.

Consider any special needs the individuals on your team may have. For instance, they may observe different holidays, or even have different hours of operation. Be mindful of time zone differences and work to keep everyone involved aware and respectful of such differences.

Generally speaking, patience, courtesy and Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM a bit of curiosity go a long way. And, if you are unsure of any differences that may exist, simply ask team members. Again, this may best be done in a one-on-one setting so that no one feels "put on the spot" or self-conscious, perhaps even embarrassed, about Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM discussing their own needs or differences or needs.

4.Next, cultivate and demand understanding and tolerance. In doing this, a little education will usually do the trick. Explain to team members that the part of the team that works out of the Australia office, for example, will be working in a Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM different time zone, so electronic communications and/or return phone calls will experience a delay. And, members of the India office will also observe different holidays (such as Mahatma Gandhi's Birthday, observed on October 2).

Most people will appreciate the information and will work hard to understand different Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM needs and different means used to reach common goals. However, when this is not the case, lead by example and make it clear that you expect to be followed down a path of open-mindedness, acceptance and tolerance.

Tip: Tolerance is essential. However, you need to maintain standards of acceptable Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM behavior. The following "rules of thumb" seem universal:

· Team members should contribute to and not hinder the team's mission or harm the delivery to the team's customer.

· Team members should not damage the cohesion of the team or prevent it from becoming more effective.

· Team members Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM should not unnecessarily harm the interests of other team members.

Other factors (such as national law) are obviously important.

When dealing with people in a different culture, courtesy and goodwill can also go a long way in ensuring successful communication. Again, this should be insisted on.

If your Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM starting point in solving problems is to assume why communication has failed, you'll find that many problems are quickly resolved.

5.When you communicate, keep in mind that even though English is considered the international language of business, it is a mistake to assume that every businessperson speaks Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM good English. In fact, only about half of the 800 million people who speak English learned it as a first language. And, those who speak it as a second language are often more limited than native speakers.

When you communicate cross-culturally, make particular efforts to keeping your communication clear, simple and unambiguous Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM.

And (sadly) avoid humor until you know that the person you're communicating with "gets it" and isn't offended by it. Humor is notoriously culture-specific: Many things that pass for humor in one culture can be seen as grossly offensive in another.

6.Finally, if language Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM barriers present themselves, it may be in every one's best interest to employ a reliable, experienced translator. Because English is not the first language of many international business people, their use of the language may be peppered with culture-specific or non-standard English phrases, which can Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM hamper the communication process. Again, having a translator on хэнд (even if just during the initial phases of work) may be the best solution here. The translator can help everyone involved to recognize cultural and communication differences and ensure that all parties, regardless of geographic location and background, come together and stay Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM together through successful project completion.

UNDERSTANDING THE TEXT ORGANIZATION: SUBHEADINGS, KEY WORDS, REFERENTS, LINKING WORDS

Instruction:While in class, you do not have time to read every word carefully. Remember that your starting task is not to understand all of the text.It is often only necessary to Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM read a small part of the text carefullyto find some specific information.

In most well-written English texts, every paragraph deals with a specific aspect of a topic. The first sentence of a paragraph usually tells the reader what the rest of the paragraph is about so when you are trying Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM to identify the main idea of a paragraph, you should read the first sentence carefully. Then, keeping the idea of the first sentence in mind, you should quickly check the rest of the paragraph, picking up only someof the words.

This is skim reading or skimming.Using Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM this technique you will have a general idea of what the writer is saying about the topic. Surveying the text tells you about the topic or subject of the text. It may also tell you something about how the text is organized (subheadings are especially useful). Surveying may also tell you Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM something about the writer's purpose—whether the intention is to give instructions, to compare, to give information, and so on.

Step 1 – Survey the text

Surveying has already been discussed several times in this book. Can you remember what to look at when you survey? A list of headings can give Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM you some useful information to help you quickly understand what each part of the text will be about.

Step 2Skim read each paragraph

Every paragraph deals with a specific aspect of a topic. The first sentence of a paragraph will most probably tell the you what the Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM rest of the paragraph is about so when you are trying to identify the main idea of a paragraph, you should read the first sentence carefully. Using this technique you will have a general idea of what the writer is saying in each paragraph.

Step 3 – Determine which heading is the best Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM match for each of the paragraphs marked by the numbers.

(Note that you are trying to identify topics only.) This will help you know where (in which paragraph or section) to scan later for the answer to a question. If the text has a lot of subheadings,it Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM is much easier to identify text organization.

And Get Help if You Need It
Collaborative Efforts – a Must!
Demand Tolerance
Developing Awareness of Individual Cultures
Keep it Simple
Understanding Cultural Diversity

Of course, when you skim-read a text you cannot get as much information from the text as when Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM you read it all carefully, but by skimming you can quicklyget enough information to help you get context clues. Remember that efficient use of time is one of the most important skills.

You will have to adjust the speed of your skimming according to how easy the text Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM is for you to understand. If a paragraph does not have a first sentence which gives the topic of the paragraph clearly, you have to skim more carefully. But don't forget that you should not read every word – reading every word will waste too much time.

To remind: the best Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM way to find details quickly is to use scanning. Scanning is searching for key words or synonyms by looking quickly through the text. For example, you scan when you look for a word in a dictionary. You do not read every word as you search for the Text 1-7. CROSS-CULTURAL COMMUNICATION – THE NEW NORM word(s) you want.


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