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Effective Communication in a Cross-Cultural World

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Krissia Cantillano Prado

on 22 November 2012

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Transcript of Effective Communication in a Cross-Cultural World

Effective Communication in a Cross-Cultural World "We didn't all come over on the same ship,
but we're all in the same boat."

Bernard Baruch,
American financier and statesman Objectives: 2 “No culture can live if it attempts to be exclusive.”
Mahatma Gandhi 3 TAC Concept: General Concept: 4
Let’s explore
the meaning of “culture”. 4 Elements of a culture CULTURE 6 To solve an issue they have through
TAC engineers´ help. Why do customers from different cultural backgrounds call TAC? What is Cross-Cultural Communication? 7 Facts about different cultures 8 Getting into a new culture 9 The ability to communicate
cross-culturally is crucial to succeed. Reasons to communicate effectively
across cultural boundaries 10 11 11 More business is being done
globally. Most businesses are becoming
more diverse. Guidelines to communicate effectively
in a diverse world 11 While humans do share a common nature, culture plays a key role
in shaping how individuals see themselves, think and behave,
and interact with the world. Acknowledge that people are different. 12 13 13 14 15 understand At the end of this module,
you will be able to .... Understand the impact
of cross-cultural communication
in the TAC business. Be familiar with
some cross-cultural
communication skills. Have some examples of cross-cultural
situations and suggestions
to deal with them. Networking products and services are
all over the world. People from different cultures
buy and use networking products and services. Since TAC is a part of a globalized market,
a successful interaction with
our customers is a must. So, we must know that culture is a fundamental factor
in human nature, influencing and
conditioning the way people perceive reality. What do they expect from
TAC engineers? To have the right conversation
and behavior consistent with their cultural
norms and expectations. What should TAC engineers do? To learn to react in a way that is in line with
the customer´s way of doing things. To serve customers by understanding their sensitivities. 6 To develop cross-cultural communication skills. How would you react to
the following situation? A customer from USA demands an immediate solution
to his case. He wants to have an overnight answer.

On the contrary, a customer from Egypt is more likely
to wait for a solution no matter the time.

Why? Both, the American and the Egyptian customers,
have a different concept of time.




Seek out new techniques and styles for communicating
in ways that suit the culture
of the people you are dealing with. Stretch outside your comfort zone. Be flexible and prepared to change.





Take turns. How to exercise your flexibility (cc) image by rocketboom on Flickr (cc) image by quoimedia on Flickr
Being patient and courteous shows that
you care about your customer
and what is happening to him. Cross-cultural communication is enhanced
through taking turns to talk,
making a point and then listening to the response. Summarize what has been said in order to verify it.
This is a very effective way of ensuring
accurate cross-cultural communication has taken place. Check meanings.


Slow down, speak clearly and ensure
your pronunciation is intelligible. 16 Try not to ask double questions such as,
"Do you want to carry on or shall we stop here?" In a cross cultural situation only the first or second question
may have been comprehended. Let your listener answer
one question at a time. Slow down when you speak. Listen to him carefully. Let the customer speak about his issue.


Many cultures have certain etiquette when communicating.
It is always a good idea to undertake some
cross-cultural awareness training or at least
do some research on the target culture. Maintain etiquette. Be supportive. Effective cross cultural communication is in essence about being comfortable.
Giving encouragement to customers gives them
confidence, support and a trust in you. You can be misinterpreted or misunderstood. Don’t attempt to imitate or adopt
your customers’ culture. 18




Talking about some topics is very delicate.
If the customer comes out with one of these topics,
be polite and provide an answer, but don´t go deep on discussing them. 19 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. Avoid talking about religion, politics,
financial status, personality, occupation.




In English, we answer 'yes' if the answer is affirmative and 'no' if it is negative.
In other cultures, a 'yes' or 'no' may only be indicating
whether the questioner is right or wrong.
For example, the response to "Are you not coming?"
may be 'yes', meaning 'Yes, I am not coming.' Avoid slang. Even the most well educated foreigner will not have
a complete knowledge of slang, idioms and sayings.
The danger is that the words will be understood
but the meaning missed. Avoid negative questions. Recognize the stumbling blocks that prevent people from communicating successfully. A belief in the superiority of your own ethnic or cultural group
A dislike of all other groups A mental construct about a group that is strongly positive or negative Stereotyping: Ethnocentrism: Language: False Assumptions: Incorrect or wrong presuppositions
An invalid idea taken for granted Possible barrier if not used properly: speak slowly, enunciate clearly, ask questions to clarify, use plain language and short sentences, avoid slang, jargon, or colloquialism Be on time to provide your customer the best service. Deadlines are important in every culture. Be prepared to meet them or lose business.
Treat everyone with respect.
Provide different solutions so people can feel you recognize their needs.
Be prepared to provide specific information.
Treat everyone equally.
Be willing to do business first; build the relationship second.
Have an open mind when interacting with customers from different cultures to perceive whether a cultural difference lies at the heart of a misunderstanding. Golden Rules 23


Be direct and to the point.
Be logical and sequenced.
Spell out information.
Convey meaning by using specific words.
Use direct, explicit, verbal or written communication.
Use a standard writing style when communication via email.
Use an appropriate tone of voice when talking to your customers. Some advice to communicate more effectively Bernard Baruch,
American financier and statesman "We didn't all come over the same ship,
but we're all in the same boat." Facts
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