Cross Cultural Communication Barriers to Overcome

  • Observe but don’t interpret according to your own culture – don’t form stereotypes
  • Don’t assume you understand non-verbal signals
  • Don’t take behaviour personally even if it’s insulting in your culture
  • Develop an awareness of your own non-verbal signals and how they might be offensive
  • Understand your own stereotypes and learn about other cultures with openness.
  • Don’t evaluate behaviour as good or bad
  • Accept the fact that cross cultural communication causes stress

Intercultural communication is an aspect of all communicative interactions, and attention to your perspective is key to your effectiveness. Ethnocentrism is a major obstacle to intercultural communication. Ethnocentric tendencies, stereotyping, and assumptions of similarity can make it difficult to learn about cultural differences  

Cultural Shock Staging 

  • Honeymoon Phase
  • Irritation and Hostility
  • Gradual Adjustment
  • Adaptation or Biculturalism 

Culture Matters

As a professional in the modern business community, you need to be aware that the very concept of community is undergoing a fundamental transformation. Throughout the world’s history—until recently—a community was defined by its geographic boundaries. Nowadays business focuses less on the borders that separate people and more on what that brings them together – communication

Business values clear, concise interaction that promotes efficiency and effectiveness. You may perceive your role as a business communicator within a specific city, business, or organisation, but you need to be aware that Your role crosses cultures, languages, value and legal systems, and borders.Understanding Key Terms

  • Cultures and Subcultures
  • High context vs. Low contact cultures
  • Hofstede model and its drawbacks
  • Surface culture vs. deep culture
  • Stereotypes
  • Cultural shock staging
  • Importance to remember individual needs
  • Overtness of messages
  • Use of non-verbal communication
  • Expression of reaction
  • Cohesion and separation of groups
  • People bonds
  • Level of commitment to relationships
  • Flexibility of time
  • Culture and community definition transformation
  • Ethnocentrism
  • Assumptions of similarity
  • Diversity
  • Individualism vs. collectivism
  • Power distance
  • Uncertainty avoidance
  • Masculinity vs. femininity
  • Long term orientation
  • Indulgence vs. restraint 
  • Observation vs. interpretation 
  • Importance of travel and interaction practiceAssignment

Dear Teams, 

We are back to our business thoughts and ideas. At this time, you are required to demonstrate that you understand the cultural peculiarities of the country which you target as a business. 

Each team is to present its opinion about the target country in 1 slide that needs to be prepared according to Hofstede’s model and which needs to indicate where the target country is leaning more – for example is it more Masculine or Feminine, Indulgent or Restraint, etc – all the components as per Hofstede. 

The team opinion should be presented on 1 slide in a table or graph Each team is to have arguments why they think the country is in the respective classification – for example, what makes them think it is more Masculine, etc.

Each team can have different opinions – and it is perfectly fine! The key is to present your thoughts why you are considering your target country into respective category.