Multi-Cultural Communication

This program aims at developing awareness between people where a common cultural framework does not exist. In general, cross cultural training has two parallel strands – cross cultural awareness training and culture/country specific training.

Cross cultural awareness training deals with the manifestations of culture in the workplace. The main purpose is to evaluate and constructively tackle the challenges cross cultural differences can bring to the workplace.

Audience
This program is aimed at everyone that works in a multi-cultural environment.

Learning Objectives

Participants will be able to:

  • be aware of their own perceptions and how this may influence their understanding of others.
  • know what their own cultural style is.
  • Understand the patterns of cultural differences and how to use this in becoming aware of others.
  • know how to work towards harmony in the multi-cultural workplace.
  • know how to use the benefits of a multi-cultural workplace in a team.
  • understand the different attitudes towards different cultures.
  • be able to identify different values based on culture.

Topics

  • Perceptions
    People who share the same cultural behaviors view the world in a similar way and form an identity group based on these shared perceptions. So, people from one country or culture share common perceptions about competition, individualism, cooperation, planning and organization, and many others. In contrast, another culture may share perceptions that are different. For example they may emphasize support instead of competition; be group oriented rather than individually oriented.
  • Cultural Style Analysis
    People from different cultures have different styles. The ability to use skills that are tuned appropriately to the cultural values of those from another culture indicates understanding of cultural differences.
  • Six Fundamental Patterns of Cultural Differences
    A number of concepts has been identified that can be used to distinguish between cultures. These include the differences in the usage of kinesics (body movements), proxemics (space organization), oculesics (eye movement), haptics (touching behavior) as well as paralinguistic concepts, such as accents, intonation, speed of talking etc. Another frequently examined concept is “thought patterns”. These can be summarized as being logical or pre-logic, inductive or deductive, abstract or concrete and alphabetic or analphabetic.
  • Harmony and Teamwork in the Office
    Leadership and teamwork is the key to organizational effectiveness. A particular leadership style or teamwork process that is effective in one cultural context may not be effective in another.
  • The value of Cultural Diversity
    Understanding diversity begins by awareness and the understanding of our own behaviors and discovering how and perhaps why we behave the way we do. People around us do not respond to our intentions, they respond to our behavior. Regardless of our individual values, it is paramount that co-workers treat each other with respect and integrity.
  • Cultural Differences in the Workplace
    In this section we look at how the differences discovered so far could add value in the workplace.
  • Different Decision Making Styles
    The roles individuals play in decision-making vary widely from culture to culture. For example, in some countries decision-making are delegated. In others a strong value is placed on holding decision-making responsibilities to oneself. How people make decisions may be influenced by their frame of reference.
  • Different Attitudes towards Conflict
    Some cultures view conflict as a positive thing, while others view it as something to be avoided.

Duration
The workshop runs over two days (14 hours).

Learning Method
Learning is facilitated through a group game, self-awareness exercises and cultural style profiling.