Tuesday, February 15, 2005
crespo blames cultural differences for failure at chelsea f.c.
Hernan Crespo, the Argentinian striker on loan at AC Milan from London club, Chelsea, has blamed cross cultural differences for his failure in the Premiership.“I just couldn’t assimilate," Crespo said. “The cultural differences between an Anglo-Saxon country and Italy were just too big. London is a great city but I missed human warmth and, of course, there was the language barrier. We shouldn’t use cultural difference as an excuse, but one shouldn’t underestimate it."
Crespo's admission draws attention to the number of areas cross cultural training is of growing importance. The Premiership now represents one of the most international and culturally diverse business/sports entities in the world.Read more: Crespo
New website for cross cultural greeting etiquette
Aquent today announced the launch of a new website, The Business of Touch, designed specifically to help business professionals create good first impressions with people from other cultures. The site demonstrates, through animated characters, the proper etiquette for successful greetings in nine languages and fifteen countries, including the United States.
lloyds launches new current account for UK muslims
Lloyds TSB has launched a new current account hoping to cater for the UK's 2 million Muslims. The move is apparently the first step in a move to offer a range of Islamic banking alternatives to Muslims who may be using current accounts or opting out of the banking system due to its foundation of the concept of 'riba' (usury).Read more: Lloyds TSB
no plans for expat travel permit in uae
The UAE Interior Minister has denied reports that expatriates would soon need a permit to travel abroad. Lt Gen Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan has said that he had never heard of any such plans and that such a move would not be consistent with the development of the UAE.Read more: UAE
tesco turns to poland to fill job shortages
Tesco is bringing Polish workers to the UK because it cannot fill vacancies. The workers will take on jobs as lorry drivers and in stores. A trial recruitment began at the beginning of the month with 70 Poles brought over.Read more: Tesco
demand for arabic speakers soars
Just as Russian was the language of need during the Cold War, Arabic has now come to represent the language of the 'adversary'. Demand for the language is soaring yet governments and organisations are having great difficulty finding Arabic speakers.
The language had in fact been ignored prior to 2001 by educational institutions and international bodies such as the UN. This now is rapidly changing. The Swiss diplomatic service has doubled funding for Arabic instructions and the Dutch have made Arabic lessons available to diplomats. "In the past, Russian would have helped a job candidate more, but now Arabic is the highly sought language," said Sonja Kreibich, a spokeswoman for the German Foreign Ministry in Berlin.Read more: Arabic
London Stock Exchange launches russian section on website
The London Stock Exchange launched a dedicated CIS market section on its website on Monday in both Russian and English.
Users will be able to find information in Russian and English on AIM and Main Market requirements and track the performance of CIS companies trading on either the International Order Book (IOB) or on AIM. The section will also provide users with the latest information on listing seminars and investor conferences.Read more: LSE
google plans to distinguish itself through language translation technology
The question investors are asking is how does Google plan to continue growing and how will it become distinct from the many other search engines including Yahoo! and MSN?
At present Google is not the leading search engine in Asia, as it is in Europe and the US. However, the company is confident of attracting further investors through their plans to distinguish themselves from competitors through the expansion of their language translation technology, hoping to attract a large chunk of the 64% of internet users that do not speak English.Read more: Google
korean comics crossing the cultural divide
Korean comic books are now one of the best selling comic books in the US. The comics hit American shelves last summer and have fast become the third most popular comics, commanding a 5% share of the market. The industry is said to be worth $6 million per annum and set to rise to $10 million next year, an 8% share of the market. With the interest has come calls from Koreans to promote the comics further abroad with the hope of advancing the Korean culture.Read more: Korean Comics
word of the day: segue
segue \SEG-way; SAYG-way\, verb:
To proceed without interruption; to make a smooth transition.
Daylight segued into dusk. --Susan Dworski
Our honeymoon seemed to segue into a month of dinner parties. --Robert McCrum, My Year Off: Rediscovering Life After a StrokeProvided by Dictionary.com
Monday, February 14, 2005
Poor cross cultural awareness: Thailand
A new article at the Kwintessential articles page uses the example of the recent loss of patience in Thailand to culturally insensitive foreigners to illustrate the need for tourists, business travellers and businesses to show cultural awareness.
In September 2004 a new film entitled, 'Hollywood Buddha', launched in South Asia and resulted in demonstrations across the region. The reason? The poster for the film showed the actor sitting on a Budhha's head. Not a very smart move.
This incident combined with a general lack of cross cultural awareness by visitors to Thailand led the government to annouce it was publishing a guide to Thai culture and etiquette for foreigners.Read more: Cross Cultural Etiquette Awareness
Doing Business in Thailand?
Valentine's Day branded 'culturally corrupt' by hardline hindus
Today, Valentine's Day, will witness protests from unhappy 'hardline' Hindus who have vowed to disrupt the celebrations in the state of Madhya Pradesh. The protestors claim the Western celebration is a violation of Indian culture and values.
Hardliners have in the past made a bonfire of Valentine's Day cards and smashed shop windows to protest against the 'cultural corruption'.Read more: Valentine's Day
Expat spouse's right to work
Mulinational companies with large numbers of expatriate workers are to focus on Malaysia and Singapore in the next stage of their campaign to remove obstacles for accompanying spouses seeking employment.
A survey of 300 global companies highlighted that restrictions on a spouse's right to find employment in the new destination was the number one reason for employees to refuse overseas assignments.
At present only Australia, the UK, Canada, New Zealand and Sweden give automatic rights to work. The US grants work permites to spouses of certain categories such as managers or executives. Malaysia and Singapore have been chosen for the next stage of the campaign due to the high numbers of expats needed there and their tendancy to be open to such reforms.Read more: Expat Spouses
EU facing shortfall in labour force
The active labour force in the European Union will be 20 million short of the levels required to sustain growth and pay for an ageing population by 2030, the EU has warned.Read more: EU shortfall
German language expansion in Yemen
The German Embassy and the German House, in cooperation with the Dermalog company, are launching a language program that aims to spread the German language in Yemen aimed at improving the relationship between the two countries.Read more: German in Yemen
the business need to recognize cultural diversity
Kang & Lee, the US based advertising agency, has published some excellent facts and statistics highlighting the need for businesses to recognize the need to think 'out of the cultural box'.
The information is particularly aimed at the Asian American market but nevertheless demonstrates a need to analyse the cultural make-up of a country's population and their habits.
Examples of their market research findings include:
Compared to all other groups, including Caucasians, Asians have the highest percentage of households in the $75,000 or above annual income range;
Of the top-10 most common surnames of San Francisco homebuyers in 1999, nine were Chinese;
On average, Asian Americans spend $635 per trip, nearly 50% more than the average spending per trip among all U.S. travelers;
Asian Americans are the heaviest everyday internet users;
Read more at Kang & Lee
Guide to the spanish speaking world
Multilingual Computing Inc. have published a Guide to the Spanish Speaking World that should be of great benefit to translators, website designers, advertisers, marketing agencies and anyone else with an interest in communicating with a Spanish audience.
The Guide offers 3 articles each looking at a different aspect of the use of Spanish in the business world. Cecilia Piaggio examines the richness and diversity of the language; Arancha Caballero focuses on US Spanish and its challenges; John Yunker offers some insight into the need for Spanish on the web.Download the guide here.
google maps criticised for lack of global cover
The new Google Maps feature has come under fire from observers interested in website globalization. The criticism is simple: 'the USA is not the only country on the planet'. At present the map is only useful for American users as the rest of the world seems to have been lost.
word of the day: inamorata
inamorata \in-am-uh-RAH-tuh\, noun:
A woman whom one is in love with; a mistress.
Each of the gubernatorial candidates has been vying to prove that he is the least likely to take a state plane to the beach for a date with his inamorata or get involved with a struggle over how to evict his spouse from the governor's mansion. --Gail Collins, "Uncontested Contests," New York Times, November 2, 1999
There are cynical experts on romanticism who counsel one to switch from one young inamorata to another in the nick of time. --Paul West, Life With SwanProvided by Dictionary.com