The Chartered Institute of Marketing’s latest newsletter features a nice little article by Kwintessential’s Neil Payne on cross-cultural communication when working internationally.
Culture affects everything we do. It is a shared framework of understanding and a basis for communication. For marketers who work internationally or interact regularly with counterparts overseas, poor understanding of each others cultural background can lead to uncomfortable situations, bad decisions and ineffective relationships.
Dutch Professor Geert Hofstede developed the first model for measuring how values in the workplace are influenced by culture. Though dating from the 70s, his theory can still help reduce levels of frustration, anxiety and concern. It can improve your understanding of other cultures and success in global team situations.
Hofstede concluded that there are 5 dimensions to cultural cross-communications. By knowing how a culture measures up on each scale you can understand their behaviour and relate to them more effectively.
Read more> Culture Clash
“Cultural know-how can be a great advantage in a competitive market but it has the potential to play havoc with relationships. It is critical to be aware of the differences. This means taking the time to research cultures, appreciate needs, moulding your concepts and ideas and most importantly communicating in a suitable manner”.
Neil Payne, Kwintessential