Cross Cultural Relationships.
As the world becomes more and more internationally connected, the need to understand people from different cultures and how to interact appropriately with them also increases. Managers and leaders need to develop intercultural competences that can help them be more aware of their own culturally-based perceptions, norms, and patterns of thinking, and consequently adapt their behaviors according to specific cultural contexts.
Managing people across cultures offers solid theoretical frameworks and practical insights to handle the cultural challenges in managing people in a globalized workplace. Cross cultural management addresses topics including cross-cultural communication and understanding at both interpersonal and inter-organizational levels, leading multicultural and global virtual teams, cross-cultural leadership, managing cross-cultural joint ventures, transferring managerial practices across cultures, and managing international assignments.
To understand what is cross cultural relationship, we first need to understand what culture is. Culture : Culture is the philosophy of life, the values, norms and rules, and actual behavior – as well as the material and immaterial products from these – which are taken over by man from the past generations, and which man wants to bring forward to the next generation – eventually in a different form – and which in one way or another separate individuals belonging to the culture from individuals belonging to other cultures.
Cross-cultural organizational behavior (OB) is the study of cross-cultural similarities and differences in processes and behavior at work and the dynamics of cross-cultural interfaces in multicultural domestic and international contexts. Any relationship at a workplace has its pros and cons. However, when it comes to cross cultural relationships, the advantages and challenges faced are different compared to a domestic workplace, which can be seen below. Advantages Of Cross Cultural Relationship At Workplace :
Managers who have worked in foreign locations acknowledge that understanding the culture in those locations is necessary if one is to manage effectively. Some of the advantages of a cross cultural relationship at workplace are as follows :- * Learn the skills required to overcome the potential hurdles embedded in cultural differences and to leverage. * Attain the competencies to manage truly global teams. * Become a leader and motivate people at both interpersonal and organizational levels. Disadvantages Of Cross Cultural Relationship At Workplace :
However, there are some challenges that one faces in such a diverse work environment :- * Communication is the key in workplace and when a person is in charge of across cultural team that can present him/her with many unique challenges in terms of language, dealing with accents and the different meaning of words in different countries. * In case of an organization rolling out a new tool or application that will require training, they need to consider how to provide training for people that are located in different countries and different time zones so that they all get the same message and are able to use the tools in the same way. One might also be subject to discrimination due to race, gender, language, etc. due to difference in opinion among various cultures. Why is it Important : Many different places or areas in which cross-cultural management occurs and in which cross-cultural or intercultural communication plays a large role: a) Management of organizations based in countries with different cultures to one’s own, e. g. Danish companies operating in Japan, Vietnam, South Africa or elsewhere. Danish companies took up the cultural stereotype method.
A cultural stereotype is a widely held, generalized and simpli?ed conception or image of a speci?c group of people. Stereotypes may be divided into stereotypes of self (auto-stereotypes) or stereotypes of others (Heterostereotypes). (The construction of stereotypes often serves as a way to create a group identity by establishing a positive image of self (in-groups) against less positive images of others (out-groups) . Stereotypes of national cultures and people, such as the Japanese, are group-oriented may be created and perpetuated through historical accounts and media representations. ) Management of organizations employing people from different cultures, e. g. IBM, Shell, Volvo. IBM has addressed these challenges with Shades of Blue, a blended training program involving both e-learning and a face-to-face learning lab using IBM-specific case studies and TMC-developed self-awareness tools (the Cultural Orientations Indicator)Line, etc. IBM firmly believes that cross-cultural competence is the glue that enables cohesiveness and collective performance. Culture is the seedbed for performance. In a high-performance environment of the global marketplace, culture is a strategic skill-set of leaders and managers.
As IBM continues implementation of Shades of Blue, the power of multiculturalism will emerge as a key to its competitive superiority in the global marketplace. c) Management of international organizations, e. g. , United Nations, European Union, World Health Organization, etc. cross cultural communication competency can only be truly achieved through cross cultural awareness training, language acquisition, foreign travel and cultural immersion there are some guidelines that can enhance your cross cultural communication skills.
Conclusion : In a world that offers global opportunities as well as global threats, understanding and managing cultural differences have become necessities. Mankind is faced with the dilemma of either sacrificing cultural diversity on the altar of globalisation or using intercultural dialogue to enrich the mutual knowledge of different cultures, a fundamental step towards guaranteeing the possibility of a fair world, in peace and harmony, making full use of some of the instruments that globalisation has developed.
Within the business context, cross cultural communication refers to interpersonal communication and interaction across different cultures. This has become an important issue in our age of globalisation and internationalisation. Effective cross cultural communication is concerned with overcoming cultural differences across nationality, religion, borders, culture and behaviour. Cross cultural communication is critical to the business world.
The diversity of people in cities and countries means an element of cross cultural communication will always be needed whether it is between staff, colleagues, customers or clients. Awareness of cultural differences can favourably impact the success of a business. Improved staff interaction, better customer relations and effective client management are all areas that will reap benefits through cross cultural understanding. In today’s global business environment, more and more of us are required to understand people who come from countries and cultures different from our own.
While there is no short and easy way to learn about a given culture in any depth, there are some general principles that lead to success in communicating and conducting business with people of backgrounds unlike our own. Flexibility, adaptability and open-mindedness are the route to successful cross cultural communication. Understanding, embracing and addressing cross cultural differences leads to the breaking of cultural barriers which results in better lines of communication, mutual trust and creative thinking.
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