Culture Shock – Communicating in a Global Environment

I recently attended a fabulous UQ workshop presented by Dr. Maryam Jamarani: “Communicating in a Global environment”. It was so interesting that I wish to share a bit of it with you. A big thank to Maryam who accepted me to share some of her slides and content.


We are so similar yet all unique!


What is culture? A complex notion… at the intercept between visible and invisible

“Culture hides more than it reveals, and strangely enough, what it hides, it hides most effectively from its own participants.” – Edward T. Hall


Make sure you got understood!

“The problem with communication is the illusion that it has been accomplished.”– George B. Shaw

so: make sure you got understood. Ensuring that there is a feedback between the receiver and the emitter of the information is essential.

A mindful request (I keep these bullet points on my desk):

  • Make sure it is spoken
  • Ensure the task to be performed is clearly specified
  • Share the reason for the request
  • Identify the precise time frame for completion
  • Explicitly share your standards for satisfactory completion
  • Make sure you trust the performer
  • Take care to ensure there is a shared understanding (the feedback!)
  • ensure your mood is constructive

To reflect on intercultural communication…

“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view – until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” – Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)

so: Observe/discuss and accommodate and above all, don’t criticize or judge! That’s called emotional intelligence and could take you very far in life (even more than your IQ?!)

clin doeil

Want to learn more: Learn about the science around the taxonomy of cultures and assess where you, your relatives and colleagues stand: Hofstede’s Model, Trompenaars’ model, Edward Hall’s. For the avid book readers: Global dexterity by Andy Molinsky

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