More than 3.5 billion people, who make up about half of the planet’s population, are connected through social networks. These are figures that we can’t ignore since much of what happens around us today is being influenced by these numbers.
If your personal and professional abilities, your experience, and your perspective are not based on a global and multicultural mentality, you are losing all the opportunities that globalization offers you. One of these opportunities is to expand your cultural understanding, but perhaps the most critical is to avoid misunderstandings in multicultural teams.
So let’s see how the lack of cultural understanding and global mentality leads to a cultural shock and misunderstandings in multicultural environments, and how we can avoid them.
When you meet someone for the first time, it is evident that even if he or she speaks the same language or even is native of a nearby region, you notice very quickly that there are differences in the views and perspectives of each person.
If you spend more time with these people, as coworkers or within your group of friends, and connect you begin to see that beyond what unites you with them (work project, goals, etc.) there are a number of values, beliefs, history, personality, profession, religion, customs, to name a few, that differentiate them from you.
As we are getting more and more interconnected with the rest of the planet and aiming to thrive socially, economically, intellectually, and professionally it is more than evident that we need to increase our cultural awareness.
From the corporate point of view, bad communication, cultural shocks, and misunderstandings create a continuous state of low productivity.
Thus, cultural awareness is vital in order to acquire a global view and increase our cultural intelligence giving us a great resource for everyday interactions which is a competitive advantage for today’s entrepreneurs who are constantly interacting virtually and in diverse and multicultural environments.
In the absence of cultural awareness, when facing cultural differences, leaders tend to incur these five (5) main mistakes:
- Resistance to change,
- Disinterest in other cultures,
- Avoid and mismanage uncertainty,
- Misinterpret others,
- Conclude hastily.
In which of these areas do you feel you have a growth opportunity?
During the next week, I will be examining these five common mistakes in detail. In each blog, I will be providing more insight and practical exercises.
Doesn’t matter if you are leading a multinational organization, trying to recruit diverse talent, developing your business in multicultural settings, reaching foreign markets, or just networking and looking to carry on a good conversation in a diverse and multicultural environment; developing your cultural awareness is a key personal and business skill required for your success.
If you want to minimize misunderstandings and maximize productivity, results, and success; click here for more information.
Question: How can we understand other cultures and avoid low productivity? --> You can leave a comment on the comments box below.