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WHAT IS CULTURE?

 

 

 

 

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“Despite popular beliefs to the contrary, the single greatest barrier to business success is the one erected by culture."
~Edward T. Hall and Mildred Reed Hall
, Hidden Differences: Doing Business with the Japanese 




Culture comes from the Latin word "colere", meaning to build on, to cultivate, to foster.

Culture is a set of accepted behavior patterns, values, assumptions, and shared common experiences.

Culture defines social structure, decision-making practices, and communication styles.  

Culture dictates behavior, etiquette, and protocol.  

Culture is something we learn.  It impacts everyone, and influences how we act and respond.

Culture is communication.  It is a way people create, send, process and interpret information. 

Cultural differences need to be understood and acknowledged before they can be managed.  Understanding and effectively interacting within the cultural groups to which we belong is like walking through a minefield.  Being culturally intelligent means much more than just understanding the culture of other groups or countries.  It means understanding who you are and your own cultural values and beliefs.

Consider the following "cultures", and how they influence your life:

  • Where you were born
  • Your gender
  • Your nationality & heritage
  • How you were raised & your family life
  • Your education and the schools you attended
  • Your religious preferences
  • Your profession
  • Your company and its corporate culture

How do people respond to cultural challenges?

  • Ignore them and hope they will go away, believing that to focus on differences will just make the problems worse
  • Fail to manage cultural challenges and risk experiencing culture shock
  • Recognize the importance of dealing with cultural differences and the possible consequences of taking no action
  • Manage cultural differences - learn to appreciate various cultures, and understand the positive impact of being culturally intelligent

CONTACT US to discuss how our training, consulting, and coaching services can help your company become culturally savvy. 
 

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