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Communicating Across Cultures
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  1. Communicating Across Cultures

  2. On April 18, 2002, the San Francisco Chronicle ran the following headline on the front page, regarding the explosive new products launched by Abercrombie & Fitch:  "ABERCROMBIE & GLITCHAsian Americans rip retailer for stereotypes on T-shirts“ Slogans on these T-shirts included: "Wong Brothers Laundry Service -- Two Wongs Can Make It White."  "Abercrombie and Fitch Buddha Bash -- Get Your Buddha on the Floor" Comment from representative of Abercrombie & Fitch "We personally thought Asians would love this T-shirt," said Hampton Carney, with Paul Wilmot Communications in New York, the public relations firm where Abercrombie referred a reporter's call. 

  3. Objectives • Define communication and list its four functions • Describe the communicationprocess • Contrast the three common types of small-groupnetworks • Identify factors affecting the use of the grapevine

  4. Objectives (cont.) • Describe common barriers to effective communication • List four rules for improving cross-cultural communication • Outline behaviors associated with providing effective feedback • Identify the behaviors related to effective active listening

  5. Functions of Communication • Control - both formal and informal • Influence - clarification and feedback • Emotional expression - fulfillment of social needs • Information - facilitating decision making

  6. The Communication Process

  7. Classification by Direction • Downward • Lateral • Upward

  8. Classification by Form • Oral • Written • Non-verbal

  9. Non-verbal Communication Body movement - Body language adds to, and often complicates, verbal communication • Intonations - Change the meaning of the message • Facial expression - Characteristics that would never be communicated if you read a transcript of what is said • Physical distance - Proper spacing is largely dependent cultural norms

  10. Computer-AidedCommunication • Electronic mail (e-mail) • Videoconferencing

  11. Communicating Emotion via E-mail

  12. Notcontrolled by management Perceived as being morebelievable and reliable Largely used to serve self-interest Appear in response to situations Important to us Where there is ambiguity Under conditions that arouse anxiety The Grapevine

  13. Filtering Selective Perception Information Overload Gender Styles Emotions Language Barriers to Effective Communication

  14. HighContext LowContext High- vs. Low-Context Cultures • Chinese • Korean • Vietnamese • Arab • Greek • Spanish • Italian • English • North American • Scandinavian • Swiss • German Source: Based on the work of E.T. Hall from R.E. Dulck, J.S. Fielden, and J.S. Hill, “International Communication: An Executive Primer,” Business Horizons, January-February 1991, p. 21.

  15. A Cultural Guide • Assume differences until similarity is proved • Emphasize description rather than interpretation or evaluation • Practice empathy • Treat your interpretation as a workinghypothesis

  16. Ethics in Cross Cultural Communication • What is a lie? • What is humor?

  17. Improving Active Listening Skills 1. Make eyecontact 2. Exhibit affirmative head nods and appropriate facial expressions 3. Avoid distracting actions or gestures 4. Ask questions 5. Paraphrase 6. Avoid interrupting the speaker 7. Do not over talk

  18. Summary • Defined communication • Described the communicationprocess • Described common barriers to effective communication • Listed four rules for improving cross-culturalcommunication • Identified factors affecting the use of the grapevine • Identified the behaviors related to effective activelistening