June 5, 2023

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Effective Intercultural Communication With Employees

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When Management committees decide to embrace policies, make changes to their Trade Mark or adopt System Application and Products worldwide, the value of the intercultural communication depends entirely upon the buy-in and commitment on the part of the employees entrusted to implement the decisions on their behalf, making expert Intercultural Communication imperative.

The effectiveness of the methods used to carry out the changes can only be judged by the manner in which the employees carry out the changes. It is essential therefore, that in order for the employees to invest in the buy-in and commitment, their specific culture and individual behaviours within that culture, must be taken into consideration. On a wider level the relevance of Intercultural Communication across the globe becomes essential.

To approach Intercultural Communication with the Employees it is vitally important that they understand fully what is required in terms of shared ‘vision’. To fail in this endeavour, leaves the employee unsure as to your needs and therefore renders a lack of motivation. Because you can visualise what is needed does not mean the employee has that same vision. The employee needs to know, not just the aim of any changes but their ultimate goal and, importantly, the influence this will have on the employees role in the company.

Effective Cultural Communication is of the essence in helping the employee to understand his/her role since they can only be fully cognisant of their expectations with a full understanding on the part of the employer of their individual culture. Therefore, it is crucial to identify those cultures appropriately in accordance with the particular Cultural values unique to the employee’s location in order to capitalise fully on their buy-in, commitment potential. To be effective in the training and Communication according to local Culture, it is vital that the differences within one country alone can vary significantly. A good example of this are the very specific and disparate values in Culture across a country like China where a person from Hong Kong may have a very different conceptual value than his counterpart in Shanghai. Intercultural rules and values can vary immensely and so too can Communication.

In order for maximum buy-in and commitment on the part of the employee much depends upon the style in which the Company conveys its vision of the future. It must be sensitive to the specific Cultural aspects of the employees’ locale and take into consideration wider implications of culture. For instance, some countries eg, the United States, Germany, the UK tend to be task centred and direct in terms of their commercial dealings, where, in Asian countries for instance, such an approach might seem culturally unacceptable and rather curt and rude, since they tend to more pre-disposed to a relationship Culture. They might be offended by a direct approach and would prefer something more personal.

Whilst it is important on the part of the business to tailor their Communication to the employees globally with their own perception for the future and to impart this to them, it can only be undertaken on an appropriate intercultural level if the above elements are observed. It must further be understood that, in some countries, especially in Asian areas, Cultural values are traditional and dependent upon respect for elders so that change is often viewed with suspicion. Intercultural Communication therefore must be imparted with this in mind whilst conveying the corporate vision accurately and not losing import. It is a fine balance therefore between the organisation and the need to maximise the buy-in and commitment factor on the part of the employee.

For the Employee to fully comprehend the concept being conveyed by the organisation, he/she must be able to believe that it is in his/her interests. Efficient management of the cultural initiatives and training, will result in the respect and trust of the employee thus ensuring maximum buy-in and commitment. Appropriate training and understanding with Intercultural communication foremost, will inevitably result in the good will and sincerity of the employee. There is a lot to be gained also in sharing some Cultural activities. Playing sport can be a valuable means of communication in some countries, whilst dining or having a drink together can be an effective means by which to communicate in others.

Concentration upon how Culture influences an employee can help the organisation to assess the skill base and understand that the cultural aspects may affect the way in which they approach the task. Feeling confident and reassured that they can perform the task is key to commitment. In some Cultures for instance an employee might feel intimidated when a new strategy or skill is required and would view any possible failure in implementing the task will result in a loss of dignity.

In conclusion, appropriate and Cultural targeting worldwide and effective intercultural training and Communication is crucial to the future efficiency of global organisations where their employees are concerned.

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