Lecture Cultural Intelligence (4)

Understanding Self and Others
Developing Cultural Intelligence
• To understand the concept of culture in
relation to cultural intelligence
• To explain the meaning of cultural intelligence
• To consider competences required for working
effectively in cross-cultural teams
Quick questions -1
You are asking a question of a junior Japanese colleague and he/she
looks down and answers you. He/she :
A. Has something to hide and is looking for answer to cover their back
B. Is paying your respect
A potential Mexican client arrives 45 minutes late for a business
meeting. He/she:
A. Has arrived late on purpose to show that they are the party in the
driving seat
B. Has simply arrived late as punctuality is taken lightly in Mexico
C. Has arrived late to let you enjoy your surroundings before discussing
Quick questions -2
While in South Korea, you present a gift to a new client to thank him for his
hospitality and to cement your business relationship. He/she refuses to
accept the gift. You should:
A. Apologise for offending him/her
B. Insist he/she takes it until it is accepted
C. Offer it to someone else from his/her company
You are beginning negotiations with a Chinese company. From the start of
the meeting the Chinese team show great humility and deference. You
should think:
A. Such behaviour is a ploy designed to gain concessions
B. Such behaviour is just the way Chinese people are
C. Such behaviour shows these negotiations will be easy
Layers of Culture
• A national level
• A regional and/or ethnic and/or religious
and/or linguistic affiliation
• A gender level
• A generation level
• A social class level associated with educational
opportunities and profession
• An organizational or corporate level
What is Culture?
• “Culture
is the collective
programming of the mind which
distinguishes the members of one
group or category of people from
another” (Hofstede 1994:5).
British Culture?
Starting to Understand different Cultures
Cultures are like underground rivers
that run through our lives and
relationships, giving us messages that
shape our perceptions, attributions,
judgments, and ideas of self and other.
Cultural icebergs
We do not necessarily always see
the entire picture, there is a lot
unsaid, and unseen (portion of
iceberg below water level).
Competences for working across cultures
By competences, focus is on:
Personal qualities, and
Why Cultural Intelligence is Important
• “Low Cultural Intelligence Can Hijack your Career: Will you
shine on the global stage or cause an international
incident?” (Leung, 2008).
• More able to, and better prepared to deal with culture
shock and disorientation.
“We don’t look so much at what and where people have
studied, but rather at their drive, initiative, cultural
sensitivity” (Steven Green, Group CEO, HSBC. Harvard
Business Review, August 2003).
Exploring Culture
• Exploring culture balances understanding and doing, theory
and practice.
• The intellectual challenge is understanding the essence of
national culture: the rules of the social game that differs
across borders. The emotional challenge is being able to put
yourself in the place of someone from another country.
• We all have the capacity to communicate with other people,
however unlike ourselves they might be, and to learn to
understand them.
Cultural Intelligence and mindfulness
Mindfulness (your
conscious or
unconscious actions,
planning or reflecting)
Knowledge (your
ability to develop
awareness of self
and others based
on international
Behaviour (your
ability to adapt
your behaviour ,
based on learning,
according to the
• We have learned that every culture is made up of
different layers, rather like an onion!
• We have learned that cultural intelligence (CQ) is
an important skill to develop if we are going to
work successfully and effectively with others
• We have learned that it is not enough to know
about different cultures, but also how to behave
when we interact in, and with those, from
different cultures
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