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How to communicate in a new culture?

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1 How to communicate in a new culture?
Communication skills

2 How to communicate in a new culture? (Communication skills)
This module gives you basic understanding about the ways and importance of the process of communicating with other people. The focus is on aspects related to communication skills in a foreign country, but the information offered is applicable for an everyday life and can be used in your home country. The topics to be covered in this module include language skills, effective communication and negotiation skills and. We also provide you some links to self-assessment tools and links to self-help tutorials, as well as additional information about the topics. Effective communication Language skills Negotiation skills Self-assessment tools and links to self-help tutorials


4 What is communication ? Communication plays a key role in all aspects of life. Communication means: - contact (information exchange) between people, - the exchange of thoughts, ideas and meanings. It is important to send signals (words, gestures) which can be understood by the sender and recipient. More information on the pages listed below:, Definitions of communication, Communication, Communication, A definition and model of communication,

5 There are three basic communication skills
ORAL Presentation Audience awareness Critical listening WRITTEN Academic writing Revision and editing Critical reading NON- VERBAL Personal presentation Body language More information on the pages listed below:, Communication skills, Introduction to communication skills, Communication skills, Definition of communication skills

6 Communication channels and communication media
The communication channel is a way through which message is send to recipient There are two main channels of communication: oral and written. Communication channels alone are not enough for good communication, so that we need also the communication media. The medias are tools used to store and deliver information or data. More information on the pages listed below:, Communication media, Communication media, systems and strategy, Communication channels

7 Communication channels and communication media (continued)
Oral channels are using media listed below: face to face, telephone calls, speech, presentations, meeting, teleconferencing, videoconferencing. + Pros  Cons Possibility to obtain an immediate response. This type of communication allows you to decide in shorter time whether to reach an agreement sooner. You can ask questions or share comments or opinions. Very limited ability to correct sended message. During the talks, meetings and speeches, you can not erase the already spoken sentences.

8 Communication channels and communication media (continued)
Written channels nowadays take many forms (medias), using both – traditional and electronic equipment. The most commonly used are: list, notes, s, communicators, faxes, websites. + Pros  Cons All messages can be planned and controlled A documented record of the conversation Message does not have the emotional factor You can avoid falsification arising from the transfer of the information verbally Lost of the opportunity for immediate response. Other side of communication process can also plan and control their response. This kind of communication can often be less effective

9 Can be used in Cross-cultural communication topic or if not deleted
Cultural diversity To communicate effectively in a new country, you should get to know not only the language of the nationality, but also customs, traditions and culture. With a good preparation you will avoid major mistakes. In Europe standards of behaviour in most countries are similar. This area of world is consistent and you should not meet many difficulties here, if you only can show a little understanding and commitment to explore the European tradition. Here you can find out more about Europe:, European travel, history, culture, languages, trivia & statistics

10 THE RELUCTANT ENTREPRENEUR IN THE UK (ETHNIC FOOD): „She spoke good English and had a good understanding of English culture through reading and she considers this was essential in developing relationships with suppliers and understanding the regulations that needed to be complied with in order to run a successful business in England.” THE RELUCTANT ENTREPRENEUR IN GREECE (KNOWLEDGE): „When she first came to Greece, she was 25 years old and very interested in language and culture. Thus, shortly after her arrival, Mrs. L studied Greek for two years at a university in order to better communicate with locals.”

11 Cultural diversity (continued)
Can be used in Cross-cultural communication topic or if not deleted Cultural diversity (continued) In other parts of the world (depending on the political system, religion or tradition), you can meet unknown to you yet, habits or problems. If you want to learn more about the cultures of countries from around the world look at the following sites:, Differences in cultures, Different cultures of the world, World culture, Seves dimentions of culture, Cultural differences, Social customs and cultural differences, Cultural differences

12 Effective communication skills
It is worth to remember that you should: Refer to the topic of conversation and to clarify its purpose: The ability to say most important things as a one sentence; Use a clear idea of communication ( who? what, where? how? when? why?- give as many details as possible). Know the audience Observe people in a new country and learn their way of behaviour; Use appropriate form of communication with using the well-known language of the recipient (remember to build complete sentences in a language understood by the recipient, be aware that not all are linguists). Attract the listener's attention and try to keep the interest as long as possible Start with something interesting, try to be nice and remember that smile is very important; Speak loud and during conversation look at people; Ask questions and try to be in touch with your recipient. Think about the form of expression: Changing the pace and tone of voice; Keep pauses; Underline what is important.

13 Effective communication skills (continued)
Use appropriate means of communication, while maintaining the principle that the best is to provide the same information in more than one form The memory is unreliable, try not only talk but also send , letter or leave a note, etc. Make sure that recipient reached the message (remember to repeat) Make sure that you have understood the intention of the assigned media Ask for a summary or repetition of content; If summary or repetition does not work openly ask if you have been misunderstood. Monitor the recipient's response: Observe the recipient and his facial expression, gestures and eyes; If you will not be understood, you will be able to notice that.

14 How to improve your communication attractiveness in the new culture
How to improve your communication attractiveness in the new culture? Express tips. Maintain eye contact. Be alive and remember about smile. Show interest. Be open, involved in discussion. Stand/sit upright, tilt forward for expressions of interest. Do not be afraid to approach people, but remember to maintain proper distance. Pay attention to the way of dressing - carefully match colours and additions. Try to balance the need to speak to the need to listen.

15 Why communication in business is so important?
If you know the rules of communication and you know how to use them in running a business you have the opportunity to: achieve better business results, easily achieve the objectives, have more efficient handling of the negotiations, increase loyalty and commitment of people to you, improve relations and mutual understanding, explain to people the need for change and a reduction in their inherent resistance to their introduction. More information on the pages listed below: -, Why is business communication so important for a company? -, Why business communication is so important? -, Why good communications are important?

16 Effective communication in business relationships
If you want to be understood and communicate effectively follow those points: Use the method of "face to face" in the direct management, Do not speculate, cheat or lie because it leads to increased uncertainty among business partners, Provide business partners sufficient time for the speech, Be patient no matter what senders message concerned - you do not have to agree with him but you should give him chance for free expression of opinion, Communicate with business partners in a clear, honest and consistent way.

17 Non-verbal communication is contained in:
Good to know ... Transmission of the importance of information is done through: words and language (verbal communication), tone of voice, body language (gestures and other forms of expression called also nonverbal communication). Non-verbal communication is contained in: mimicry of the sender and recipient of a message, mutual glances, body positions, gestures, intonation of voice, expression of feelings.

18 Good to know ... (continued)
The message should be worded clearly, properly reflect the thoughts and intentions of the sender. For example: When you walk into the bakery and you see lots of colourful cupcakes you should say: „I'd like a chocolate cupcake with grated coconut and toffee sauce, first one from the left in the price of 3 pounds”. Instead of: „I'd like cupcake”. The phrase "I'd like cupcake" is not precise enough in this situation. By using this phrase you will not be fully understood, so get ready for questions such as: Which cupcake do you mean? Which flavour you interested in? Could you show the cupcake? The message should be compatible with accepted customs in a given environment, standards and requirements. For example If you are organising a formal meeting on a certain topic and want to start it properly you should say e.g.: „Good morning. Thank you for coming. The theme of our meeting today is X”. Instead of: „Hi. How are you? It's nice to see you because we have to talk about X”. If you use the second sentence the group, you are talking to might feel offended, because such statements are not acceptable in formal situations.

THE POSITIVE CHOICE ENTREPRENEUR IN FINLAND (SKILLED): Mrs M. could hardly speak any Finnish and there were no language courses available for Estonians at that time, either. The shock due to the collapse in her social status when moving to a new country was hard. But as her language skills improved, she was able to get better jobs, meet more people and improve her language skills. THE WORK-LIFE BALANCE ENTREPRENEUR IN GREECE (KNOWLEDGE BASED): „On the other hand a foreigner who doesn’t speak the national language may encounter difficulties in accessing information through everyday procedures and in understanding how the system works. For this reason she took care to study Greek in a school for immigrants.”


21 What are negotiations? What they are for?
Negotiation is a process by which the partners aim to achieve the most favorable solution of problem or conflict situation. Negotiations should: Be beneficial to both parties, Be based on communication and collaboration, Rely on reaching compromise, which both partners agree (consesnus). More information on the pages listed below:, Definition of negotiations, Negotiations, Negotiations, The 4 steps of negotiations process

22 Six golden rules of negotiation
If you want to succeed in negotiations follow those six rules: Never agree to first offer without negotiation. Remember that the starting offer is typically overstated, so it is not worth to accept it without negotiations. Put yourself in the situation of your partner. Think what is important to him and what could he possibly give up, after analysing you will be able to predict his actions and it will be easier to negotiate. Do not limit discussion to one issue. A wide range of topics allows you to divert attention to other issues and to return to the left topics in the most favourable time for you. Agree on some negotiation points reported by your partner if possible and if it will not cost you too much. Your opponent will receive it as his great victory. Everyone likes to win, let him feel that something was accomplished. Trade-off will work automatically and then you will get something from him. Remember to always separate the people from the business. Business is critical to the negotiations – not people. Privately you can be a friend of your negotiation partner, but when it is necessary you should consequently negotiate about issues important to you. When negotiations are successful transaction, congratulate your opponent and tell a few words about his good negotiation skills.

23 How to negotiate effectively?
If you are not sure how to behave during the negotiations, don’t worry. We have for you some advice: Do not be afraid to ask for better conditions. You have a right to want more. Simply make sure nothing more can be done. If you hear "no", try at least one more time. Polite question, even if repeated, will never be left without an answer. Do not show off, do not be overenthusiastic. Try to be yourself – this is always the best way to gain the most. If an opponent asks you for something - always ask for something in return. Always be prepared to stop negotiations. If you see that you're stuck in a place not afraid to break the negotiations. You can request a change of a negotiating partner and try again.

24 Are you good negotiator?
Do you want to know if you can handle yourself as a negotiator? Consider whether these features are your strengths or weaknesses. If most of them are strengths – it’s more likely, that you will succeed! sense of responsibility, talent to convince others, ability to observe and listen to others, interdisciplinary knowledge, knowledge of foreign languages, compliance with the rules of ethics, external conditions of negotiator, such as kindness and tact, elementary principles of education, etc.

25 Abilities and skills useful in the negotiations
If you have identified some of the features mentioned previously as your weaknesses, find out about the most popular negotiating skills and abilities – learn them, train and believe in yourself! Careful preparation: Write down targets of negotiations. Point them from most important to least important (Now you know why do need to negotiate and what is your target). Try to analyse the situation and plan the next steps. Get as much information as possible about issues and problems that will be discussed during the negotiations. Do not let anything or anyone surprise you. Analyse strengths and weaknesses of their and your situation.

26 Abilities and skills useful in the negotiations (continued)
Brilliance Be as fast as you can. Analyse problems, search for solutions, precisely respond to questions during the negotiations. Be creative. Precision of expressing Speak clear and simple language. Determine the order of issues and keep up on it- these scheme will help you not to miss any issues. Careful listening Show interest to your partner. Pay your whole attention to the other side. Keep in mind, that e.g. you should not look at your watch or write sms. Ask questions – your partner will know that you understand what he is saying and you can also obtain some additional information.

27 Abilities and skills useful in the negotiations (continued)
Proper evaluation Constantly analyse your negotiation results. Try to be objective and fair. If you see that something is going wrong try to fix it up. Honesty Be honest during negotiations. Remember that if you would like to cheat or lie - you can do it only once. Nobody would like to cooperate with unfair company for a second time. Persuasion Accurate selection of the arguments. Accurate, consistent and factual presentation of the arguments. Patience Avoid quick decisions and forcing the other site to them.

28 Communication and business culture - business etiquette
The business etiquette is the basis of behaviour in professional and also public live. It determines the rules of good manners. Knowing the etiquette is also very important in formal situations. Business etiquette makes communication and negotiation easier.

29 Communication and business culture - business etiquette (continued)
The business etiquette - the savoir vivre in business are: The way of communicating your ideas, respect for your business partners and presented body language. Proper manners, following relevant norms and standards in the country or the community. Skills – greeting, eating, giving business cards, correspondence, adjustment of clothing for the occasion, etc.

30 Business etiquette recommendations
Be punctual. It is very important especially if you want to be regarded as the person responsible and reliable. Remember about polite and appropriate greeting, take into account existing rules in the group or community. Do not overuse gestures and remember that in business, as a rule, you do not touch people who participate in discussions. With due respect, get and give each business cards – there are cultures in which the exchange is a very important ritual.

31 Business etiquette recommendations (continued)
Demonstrate patience and openness, even if the person you are talking to is not able to say information clearly. Avoid topics of conversation related to the private issues (e.g. famili), if there is a need to establish personal / direct contact, focus on neutral topics (e.g. weather). Pay attention to the style and proper language, for example there are communities in which using polite forms is extremely important.


33 The importance of language skills
In order to be able to communicate in a new culture, in most of the cases you will need to learn the local language. Although English language can be treated as a universal one and used in many situations, but in sometimes it will not be enough.

34 THE SOCIAL ENTREPRENEUR IN POLAND (BETTER LIFE MOTIVATION): The first work that Mr. D got here in Poland was a position in a marketing company. As the years went by and after numerous contacts with Poles, Mr. D learned the Polish language, customs and behaviors. Experience and contacts gained this way allowed him to open his own business, which he has successfully run for over 5 years. THE KNOWLEDGE ENTREPRENEUR IN FINLAND (POSITIVE CHOICE MOTIVATION): In 2005 they moved to Finland. Mrs. P. then found she had problems finding a job. This was mostly due to the fact that she could not speak any Finnish. So, she took a three month language course which helped her to get a position as a trainee in a local school. This was a very important step in her integration process.

35 What are language skills ?
Language skills refer to the ability to: Communicate verbally, Communicate nonverbally, Communicate in written formats. The chart below shows the division of language skills into four primary elements

36 Listening Listening is not only hearing but also understanding. It covers identifying sounds and transforming them into particular words and sentences. We can point out two kinds of listening: Active – reacting in a way that shows you are listening and that you understand, for example while being in a face to face conversation or when talking on the phone. Passive – listening without reacting. Like when you listen to the radio or watch television.

37 Listening – sub-skills
Recognizing vocabulary. Recognizing stress and rhythm patterns. Recognizing standard word-order patterns. Guessing the meaning from context. Detecting various sentence constituents like verbs, nouns, adjectives etc. Identifing shortened forms of words.

38 Speaking Just like listening, speaking can be active and passive:
Active speaking is when there is an interaction between both the listener and the speaker. It happens in situations like talking on the phone or simply while having a face to face conversation. Passive speaking is when we speak without being interrupted by someone else, like when giving a public speech.

39 Pronouncing sounds clearly enough for others to understand.
Speaking – sub-skills Pronouncing sounds clearly enough for others to understand. Using the correct forms of words. Arranging the words in correct order. Using an appropriate language register. Using proper vocabulary.

40 Reading is identifying vocabulary and understanding it’s meaning.
It can be developed regardless of listening and speaking skills, but generally improves along with them.

41 Reading – sub-skills Recognizing vocabulary. When coming accross unfamiliar vocabulary, figuring out the meaning of words from the context. Distinguishing key words. Recognizing grammatical word classes such as verbs, nouns, adjectives etc. Identifing basic syntactic patterns. Getting the main point of the most important information.

42 Writing is often the most difficult of all language skills.
It is a expression of thoughts in a structured way and a graphical representation of speech.

43 Putting words together in correct order.
Writing – sub-skills Putting words together in correct order. Using the correct form of words. Using correct orthography. Making main ideas distinct from the supporting ones. Using style appropriate to the genre and audience.

44 The order of learning language skills
Listening Speaking Reading Writing

45 Tips for improving your language skills
Try checking local community centres for language courses. Many of them offer courses at very affordable prices. Such courses offer an opportunity to improve your skills by practising with other students and experienced teachers. Keep in mind that listening to the language as often as possible is vital. Rent foreign films and listen to foreign music. The more you listen to the language, the more familiar to you it gets. Read as much as possible. Foreign newspapers, books or even online articles are a great way to familiarize with the language and increase your comprehension skills. Practice your new language whenever and wherever you can. It doesn’t matter whether you talk to a waiter in a restaurant or to a friend, speaking is the best way to improve your skills. You shouldn’t care if you sound a little silly at the beginning, you’re learning, keep practicing! Travel and participate in cultural exchanges. The more you stay in the country where your chosen language is the native tongue the sooner you’ll get the hang of it!

46 THE WEB-ENABLED ENTREPRENEUR IN POLAND (POSITIVE CHOICE MOTIVATION): At first everything went quite smoothly. They managed to get a suitable flat and made a lot of friends. Stefan remembers that the first problems arose when he wanted to register his business. Being able to speak German and fluent English, but not Polish, he could not communicate with the government office workers. He spent an enormous amount of time going from one office to another being sent back all the time.


48 Assessment of communication skills
In order to know how good you are at communicating today, you can use the links below., How good are your communication skills?, Test your communication skills, Interpersonal Communication skills test Also, try to make your own SWOT analysis (S – Strengths, W – Weaknesses, O – opportunities and T – Threats). After that you will know on what you need to work and what communication skills you should improve., Personal SWOT Analysis, SWOT Analysis, SWOT Analysis, How to do a SWOT Analysis

49 How to asses your language skills
Common European Framework of Reference for Language Learning, Teaching and Assessment (CEFR) had developed a description of levels of knowledge of modern languages: Basic user: A1 – A2 Independent user: B1- B2 Advanced user: C1 – C2

50 Explanation of the CEFR levels
For A1 : The learner can understand and use familiar everyday expressions and very basic phrases aimed at the satisfaction of needs of a concrete type. Can introduce him/herself and others and can ask and answer questions about personal details such as where he/she lives, people he/she knows and things he/she has. Can interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help. For A2: The learner can understand sentences and frequently used expressions related to areas of most immediate relevance (e.g. very basic personal and family information, shopping, local geography, employment). Can communicate in simple and routine tasks requiring a simple and direct exchange of information on familiar and routine matters. Can describe in simple terms aspects of his/her background, immediate environment and matters in areas of immediate need.

51 Explanation of the CEFR levels (continued)
For B1: The learner can understand the main points of clear standard input on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc. Can deal with most situations likely to arise whilst travelling in an area where the language is spoken. Can produce simple connected text on topics which are familiar or of personal interest. Can describe experiences and events, dreams, hopes & ambitions and briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans. For B2: The learner can understand the main ideas of complex text on both concrete and abstract topics, including technical discussions in his/her field of specialisation. Can interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers quite possible without strain for either party. Can produce clear, detailed text on a wide range of subjects and explain a viewpoint on a topical issue giving the advantages and disadvantages of various options.

52 Explanation of the CEFR levels (continued)
For C1: The learner can understand a wide range of demanding, longer texts, and recognise implicit meaning. Can express him/herself fluently and spontaneously without much obvious searching for expressions. Can use language flexibly and effectively for social, academic and professional purposes. Can produce clear, well-structured, detailed text on complex subjects, showing controlled use of organisational patterns, connectors and cohesive devices. For C2: The learner can understand with ease virtually everything heard or read. Can summarise information from different spoken and written sources, reconstructing arguments and accounts in a coherent presentation. Can express him/herself spontaneously, very fluently and precisely, differentiating finer shades of meaning even in more complex situations.

53 Have you heard of Europass?
In 1998 the European Commission and Cedefop started a forum which aim (amongst others) was to eliminate problems concearning mobility due to the lacking clarity vocational qualification. This resulted in the creation of The European CV and the Certificate Supplement adopted by the European Parliament. If you never visited the Europass website just get right on it at and learn more. Do not hesitate – the website is user-friendly and can be displayed in numerous languages.

54 Learning materials, tips and links (language skills), Free online language tests, Language proficiency tests online, Language courses and online tests, Polish language courses online, Greek language courses online, Finnish language courses online, French proficiency tests online, Spanish language courses online, Italian language courses online, Online German proficiency tests and language course

55 Learning materials, tips and links (communication), The Relationship Between Communication and Culture, Making a great first impression, Body language, Active listening, Improve Your Relationships With Effective Communication Skills, Breaking Cultural Communication Barriers, Barriers to effective intercultural communication, Tips to break barriers in effective communication, Communications barriers due to cultural diversity

56 Learning materials, tips and links (communication), Negotiations skills training, Effective comunication and negotiation, Techniques for improving the communication skills, Doing Business in Poland- Business Etiquette, Improving negotiation skills, Questions and answers about negotiations, Cultural differences, Effective Communication Skills, Cross Cultural communication

57 Learning materials, tips and links (communication), Cross-cultural negotiations: Avoiding the pitfalls, Intercultural Communication: A Practical Guide, Communication Process, The negotiations process, How to be a goog negotiator, How to reduce barriers to effective communication

58 Learning materials, tips and links (communication), Cross cultural communication, Effective communication, Effective communication skills, Non-verbal communication for leaders, Secrets of body language, Nonverbal communication, Body language, Nonverbal communication, How to read body language

59 Learning materials, tips and links (communication), 14 Tips on Business Etiquette, International Business Etiquette, Manners, & Culture, Business Etiquette Quiz, Business Etiquette or or or

60 Learning materials, tips and links (nagotiations), Can you be a good negotiator?, Are you a good negotiator?, Are you a good negotiator?

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