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Cross-cultural Communication and Negotiation

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Presentation on theme: "Cross-cultural Communication and Negotiation"— Presentation transcript:

1 Cross-cultural Communication and Negotiation
Chapter 7

2 Chapter Outline The communication process
Noise in communication Direct vs. formal communication Non-verbal communication Body movement and gestures Space Eye contact Touching

3 Chapter Outline (2) Monochronic vs. polychronic time
Practical issues in communication Using interpreters Communication with non-native speakers Avoiding attribution errors

4 The Communication Process
Communication is the process of transferring meaning from sender to receiver. Medium Receiver interpretation Sender meaning Encoding Decoding Feedback The Communication Model

5 The Communication Process
Encoding: The sender expresses a meaning in a message Medium: the means that a sender uses to transmit the message Decoding: the receiver gets the message Interpretation: the receiver tries to understand the meaning of the message Feedback: The receiver responds to the message

6 Noise in Communication
Noise is a factor that causes the receiver to misunderstand the hearer's message. "I wonder if you realize that what you think you heard is not what I meant to say". "Yes" does not always mean "yes".

7 Basic Communication Styles
Direct communication: communication that comes to the point and lacks ambiguity Formal communication: communication that acknowledges rank, titles, and ceremony in prescribed social interaction

8 Exhibit 12.2: Cultural Differences in Communication Styles

9 Context of Communication (1)
Context is the information that surrounds a communication and helps to convey the message Low-context societies – U. S. and most northern European countries Message is explicit and the speaker tries to say precisely what is meant Direct style: focus on speaker's statements Silence may make people uncomfortable Facial expressions and body language may be easy to interpret, if you understand the gestures of the speaker's culture Business meetings are often focused on objectives.

10 Context of Communication (2)
High-context societies – most Arab and Asian countries Business meetings with new contacts focus on relationships first. Business comes later. Indirect style: speaker does not spell out his message Avoid saying "no" Avoid embarrassing people

11 Context of Communication (3)
High-context societies (continued) Messages often are implicit: Listener is expected to de-code verbal and non-verbal cues, such as voice, intonation, timing, body language Silence is used to understand received messages and decide how to reply If the culture is neutral (Asia), control body language and facial expressions – if you do not, people will not trust you or respect you.

12 Exhibit 12.1: Country Differences in High-Context and Low-Context Communication

13 Nonverbal Communication
Communication without words Gestures and body language Space Touching Eye contact Non-verbal behaviors differ in different cultures Major source of "noise" or misunderstandings in cross-cultural communication.

14 Body Movement Communication through body movements
E.g., facial expressions, body posture Most Asian cultures use bowing to show respect No universal code for what body movements mean Easy to misinterpret gestures

15 Space Use of space to communicate
Each culture has appropriate distances for communication North Americans prefer more distance than Latin American and Arab cultures Closed offices vs. open offices

16 Space (2) Distance Intimate distance is used for very confidential communications Personal distance is used for talking with family and close friends Social distance is used to handle most business transactions Public distance is used when calling across the room or giving a talk to a group

17 Personal Space in the U.S.
Intimate distance 18” Personal distance 18” to 4’ Social distance 4’ to 8’ Public distance 8’ to 10’

18 Seating in a Typical Japanese Office

19 Touching Shaking hands, embracing, or kissing when greeting one another. Touching to emphasize a point No touching or low touching E.g., Japan, U.S., England, and many Northern European countries Moderate touching E.g., Australia, China, Ireland, and India Touching E.g., Latin American countries, Italy, and Greece

20 Eye Contact Communication through eye contact or gaze
U.S. and Canada: people are very comfortable and expect eye contact to be maintained China and Japan: eye contact is considered very rude and disrespectful

21 Monochronic Time Things are done in a linear fashion.
Manager addresses Issue A first and then moves on to Issue B Time schedules are very important. Time is viewed as something that can be controlled and should be used wisely Be on time for appointments. Perform services or deliver goods when promised. Meetings have stated objectives and include only the people that need to be there.

22 Polychronic Time People tend to do several things at the same time
People place higher value on personal involvement than on getting things done on time Schedules are less important than personal relationships People should be understanding about delays. In Arab countries, several meetings may be going on in the same room at the same time.

23 Practical Issues in Cross-Cultural Business Communication
Interpreter’s role: to provide a simultaneous translation of a foreign language Require greater linguistic skills than speaking a language or translating written documents Have the technical knowledge and vocabulary to deal with technical details common in business transactions Have to ensure the accuracy and common understanding of agreements

24 Successful Use of Interpreters
Spend time with the interpreter Go over technical and other issues with interpreter for proper understanding Insist on frequent interruptions when it’s necessary Look for feedback and comprehension by watching the eyes

25 Successful use of Interpreters (2)
Discuss the message beforehand Request that your interpreter apologize for your inability to speak in the local language Confirm that all key components of the message have been properly comprehended

26 Communication with Non-native Speakers
Use the most common words with most common meanings Select words with few alternative meanings Follow rules of grammar strictly Speak with clear breaks between words Avoid sports words or words borrowed from literature

27 Communication with Non-native Speakers (2)
Avoid words or expressions that are pictures Avoid slang Mimic the cultural flavor of the nonnative speaker’s language Test your communication success Repeat basic ideas using different words when your counterpart does not understand Confirm important aspects in writing

28 Avoiding Attribution Errors
Attribution: process by which we interpret the meaning of spoken words or nonverbal exchanges Attribute meaning based on our taken-for-granted cultural expectations Easy to make mistakes of attribution Need to observe carefully Avoid subtleties of a foreign language Avoid complex nonverbal behaviors

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