Wednesday, March 12, 2008

When people think about communication they usually focus on the ability to send the message. It is important to note that the ability to listen or to receive the message is just as important. Listening is a skill that needs to be developed; it does not just happen without effort. Listening accounts for half of the entire communication process.

When listening to another person or reading another person’s message, it is important to evaluate where it is coming from. Is the subject matter important to this person, or is it a casual message? Does the sender have any background experience that would shape their beliefs and expectations? You should be able to draw some conclusions in the beginning, but do not let them overshadow the information that you are collecting.

When being a good listener, pay attention to all the cues that are given to you. These are the same cues that you focus on when you are sending a message to another person. Some examples are voice intonation, message length, emotion, and body language. A common mistake that most listeners make is that they start thinking about a reply before they fully take in the message that is sent to them. This is what occurs anytime an interruption occurs. You obviously can’t listen and interpret meaning if you are busy worrying what your next word will be.

In addition to making sure that you receive the entire message, there are different steps you can take to make sure that the other person knows that you are listening or that you understand the words that they have sent to you. When you reply to what was said, the sender knows that you got the message. This feedback you reply allows the speaker to add to the meaning and make sure that you do indeed understand. If you are able to have a visible meeting with the person, you can use body language such as nodding and other gestures to show that you are eagerly listening. If you are having trouble understanding fully, try paraphrasing what has been said back to the speaker to clarify any points. Additionally, ask specific questions and tell the speaker to elaborate.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Difference Between Americans and French
1. Americans are highly explicit whereas French people are highly implicit.

2. Americans are optimst and positive whereas French people are pessimist and negative.

3. Ameicans are binary : "it is true or false" whereas French peolpe are contextual : "it depends".

4. Americans are like what is simple whereas Frech people like what is complex.

5. Americans do not lie whereas for French People lying is no beag deal.

6. Americans want to be loved whereas French people want to be independent.

7. Americans social identity is based on the individual whereas French People social identity is based on being a member of a group.

8. For Americans law and contracts must be respected ; everything is in the contract once it is signed whereas French People try not to get caught ; signing a contract is just the beginning.

9. For Americans a contract is not linked to the relationship whereas for French People the contract is strongly associated with the relationship.

10. Americans are process oriented : everything must be clear and documented ; reacts as planned whereas French People like grey zones and nuances ; very creative ; very quick to react and sometimes more inventive.

11. Americans try to get a win-win deal where as for French People if the other one wins, it means that I'll lose.

12. Americans value quality of work where as French People value quality of life.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Who needs Intercultural Awareness???
Although intercultural awareness and the need for it are gaining mainstream recognition, people still ask - "Who needs intercultural awareness?" In truth the question should be, "Who does not need intercultural awareness?"
The mixing of people from all cultures, faiths and countries has always existed, yet today's world sees it occurring more frequently and in greater numbers. People are interacting on the international stage for both work and business purposes and it is often the case that intercultural misunderstandings lead to negative consequences. There have been well documented incidences of tourists receiving hostile reactions by natives or business personnel losing deals. In many instances the cause has been cultural, such as wearing inappropriate clothing in a conservative culture or approaching a business relationship too casually.
In short, intercultural awareness is a skill needed by anyone mixing with people from different cultural backgrounds. However, there are four distinct categories of people that are in need of intercultural awareness the most.


Although this group of people may not realise it, when visiting a foreign country you come to represent your own culture. An ignorance of the culture you are visiting can and does lead to development of stereotypes and occasionally the causing of offence to the native culture. There are many examples within the tourist industry of feathers being ruffled due to the behaviour and actions of visiting tourists, whether it is alcohol fuelled teens in Greece or scantily clad women in the Gulf.
Intercultural awareness at a surface level helps tourists understand their boundaries when visiting a foreign country and promotes good relations with the native culture.

People who work in Multi-Cultural Teams

Very few industries are now homogenous in their ethnic make-up. With the development of transport technology and the increased need for immigrant labour, we now find foreigners working in industries as varied as agriculture, nursing, manufacturing, law, education, social services, catering and transport.
With the numbers of different cultures interacting, communication problems naturally occur. Intercultural awareness is a necessity to ensure communication between staff is clear and also between management and personnel. With clearer lines of intercultural communication established, companies face fewer problems and see greater productivity.

People who work globally

Domestic companies can rarely escape the need to deal with clients or customers from different cultures. Whether it is for import, export, or general trade, business personnel need to work effectively with people from different cultures and therefore different ways of communicating, thinking, meeting, negotiating and doing business generally. Intercultural awareness is a means to establishing better relationships and promoting healthier business prospects through minimising the possibility of misunderstandings born of intercultural differences.


As companies continue to expand globally, more and more people are being sent to work in foreign countries. Usually on a two or three year stint, the expatriate is expected to apply skills that may have been honed within their native culture to an alien one. In many cases the intercultural differences in areas such as interpersonal communication, managerial styles, conflict resolution and office culture lead to such relocations failing.
Intercultural awareness allows the expatriate to enter into the new environment with the intercultural knowledge to mould their behaviours and preferences so that intercultural synergy is achieved.

Intercultural Awareness

As we can see, being sensitive to intercultural differences is a need for many people. In a world that is constantly shrinking, coming to know and appreciate the cultural differences between us is paramount to ensuring the future is one of co-operation and mutual success.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

I am Kovid Bhandari. I am pursuing my MBA in Fianance. My major has always been commerce. I did my under-graduation from India in Bachelors of Commerce.

I am starting this topic as i was always interested in knowing more about China and now when i have got a platform, i dont want to miss this chance.

I would like to start a topic on inter-cultural differences between India and China as most of our classmates are either Indians or Chinese.

1. Difference in family bondings.

I think Indian parents are more concerned about their kids than Chinese parents. I am not saying that Chinese parents are not at all concerned but they tend to leave after their child after they are over the age of 18.

2. China needs to hide its poverty and beggers etc. while crying itself hoarse about its achivements and developments trying to prove to every tom , dick, and harry that they are doing so GREAT, while hiding the fact that the CHINESE ECONOMY has too much disparity among rich and poor, cities and countryside, and can COLLAPSE at any time if western countries stop buying their goods or impose economic sanctions.

Comments are welcome.