Nowadays, the world’s development requires that many things begin to globalize. Globalization as the inexorable integration of markets, capital, nation-states, and technologies in ways that allow individuals, groups, corporations, and countries to reach around the world farther, faster, deeper, and cheaper than ever before. (Thomas, 2000) The world today is characterized by a growing number of contacts which results in communication between people with different cultural background.
In these circumstances, the communication in cross-domain, inter-ethnic and inter-cultural exchanges between the economic and social intercourse is growing day by day, which provides us many opportunities to contact and communicate with westerners.
This is a good thing to us Chinese. However, different nations hold different cultures. For instance, “full moon” symbolizes jubilation and reunion in China, and “a bright moon in the sky” makes people feel quiet and at leisure. Cultures are quite different from one country to another.
The culture of a country includes lots of things such as religion, public behavior, total life style, political structure of the society, history of the country (but only as it reflects cultural mind-sets, or the manner in which its members think, feel, and act; not a detailed history), social class structure, food and eating behavior, leisure pursuits and interests and so many factors else.
(Martin, 2001) Under I will explain the impact of cultural differences in my interactions with others especially when dealing my classmates and friends from different cultural backgrounds. ) How communicating with someone from another culture was different? When I first came to Singapore, it was very difficult for me because I didn’t speak that good of English when I first got there, so as far as having a relationship with my classmates and roommates that was hard. But I’d like to communicate with foreigner, because I can practice my English and I wish that I can make friends with foreigner students. In my student hostel, there were people from all over the world like Thailand, China, U. S, Indonesia, and even France or South Korea.
We have different language and different cultural background. So we must know some effective ways to communicating with other students. My experience tell me that how to communicating with someone from another culture was different. 1. Usually I speak in a clear voice, minimizing an accent if possible. Someone from a different culture may have limited communication skills in your native language. 2. Remain patient when someone from a different culture that has trouble understanding you. Repeat your message paraphrasing as needed to get the meaning across.
3. Develop active listening skills to understand what is being said. Allow them to express their thoughts before responding; focus on what they are trying to express without making judgments about their character or personality. 4. Pay attention to nonverbal communication. Hand gestures, facial expressions, posture and personal space all convey different meanings across cultures. Understand the culture of the person you’re dealing with to adjust nonverbal interactions. 3). Western concept of “time is money” is deep-rooted, they usually tie the time concept to the money.
So they treasure time very much, they will work out a very elaborate arrange and plan before putting it into practice. They have a good habit to have a date on time. I had a mentor from UK when I was in diploma. Once, after shopping in nearby Vivo City, acting on the spur of the moment, I wanted to visit him at his home. I expected him to be delighted upon seeing my face, no one he was angry. Then he told to me:” in west, when you want to call on someone, you should have a call with him or send him a notice in advance, including purpose, time and place.
Only when he accepts your request, can you go and visit him. ” The incident, I know that when we dealing with someone from a different culture, cultural differences must cross our mind. We should always realize that we are dealing with the people from another culture background, there must be something should be avoided in the conversation such as political issues, some personal commons on the country, problems between diverse religions you believe in or something like that. 4) Before I make assumptions based on my own values and attitudes when I deal with someone from a different culture.
Sometimes, our group was split on the question of Power Point background. We often give color some meanings, because we feel differently when facing different colors. So people always have preference when choosing colors of clothes, decorations, etc. it’s easy to realize that what red means is almost opposite in the East and the West. Red means luck, fortune here. We Chinese often use this color to decorate in festivals, such as red lanterns, red Chinese nodes, and red bangers. But red stands for blood, revolutions in the West.
People from China do not regard name, year, marital status, wages, personal life, belief and political points as personal affairs. They ask such questions to show their care, which in the view of westerns it is, an invasion of their privacy. In Chinese, I usually say “Dear, you become thinner, from now you should pay more attention to your body” or “My friend, you gather flesh. ” to show my concern. Another example is I usually say “hi, have you had your meal? ” “Where are you going? ” “What are you going to do? ” to show my passion.
However, in the western countries, the above questions are just question, not greeting at all. They may think you are inviting them to dinner if you ask about their meals. My main foreigner friends come from Vietnam, Singapore, and Thailand. I will talk about the girl from Thailand. She could speak English well but English for her was not her first language and she actually had difficulty voicing out. 5) If you had any encounters with individuals from a different culture in your study teams, did it affect team dynamics?
Usually each course has a group assignment or presentation, when I was in diploma. My first group At first when our group was founded, the guy from Singapore hope that we could speak and write proper English so that our assignments could achieve better results and can save more time as well. Having language barrier was difficult for us to work as a team as it will slow us down when it comes to communication. But as a Chinese student, I was usually given the more basic and easier ones. As for my part, I think a multinational has more vigor than a traditional group.
Because we received different education and come from different culture background. Conclusion The purpose of this lesson is to provide information that is useful for developing effective working relationships with people from cultures substantially different from your own. We should read more literature, newspapers, magazines and comment on current affairs, only in this way, can we understand the other country cultural back ground well, expand our view, improve our communication and avoid some embarrassments and misunderstandings.
The cultural differences may exist within the same country or from different countries. Being able to work well with people from other cultures, both outside and inside your own country is important for personal and organizational success. Being able to relate to a culturally diverse customer base is also necessary for success. Have the time and opportunity to develop meaningful relationships and to learn about the culture of the other.
1. Edgar Schein, (2004), Organizational Cultural and Leadership. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. 2. http://www. transitionsabroad. com/listings/study/articles/studymay1. shtml The Impact of Study Abroad Educational Travel as a Model for Responsible Tourism By Shoshanna Sumka 3. Thomas Freidman, (2000), The Lexus and the Olive Tree. New York, NY: Anchor Books. 4. http://www. docin. com/p-11448106. html feng guofeng impact of cultural differences 2008
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