Since we talk about business, it is more than important for a businessman to know and understand other cultures in order to adjust in a single or multicultural environment.
Understanding of the differences from culture to culture helps people to respect individualism and adjust their communicating style in various situations. Multicultural sensitivity is the first step in achieving more productive, effective and interesting work life. Judging others according to your own values might be a big failure in cultural approaching.Ethnocentrism always dissuades people to communicate and sometimes it leads in misunderstanding and creation of gap. A very helpful attitude and virtue which shows sensitivity and development of cultural competence, is tolerance. In a multiethnic market there are many individuals who are ethnocentric and may create problems, tolerance in these situations may be proved as the best choice for communication success. In order to seek the common ground, the development of negotiation skills is very important and crucial when we try to gain something.
“Accepting cultural differences and adapting them with tolerance and empathy often results in a harmonious compromise. ” (Guffey, p. 78) Our way of seeing the other cultures often create some problems, one of these problems is the stereotyping. “Stereotype is an oversimplified behavioral pattern applied uncritically to groups. For example, the Swiss are hard working, efficient and neat; Germans are formal, reserved and blunt; Americans are loud, friendly and impatient. ” (Guffey, p. 79).
It is unfair for many people to put labels and think of them only as members of a group and not as individuals with quality. In economical terms now, the globalization of markets have created radical changes in both culture and communication style. “National boundaries mean less as business expand through mergers, alliances and acquisitions. ” The factors that leaded in the globalization are many, from the technological exploitation to the opening of the eastern front. The people of the world are on the move so the cross-cultural communication is necessary and essential.People have the need to be together and to exchange information, but as organizations become globalize someone could easily expect human relationships to take on decreasing importance.
The role of communication through culture is to maintain the contact and improve the relationships between multiethnic individuals. The nature of human relationships has many dimensions, it is obvious that people interact and identify with each other. Therefore the instinct of interpersonal relationships has the same basic elements with communication: receiving and sending.There are specific areas of communication which enhance the value and effectiveness of multicultural approaching, non-verbal and oral communication include the meaning of communicate with each other. When people are from different cultures is difficult to understand nonverbal communication, but it is a very common way to communicate though it is very difficult to use it properly.
“Verbal symbols are of undeniable importance, forming the basic unit of our communications with others. But of at least equal importance are the myriad of unspoken, nonverbal cues that accompany spoken messages”(Andrews&Baird, p. 140).We can refer to many kinds of nonverbal expressions such as gestures, posture, eye contact and facial expression. Nonverbal communication most commonly referred as body language and it’s always open to interpretation.
It is very difficult to understand nonverbal communication when you interact with people from other cultures, and it’s impossible to learn all the nuances of nonverbal behavior. Most of our body language behavior is learned unconsciously from the childhood and it doesn’t change easily. We must become aware with our behavior in order to increase our sensitivity to other people from different cultures.