Why Self-reflection Is Important in Intercultural Encounters

Before you go on reading, please take out a paper and a pen and sit down for 5 minutes to write down all the thoughts that come through your head when you saw the picture in the top of this article. Without doing this, you will get much less from this article, so I highly recommend you playing along. Next, I want you to…

Establishing guidelines for work in a diverse team

In their book Team Building: Proven Strategies for Improving Team Performance, which certainly is a book worth reading, Gibb Dyer, Jeffrey Dyer and William Dyer 6 guidelines for work in a diverse team.  While most of them are fantastic advice, two of them are also dangerous when dealing with people from a collective culture. 1. Team members who have experience…

Different cultures, different ways of resolving conflicts

Recently a friend of mine was telling me how in the company she previously worked for, ‘Asians were literally abused, because they are so quiet’. Meaning, an incredibly heavy work-load was distributed to them, failure of projects was blamed on them etc. That’s not only sad to hear, but it’s also interesting how people attribute ‘quietness’ to their Asian colleagues. Yes,…

Nothing But Conflicts: Problems in International Negotiation Can’t Be Avoided, But They Can Be Managed

Imagine you representative of a western company want to start a joint venture with a Chinese firm. What is likely to happen, what are the common problems in these cases? Well, the most common problem is that western negotiators are often too impatient. They forget that before they start talking about business, they need to develop a relationship with the…