Course Outcomes

This cultural intelligence and cross-cultural training course will:

  • Increase participants’ cultural intelligence and appreciation for cultural differences.
  • Provide an academic framework for understanding cultural diversity.
  • Offer concrete tips for putting cultural diversity theory into practice.
  • Prepare participants to work better with people from cultures different from their own.

Course Overview

The world is a global economy and most likely staying that way.  Gone are the days of working only with people who grew up where and how you did. Sure, you may sit right next to someone who went to elementary school with you, but on your other side, you may find someone who spent his youth halfway around the globe.

Are you and your team able to navigate the multicultural workplace with little difficulty, or do you sometimes struggle to understand why others think and act in ways different from your own? The simple fact is, unlike the workplace of previous decades, people’s norms and expectations are more varied than ever. 

Cultural Intelligence: Working Smarter in a Global Economy is an introductory cross-cultural training course designed to help participants understand how culture impacts behavior and how they can adapt their actions to realize better communication among colleagues, clients, and customers within a multicultural organization.   

The program covers cultural differences in how people view relationships with others, variations in how different groups interpret what is said and not said, three distinct views of time, and divergent views on such topics as equality among people, roles, and rewards.

Program Objectives

At this program’s conclusion, participants should be able to:

  • Describe what culture is and the common elements all cultures share.
  • Explain why cultural intelligence is important.
  • Identify common communication roadblocks associated with cultural differences.
  • Explain Geert Hofstede’s dimensions of culture.
  • Describe Edward Hall’s work on time.
  • Interpret and adjust communication for people from high-context cultures and low-context cultures.
  • Explain variations in body language and paralanguage.
  • Quickly reference additional information related to cross-cultural communication.

The following outline highlights some of the course’s key learning points. As part of your training program, we will modify content as needed to meet your business objectives. Upon request, we will provide you with a copy of the participant materials prior to the session(s).

Workshop Outline

Easy Math: Norms + Values + Beliefs = Culture

This course begins with a discussion about culture. Participants will describe what culture is, where it comes from, levels of culture, and why studying cross-cultural communication is important. Next, they will discuss the various ways raising an organization’s cultural intelligence can improve the workplace and its bottom line.

Another Dimension: The Work of Geert Hofstede

Our next workshop segment focuses on the work of Dr. Geert Hofstede. His decades of study on cultural differences are a central element in most introductory cross-cultural training programs and an important part of this workshop. During this portion of the course, participants will learn about Hofstede’s research and its impact on how we understand differences in workplace values. Furthermore, the group will discuss how they can practically apply their new knowledge and benefit from their understanding of the findings of this cross-cultural pioneer.

Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?: Chronemics Made Easy

People from some cultures are monochromic, and others are polychromic. In other words, they view and use time differently. When cultures cross and expectations related to time are not met, discord can quickly occur. In this part of the program, participants will discuss differences in how cultures view and use time. They will explore how time-related activities such as waiting, talking, and working are treated by different cultures and where breakdowns most often occur.

I Thought I Saw What You Were Saying: Cross-Cultural Body Language Explained

“He nodded “yes!” How could he have meant no?” Just as there are variations in verbal language, there are differences in how people from different cultures use body language. The meanings behind the use of space and silence, touching, eye contact, and facial expressions are not universal. This portion of the program looks at those elements and how various cultures approach each.

Destination Delta: Putting Lessons into Practice

Without an action plan in place, change as a result of training will most likely not occur. This seminar concludes with an action planning segment. During this part of the workshop, participants will articulate what they’ve learned from training and how they plan to put their newfound knowledge to work once back on the job.
At the conclusion of this cultural intelligence workshop, participants should have a better understanding of cultural diversity and cross-cultural communication.