We have been saying for a long time that the web is breaking the borders and making it seamless for people to collaborate globally. Whether we want it or not – globalization is here to stay. If you can’t beat it, best is to make the most out of it. Developing cultural sensitivity is no longer a luxury. It is almost mandatory!
I was fortunate to have lived and worked in five countries and always learnt to be culturally sensitive in a hard way. I finally figured out several things that we important in that place by using the most famous strategy ever “trial and error.” Looking back, I always wished that I had done some homework before venturing into new areas and dealing with people from a different culture. So, the point is – whether you are working in a different country or you are working with people from a different culture or both, you can make it easy (for yourself) by learning to be culture sensitive.
I was embarrassed and didn’t know how to face the other person next time I met him somewhere else.
I have had lots of different kinds of experiences in other countries. Every time I look back and reflect on things, I wish I was more prepared and I would have been more effective with the right preparation.
There is a quick reference book that comes in handy and it’s called “Kiss, Bow or Shake Hands.” Take a look when you have a chance.