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Cultural Communication Strategies

Some cultures prize equality amongst workers, while others hold management roles as valued above all else, even calling management by their titles instead of their names, i.e., Mr. Director, Mrs. Vice President. Sweden prefer equality, France treasures management roles, Germany has a balance between equality and authority using titles as names, yet being paid similar to the individual contributor. In most of Asia, including the middle east, woman should not be looked directly in the eye, in some countries opposite genders are forbidden to speak with each other unless they are related.

Decision-making can be an arduous task when consensus is the norm. Add the complexity of culture and it seems astounding that decisions occur at all between companies from different cultures.

Consider the complications of negotiating for a multinational company when the cultural aspects are vastly different than your own. In a new discussion post, select one of the following questions and post a complete answer:

If you have had the opportunity to work on a virtual team with members around the globe, share the benefits and the challenges the members faced particularly in the area of communications.

If you have not yet had the benefit of participating on a multinational virtual team, consider what preparation you would make to ensure the success of the team.

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To be successful in such meetings, it is important for one to prepare well before the meeting. This includes conducting research about various countries in which your virtual team members reside, understand their cultural practices, and then craft a communication plan. One also needs to be psychological ready in order to meet the diverse needs of participants.
It is important to "make yourself aware of your own cultural and personal approach to preparation and planning.
 As much as possible, figure out the likely cultural approach to preparation of your counterparts.
 Identify whether you and your culture, or that of your counterpart, place a significant value on preparation or planning in any of the areas described.
 Consider how these different orientations to preparation may influence future negotiations, either positively or negatively.
 Determine what response will be best and most likely to promote cooperation from your counterpart. For example, accepting the other party's protocols can be a way of demonstrating respect or promoting feelings of comfort. Understanding that a culture places high value on the way things is said may create greater tolerance for different ways of communicating." (Moore, 2010)

"In a virtual team, the task itself usually provides the initial motivation to work together across time and space. ...

Solution Summary

This solution provides benefits and challenges of communicating in a virtual team.

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