Intercultural communication is an important part of most businesses. It’s said to give the employees a better understanding of the company and co-workers, help them adapt, and avoid culture shock. It also may help you communicate with business partners and clients from other countries. However, in reality, it may not be that simple.
While every culture is different, the world evolves, and education does, too. People learn much about the country they’re going to and about other nations’ customs and traditions. If you’re employing global talents, they probably will be familiar with your native culture.
However, it doesn’t mean that you don’t need intercultural business communication. Check this article to learn more about this field, and discover why it may still be helpful today. Find out if that’s just an old habit our generation inherited – or if you really need it.
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What Is Intercultural Business Communication?
Intercultural business communication is the communication among people of different cultures, with different values, habits, and beliefs. It is about understanding and accepting the individual and cultural differences and acknowledging them in everyday work life.
Why Should You Invest In Intercultural Business Communication?
In today’s global business environment, intercultural business communication is crucial for your company’s success. Here are the top 3 reasons why you should consider investing in it:
It Gives You an Upper Hand Over Your Competitors
While small businesses may struggle with international expansion, large corporations already know how to bridge the cultural gap between countries. This way, they can enter new markets easily, while startups usually find it difficult to compete with them.
To enter a new market, especially if it is your first time expanding abroad, conduct proper research on a target market – this is the first and most crucial step to begin with. Depending on whether you will cooperate with foreign companies, you might need a mediator for interpretation or translation of documents. In such a case, you might be looking for professional translation services in Birmingham.
To sustain your market position, you need to understand what makes you stand out from the crowd. That’s where intercultural business communication comes in handy – it allows you to build trust with your clients and partners that results in more sales and profit.
Diversity Is Valuable
A wide range of human talents is essential to any successful organization. If you want to succeed at the international level, you need to be open to diversity. Even if your company is full of people from the same culture, it doesn’t mean that it can’t benefit from it.
In fact, even if you have several employees from the same country, you still need to address cultural issues in your workplace. It’s important to explain what’s acceptable and not acceptable in your country and the company. Respect for diversity will help build a strong team and a successful business.
It Makes Your Business More Sustainable
The world is changing quickly, and so are its markets, cultures, and traditions. To maintain a competitive stance in the long run, you need to adapt and evolve. Research shows that companies that are responsive to changes are more sustainable than those that aren’t.
Intercultural business communication is all about evolution. It allows you to adapt faster to the changing environment, develop new strategies to achieve your goals, and stay on top of your competition.
How Can You Invest In Intercultural Business Communication?
Now that we’ve covered why intercultural business communication matters, let’s talk about possible ways to invest in it.
Training is a fundamental part of every successful organization. However, it’s not enough to just train employees on technical skills or soft skills like leadership or management. If you really want to succeed at the international level, you need to develop a whole training program for your workforce.
You need to train them on how to behave in different countries and under various circumstances. It would help if you also educated them about your target country’s laws and regulations and cultural differences (including taboos).
Such training can greatly benefit during negotiations with foreign companies. Sometimes specific gestures are not accepted, or a handshake is an affirmed and legal way of finishing the deal. Be aware of those in advance.
Don’t forget about language courses – they will help your employees communicate with clients better and prevent miscommunications.
As you can see, there are many advantages of intercultural business communication, and it requires some training before you can freely reach out to foreign companies and start doing business. Otherwise, you might ruin your reputation irreversibly.
Always be prepared to face unexpected situations, draw up a business plan with your strengths and weaknesses in the new market and rely on your trained personnel to support you on your journey.