The Impact of a Multicultural Workplace


“Yes, it’s true that globalisation has integrated the world. Yet, we are still witnessing communication barriers where the performance of global organizations can be affected”

The technology has permitted companies to open their communicational boundaries and expand their product/services into new markets. Thus, people from different cultural backgrounds are making business together and exchanging information in a frequent basis.

At present, it is imperative for business people to learn cultural diversities in order to avoid pitfalls of communication and successfully introduce, convey and operate their products/services in international markets within and outside the organization. For example, what we should say, cultural taboos, what we should avoid saying and the way we deliver the message has a notable impact within our workplace and obviously, with our clients as well.

Because every message we deliver comes first within the organization, the management of a multicultural workplace has to deal with day-to-day issues such as motivation, training and daily communication whereby the message has to be grasped by everyone in the same way. Any miscomprehension, can delay the productivity or even worse, misinform and misguide clients.

In certain cases, some countries share the same values and ethics, especially in western countries, where ideologies and principles are often similar.That is why some people can adapt easily in some western environments and adopt its culture. Nonetheless, when a company is global and the message is not clearly delivered, assumptions can happen and misunderstandings occur, slowing down the business production.

Unquestionably, the word culture can be analysed in many ways such as nationally, internationally, organizationally and inclusive, by gender. But in business management, is viewed as the way the employees behave and how the organization performs in different marketplaces. Hence, intercultural business communication and international communication has to be the touchstone for those organizations who want to achieve global success.

For instance, face gestures, hand motions or the tone of voice can be perceived and impact differently. As a result, managers find challenging to run a company in a global scale on account of the variety of cultural differences. Therefore, employees should have the skills to adapt themselves in different scenarios which in business is known as cultural intelligence. In simple words, cultural intelligence embraces 4 characteristics that are inherent in cultural business communication:

  • Usage of an appropriate language.
  • Personal space.
  • Cultural awareness.
  • Insight or natural intuition.

Mostly, the best source to learn cross-cultural skills is through traditional media such as newspapers, tv, cinema, etc. However, this ability is enhanced principally by someone who studies or works in a foreign environment due to the fact that the individual will be able to capture unique cultural codes, put them into action when is necessary and optimize them through trail and error. Hence, managers in global companies continuously undergo training in diverse locations so as to maximize their potential and understand multiple markets.

It goes without saying that cultural differences can be found and exist within the business world. However, people are willing to adopt corporate values, as corporations are prepared to mould their strategic communication to fit into international markets. Barriers may appear, but only an effective communication would help companies to jump the wall of cultural differences and boost its output in global markets.


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