More about how we think. In threes. Seven of them:
There are differences between cultures. The differences are in foundational areas. The differences by definition influence collaboration. If these three facts are true, then you as colleagues need to understand the influence of culture on your collaboration.
A Third Explanation
When collaboration doesn’t work we think of two reasons. Colleagues in the other culture are either less capable or less willing. Often we think both. But, there’s a third explanation. Your colleagues are simply different. In how they think. In how they work.
We always address three questions: Where do we differ in how we think, therefore in how we work? What influence do the differences have on our collaboration? How can we get the differences to work for, instead of against, our collaboration?
You engage in three conversations. First, with yourself, as individuals, in self-reflection: “How do I think, therefore act?” Second, with colleagues from the same culture, in co-self-reflection. Third, with colleagues from the other cultures, in cross-border reflection.
As colleagues you interact in three possible relationships. Within the company. With customers. With suppliers. If the company is operating globally, then cultural differences are exerting influence in each one of those relationships.
UC has three pieces: content explaining cultural differences; a Questions space where you as colleagues deepen your understanding of those differences; and an Exercises space to apply what you have learned and discussed to improving collaboration.
Three Good Things
When you as colleagues better understand each other three good things happen. You get the job done. Good for you as professionals. You enjoy your work. Good for you as human beings. You become friends. Good for the relations between your countries.
Back to Thoughts.