Communications in the land of cross border business can make or break your business. Buyers and Suppliers should adhere to some etiquette while communication. language is a big barrier in world of languages.
The world is a big place, but when it comes to conducting business online, distance is no longer an issue. But art of communicating and gestures is a big issue.
I would like to mention a gesture, we use in for eating food. Right hand is pointed towards mouth in India. Same is not true in Italian people. It means entirely different thing. Presuming, business can be done with your gestures and broken language can actually do more harm than goo.
While a company’s physical location may no longer matter, linguistic and cultural differences can still put up barriers that hinder a company’s success.Â So, it’s essential for both business owners and their employees to have a well-honed ability to communicate with a variety of people from a range of backgrounds.
For some people, communication of this type comes naturally. But even if you find it difficult to get your message across effectively, there are a number of skills that can be easily learned to help you improve your cross-cultural interactions. Here are our top tips:
1.Â Do lot of research in advance
Preparation is always important before a business meeting or conference call and this is certainly true when it comes to conversations that span different cultures. So, be sure to do some research in advance to help you get ready. For example, find out about greetings customs, how people tend to negotiate and how to show respect. In addition, if you will be eating together, be aware of dining etiquette.
2.Â Are you speaking the same language? Think again!
Language is a funny thing, and even those who speak the same language can sometimes have difficulties understanding each other, either due to different accents or regional differences in vocabulary. An example that you may already be familiar with is the differences between American English and British English, but it’s an issue that exists around the globe.
There are 6,909 languages in the world (Published by SIL International). Bible is converted into 2,508 different languages. We havenâ€™t mentioned about the dialects yet.
3. Imitating other culture how they speak.
This is the common mistake made by all the suppliers. At Suvarnabhoomi Pty Ltd, we have noticed most of the suppliers try to imitate chinese or indian way of speak. They presume speaking in broken language might get them in good books. Think again, you are not here to imitate and be children. Please do speak in colloquial language, slowly same way as you speak to your ethinic origin. By speaking in broken language you are insulting and telling the other person, he or she is not capable of speaking their language.
Be appreciative they are able and trying to communicate in your language and they are not
4.Â Don’t play the compare/contrast game
When dealing with people from another culture, it can be easy to slip into the habit of comparing and contrasting the different ways the cultures do things. Even if you’re doing this simply out of interest, pointing out the dissimilarities can be counter-productive at best. At worst, it could annoy or anger the people with whom you’re trying to foster a good relationship.
5.Â If needed, get a translator
It might seem like an unnecessary expense, but the services provided by a translator can far exceed the actual cost. After all, with one of these valuable professionals at your side, you’ll be able to better understand what is happening and ensure everyone is on the same page in terms of business agreements or negotiations.
If you have a prepared speech, let your interpreter read it beforehand. The interpreter can then ask you for clarification of industry-specific expressions in advance of your talk. For the same reason, provide interpreters with your product brochures and company profile ahead of time.
6. Some tips to be more effective communicator.
A little use of the local language can go a long way. If your ability to converse in the local language is limitedâ€”or as is more often the case, non-existentâ€”you can still learn a few words of greeting. This simple act can help promote smooth relationships, demonstrating your willingness to learn about their culture. Just be sure to practice your pronunciation ahead of time.
Author :Â Hari Yellina is CEO of Suvarnabhoomi Pty LtD Â who create wealth for their clients through independent, unbiased property & business advice and advocacy. He has been voted Australia’s leading export business adviser and his opinions are regularly featured in the media