leadership

How leadership differs across cultures

What makes leaders good in the workplace? That depends on where in the world your workplace is. But one thing is clear: in most situations today, good leaders need to be able to manage across cultures. This means listening to what people are saying and understanding it; reading between the lines, rather than simply reacting. Leadership today requires a high …

Why failure is no fiasco and rather feedback [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Rachel Smets shares her confidence hacks for moving abroad On this episode Rachel Smets, author of “Awaken Your Confidence,” shares her experiences of moving abroad and living in different countries. Born and raised in Belgium, she currently resides in the Netherlands. She left home in her mid-20s and moved to Spain where she landed her first job abroad. Over the years, Rachel has lived in …

Buddha Boy Monk Silence

When silence doesn’t mean the same thing in different cultures

“Speech is silver. Silence is golden” This is a widely-used saying that many people in many countries are familiar with. And silence also has many different meanings in cross-cultural communication. Silence can be used to intimidate; or to save face; to show respect; or it can simply suggest that the other person is relaxed enough in your company to enjoy a …

8 different hellos

How you can improve your foreign language skills – in 15 minutes a day

No global success without sufficient language skills You are working on foreign assignment. You are an expert in your field. Your success at home was one of the main reasons why you are here today – working for your company abroad. Your ability to speak and understand the language of your host country is improving. But you are in another culture …

What do expatriates want?

Take the survey Are you currently an expatriate on a foreign work assignment? Have you lived and worked abroad in the past? Are you considering taking a position overseas? Then this survey is for you! Please take a minute to answer these short questions for expats. This brief questionnaire is designed to help us better understand how people who live …

Mastering a mixed marriage in Indonesia [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Silke Irmscher talks about transitioning from Saxony to Java On this episode Silke Irmscher, founder of Culturenergy, tells her story of how she left Germany and fell in love with Indonesia and, in fact, found love on the island of Java. Silke has been living in Indonesia for more than 15 years and together with her husband, Ri Yanto, she …

Culture is not shocking – unless you want it to be

Are new encounters really shocking – or simply unfamiliar? When preparing people for life and work abroad cultural trainers often address the issue of culture shock. Sometimes this may sound like there will be a wave of negative experiences and emotions crashing on the shores of expat existence. Let’s set the record straight on this: The idea of a shock isn’t …

“Chinese bastards”: What we can learn from Daimler’s cross-cultural incident

When emotions hit a high, intelligence drops to a low Whether we like it or not: Sometimes people lose their temper and act out against others. And it is usually not a pretty picture. When this happens to company leaders on foreign assignment it can create a ripple effect with far greater reach than the untamed emotional release itself. In 2016 a cross-cultural incident …

Why cultural competence is one of seven success factors for ‘glocal’ business

Recently on this blog you found our Table of Elements for Global Business Readiness. It has become quite popular among our clients. And it’s exciting to see that EDGE Business Magazine published a modified version in its January 2017 issue. In their Skill Sets column Christian Höferle explains the importance of cultural competence for sustainable growth for ‘glocal’ businesses. Cultural Competence a KeyGrowth Factor …

What executives, doctors, lawyers, students, teachers, baristas, and goat farmers have in common [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Getting outside of your comfort zone is easier with the tips in Andy Molinsky’s new book, Reach Exactly a year after he first appeared as a guest on The Culture Guy Podcast, Andy Molinsky is back. In this first episode of 2017 Andy talks about his latest book, Reach: A New Strategy to help You Step Outside Your Comfort Zone. Often, …

How lawyers can cross cultures with ease [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Why international attorneys need to learn about intercultural communication Jeri Weber is an attorney-at-law and an intercultural consultant for legal professionals. She was born and raised in the U.S. Midwest, spent time in Asia as an exchange student and has lived and worked in China, Indonesia, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany. On this episode Jeri highlights the fact that most …

How a global traveler discovered the B.A.N.K. code [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Cheri Tree is the founder and CEO of B.A.N.K.code, a company which developed a unique personality-based sales training approach. On this episode she shares the story how her nomad upbringing lead her to crack personality codes. Coming from a U.S. military family, Cheri traveled a lot during her childhood and when she was a student. Now, as an adult, she …

Crack the Cultural Codes of 10 Countries

Many of the readers of this blog and users of our website work across cultures or with teams across borders and cultures on a regular basis – whether you spend your time in the office or out on the road. When you do work with people who are different than you, it is critical to have a rough sense of …

What are you doing with your hands? [The Culture Guy Podcast]

When people communicate they don’t only use their words, they always include parts of their body to convey their message. Depending on where in the world we are from, we use our hands, our heads, and the rest of our bodies differently. You’ll find hundreds of infographics on the internet highlighting how some gestures work in certain cultures but would …

Master these skills to become an efficient global leader

When Andreas Gelder was transferred to the U.S. subsidiary of his company, his responsibilities shifted. At the head offices of his European employer he was a young up-and-comer and a part of a larger team in the finance department. Now he had to master several new roles: he became the head of finance for the Americas – a territory which …

Let’s talk about sex(ism), baby! [The Culture Guy Podcast]

During this episode I’ll be talking about sex. In a clean and mature way. It is still a podcast around the topic of sex – and about sexism. Let me be really clear: sexism will hurt your business. And sometimes you will encounter it coming from angles you weren’t expecting. I recently wrote a piece about this topic on our …

How to build cross-cultural rapport by leaving your food comfort zone [The Culture Guy Podcast]

When he moved within the United States, from Maryland to Arkansas, Michael Spencer realized that some of the stories about the U.S. South are sometimes more than just stereotypes. Or, as he found out, Southerners like their tea sweet. Which meant that rapport building in the Ozarks is different than at the Chesapeake Bay. Then his company offered him an …

When the expat dream turns into a career challenge [The Culture Guy Podcast]

In the past few weeks we have been posting several useful articles on our Facebook Page about life abroad, the challenges of expatriation, raising children overseas with two languages, and repatriating back home after having lived abroad for years. So it is time we let someone who has been through all of these stages share her story. Meet Germany-native Tina …

How Joe Lurie intrigues people through difference [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Joe Lurie, the author of Perception and Deception – A mind-opening journey across cultures, is back for another conversation about bringing people from around the world together. If you missed the first time Joe was a guest on The Culture Guy Podcast, you can listen to the episode in the archives. During this new episode Joe shares with Christian his …

The table of elements for global business readiness

What do expat families need away from home? Which factors make a community a desirable expatriate destination? Our clients trust us and rely on us that we will lead their teams to more success across cultural borders. We are the aspirin to your expat headache. So we researched the most important success factors and compiled them below in the infographic …