Culture and diversity guide

Cross-Cultural Communication

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Cross-Cultural Communication


What we say and how we act, can have a direct result in how people respond to us on an individual and collective basis. The following points should therefore be considered when working with, planning a meeting, or when in the company of people from ethnic minorities.


DO ... be careful about using jargon or slang when speaking to people from minority ethnic groups. What you say may have a different meaning to your listener.


DO ... be careful how you use gestures or body language. Individuals may place different meanings on a gesture you may feel is quite inoffensive.


DO ... be sensitive when using terms of endearment e.g. luv, my dear, etc. What is innocent to you may be unacceptable, or even offensive to others.


DO ... be aware that in some communities, physical contact between people of different sexes is not common and a handshake is not always the custom when greeting people. This is especially so among women. An act of comforting e.g. putting an arm around someone may cause embarrassment or offence.


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