The buzzword ‚intercultural competence‘ is being thrown around a lot these days. Diversity is one of the key concepts in international personnel management. How important is intercultural competence when working abroad in China? How far can intercultural trainings help prepare for foreign assignment?
We asked German managers in China to address these question from their perspective. In November 2011 we asked 27 Germans who gave us their opinion. The results are as follows:
1. How important is intercultural competence in international business?
2. How important is intercultural competence for professional success in China?
4. Can intercultural competence (for China) be learned or improved in seminars, trainings etc.?
5. From your perspective, are Germans or Chinese more culturally adaptable?
The participants of this survey agree that intercultural skills are of central importance when it comes to China and that trainings can be helpful to improve them.
Our experience is that in many cases trainings can indeed be a good start to overcome fears and uncertainty in international communication or before going abroad. Sharing experience within the company is equally important, in most cases it is easier to learn from failures and success of others.
However, the survey is focused on the German perspective. The fact that one third of the participants views Germans as more culturally adaptable might be due to the skewed nationality ratio. It would be interesting to learn the perspective of local Chinese partners and coworkers on the their German colleagues. Another thing that should be examined is the view of Chinese managers in Germany on the cultural adaptability in their host country.
Would you rate some points differently or are you missing important questions? Please join the discussion.
Are you interested in intercultural training for yourself or your employees? We are happy to create trainings for your individual needs. We can also help you build an internal knowledge exchange network to pool your experience abroad. Feel free to contact us with any request: http://www.china-wiki.de//european-companies
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