Archive for November, 2011

The Latest! Cultural Clues: Do’s & Taboos A series of cultural tips for countries from A to Z Communication Guidelines for Canada

Posted on November 22, 2011 by Leave a comment

Punctuality should always be a priority. Be on time for all business-related meetings.

Remember that people in many countries write the day first, then the month, then the year (e.g. November 8, 2001, is written 8.11.01). This is usually the case in Canada.

Canada is officially bilingual. The federal government works in the two official languages – English and French.

Canadians who are primarily English-speaking are commonly referred to as “Anglophones.” Since many English-speaking Canadians are not of British descent, reserve the term “British Canadian” for immigrants to Canada from the U.K.

English speaking Canada uses British spelling rules rather than that of US English. Behavior, for instance, is spelled ‘Behavior’.

Francophones in French Speaking Canada (Quebec and parts of eastern Canada) usually are not as reserved as Anglophones (British Columbia and parts of western Canada). Moreover, they are often more likely to use expansive gestures, stand closer while talking and touch during a conversation.

In the province of Quebec, there are very stringent French-language requirements for all commercial endeavors. Ensure that you provide a French translation for promotional material and other documents.

Generally, it’s an asset to include both French and English translations on your business card.

Canada is a multicultural society, and the customs of businesspeople may reflect their ethnic background.

If you need to point, use the index finger. Pointing at other people, however, is often considered rude.

Canada is a very open society, exercising maximum social tolerance. Boasting and ostentation, however, tends to be frowned upon or at least regarded with some misgivings.

Although they are not overtly nationalistic “flag wavers”, Canadians usually hope that visitors will recognize and appreciate the many unique attributes that make their country distinct from the United States.

Welcome Topics of Conversation

  • Positive comments about Canada and Canadians, both French speaking and English speaking.
  • Sports are an excellent topic. Popular sports include hockey, football, baseball, basketball, golf, and tennis
  • International Business. Canada has very diverse cultures and trade.
  • The beautiful geography. Canada is an extraordinarily beautiful country with mountains, rivers, lakes and fabulous formal gardens. There is an old European style to the architecture, English on the west coast and French on the east coast.
  • Travel of all sorts, especially international
  • Shopping and fashion. Canada has excellent shopping in the larger cities, both on the east and west coasts. Many things can be purchased there that are not available in the US, especially in the larger cities.
  • Cultural of all types. The coasts of Canada have remained true to the European appreciation of the Arts.

Conversation to Avoid

  • Making comparisons that emphasizes any inferiority or similarity to the U.S.
  • Quebec separatism or other possible conflicts between French and English Canada.
  • Comparisons between the Canadian and US Health Care Systems or medical insurance.
  • Any inferiority of the Canadian dollar in comparison to the US dollar.
  • Religion in general, although Canada is very tolerant of most religions.

Bon Voyage!

Join me in the future for CHILE

Author: Gayle Cotton, International Keynote Speaker & Cultural Expert

US: 972-370-1300

Contact Gayle to help your business become more successful in today’s Global Business Marketplace. Gayle provides her services globally from locations in the US and Europe.

Knowing the communication styles, business strategies and approaches to multi-cultural etiquette can be the difference between success and failure when working or negotiating internationally. Learn to manage ‘culture shock’ and improve your Multi-Cultural Communication. Gayle can assist with all aspects of international sales and negotiations or business management abroad.


Visit the Circles Of Excellence Blog for additional Cross-Cultural Articles

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

CIRCLES OF EXCELLENCE INC. receives the 2011 US Commerce Association (USCA) ‘Best of Local Business Award’ Training & Development Consultant for Dallas, TX

Posted on November 12, 2011 by Leave a comment

As President of Circles Of Excellence Inc., I am proud to share that we have been selected for the 2011 US Commerce Association (USCA) ‘Best of Local Business Award’ as a Training & Development Company in Dallas, TX.

I want to thank all the people and companies that have supported Circles Of Excellence and contributed to their success in the local community. This award is shared with all of you!

Coming soon this month on my Blog!

Watch for the new Article: Cultural Clues, Do’s & Taboos for CANADA

My Blog:

My Website:

Coming soon this month on the Circles Of Excellence Blog!

Watch for the new Article: Cultural Clues, Do’s & Taboos for IRELAND

Circles Of Excellence Blog:


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Events for Gayle Cotton: November 1, 2011 to November 30, 2011

Posted on November 10, 2011 by Leave a comment

Contact Me for More Information:



I’ll be in Geneva during the TELECOM Convention meeting with customers including Ericsson, Fujitsu, Huawei, QualCom, Verizon, AT&T and Alcatel-Lucent.

Washington DC



I’ll be Washing DC for Cross-Cultural Presentations in the area and also in Baltimore MD.


AMS Pictures

AMS Media

I will be co-producing with Circles Of Excellence for the edit of the DVD series ‘Is What You Say What You Mean? Improving Your Interpersonal Communications’ filmed live for Fujitsu’s International Sales Team. It will be available for online purchase soon!



I am doing a series of articles on ‘Successful Cross-Cultural Business Communications’ for Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO).


Cross-Cultural Communication, Management and Executive Coaching Events for Towers Watson in Dallas, TX


Ecom Trading



Customer Service, Communication, Teambuilding and Executive Coaching Events for Ecom Trading in Dallas, TX

Happy Thanksgiving!

Have a safe and Happy Thanksgiving everyone!