Posts tagged with intercultural communication

New Article! Cultural Clues & Communication Guidelines for Yemen

Posted on May 10, 2018 by Leave a comment

The Latest! Cultural Clues, Do’s and Taboos for Yemen – A Series of Cultural Tips for Countries from A to Z

It’s easy for business travelers to think that even when they travel, business is going to be done pretty much the same way it is at home. But that’s not always the case. Cultural differences can have a big impact on global business etiquette. That’s why it’s important for business travelers to make sure that they understand the culture of the country that they’re doing business in.

This article on cultural differences in Yemen and cultural travel tips for Yemen is a brief snapshot of conversation guidelines for Yemen, tips for communicating in Yemen and business strategies for Yemen to help with understanding the culture in Yemen. It’s important to keep in mind that as we homogenize as a ‘global culture’, cultural tendencies change and evolve as well. Awareness is the first step when it comes to cultural do’s and taboos for Yemen and tips for intercultural communication!

Cultural Tips for Yemen – including some valuable business travel tips for Yemen!

The only absolute requirement of dress code in Yemen is modesty. Short sleeves are therefore acceptable but not short trousers.

The female dress code requires covering everything in public, however, a woman can wear literally anything she wants providing she covers herself thoroughly when she goes out.

The host typically sets the subject of conversation, and normally begin with general small talk such as “How are you?”, “Are you enjoying your visit?” etc.

Intelligent argument is admired and welcome, but only when it is courteous and reasoned. The more feedback you generate, no matter how forceful so long as it’s not angry, the more highly you will be esteemed.

Getting down to business can often be quicker than elsewhere in the Middle East, except for in the United Arab Emirates, UAE, where business is very westernized.

As is in other Arab countries, be prepared to tolerate multiple interruptions during conversations.

The standard greeting is “As-salam alaikum,” (“peace be upon you”) to which the standard reply is “Wa alaikum as-salam,” (“and upon you be peace”).

The use of first names denotes more familiarity than in the west and there is no real equivalent to Mr. or Ms. The noble title “Sayyed” refers to a Hashemite (an Arab claiming descent from Hashim, the great-grandfather of Muhammad), and should always be used before the first name.

A level of friendliness, without undue familiarity, is achieved by using the “kunya”. A man becomes known to his friends as “Abu” (father of), usually followed by the name of his eldest son. It is quite acceptable to ask a mutual acquaintance if you don’t know a man’s kunya. Somewhat less common is the female equivalent “Umm” (mother of).

The titles Doctor, Mohandas (engineer), Ustadh (professor), and Shaikh (chief) are used as honorable titles. “Shaikh” is similar in concept to knighthood in British English, and is used before the first name not the surname.

On arrival at a reception room, the visitor should stand in the doorway and utter the former of these phrases. After receiving the reply, the visitor is entitled to enter the reception room for further greetings and introductions.

If the room is carpeted, remove your shoes and leave them outside to avoid bringing in impurities that would leave the carpet ritually unclean for prayer.

Once inside the room, shake hands with the most senior person first, usually but not always the host. Proceed to make your way around the room in a counter-clockwise direction, shaking hands with each person before taking your seat or joining in the conversation.

If there is a very large number of people in the room, or if the seating is inconvenient, there may be consensus permission to merely shake hands with the host and wave a greeting to the others.

It is best not to change the subject of a conversation except by logical opportunity or invitation, even though the Yemenis will feel free to do this themselves.

English is widely spoken enough not to require a knowledge of Arabic for general day-to-day purposes.

Business cards are common but not essential in Yemen. If used, the common practice is to have English and Arabic printed on either side. Brochures and other promotional literature should be printed in Arabic, either with or without English translation.

If seated, crossing your legs is acceptable, provided you don’t direct the sole of your foot to an individual, which is the “go away” gesture.

In business meetings, conversation should be communal. Don’t have a long private chat with an individual because more than one conversation in the room is thought to spoil the atmosphere.

Yemenis are very shrewd in business, so the details of any agreement should be detailed meticulously. The concept of commitment may differ from yours, and such terms as “immediate”, “prompt”, “on demand” or “soon” are particularly susceptible to disputed interpretation.

Hospitality is important throughout the Middle East, but in Yemen it is a requirement and must be accepted when offered. Being invited to lunch anywhere in Yemen is the promise of a feast. The food is both varied and distinctive, however, be aware that the southern cuisine is substantially spicier than the northern.

5 Key Conversation Topics or Cultural Gesture Tips

  • Maintaining eye contact is an important way of showing attentiveness in Yemen.
  • Everything offered to anyone should be offered with and taken by only the right hand.
  • Be open to standing closer, more body language, and touching between the same sex.
  • Be prepared for many interruptions by the Yemenis during conversations,
  • Restaurants and the varied, distinctive food are always appreciated topics of discussion.

 

5 Key Conversation Topics or Cultural Gesture Taboos

  • Nothing should be offered with the left hand which is considered unclean.
  • When seated, don’t point the sole of your foot to anyone, because this is a “go away” gesture.
  • In general, let your host guide the conversation and don’t change the topic unless invited to do so.
  • Don’t ask personal questions or discuss a person’s private life unless they bring it up first.
  • Don’t back away from Yemenis when they stand close to you or touch your arm or clothing during discussions.

Bon Voyage!

Join us in the future for Do’s and Taboos for Argentina!

To learn more about the Dos and Taboos for different cultures, and the cultural communication styles for Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East – order Gayle Cotton’s bestselling book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’ available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book

Watch the ‘Say Anything-5 Keys’ Video

Create Rapport and Organize Strategies for Success

The CROSS of Cross-Cultural

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training.

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

Gayle’s DVD: Speaker preview for Gayle Cotton

Circles Of Excellence Website: www.circlesofexcellence.com

Circles Of Excellence Blog: www.circlesofexcellence.com/blog

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New Article! Cultural Clues & Communication Guidelines for Venezuela

Posted on April 5, 2018 by Leave a comment

The Latest! Cultural Clues, Do’s and Taboos for Venezuela – A Series of Cultural Tips for Countries from A to Z

It’s easy for business travelers to think that even when they travel, business is going to be done pretty much the same way it is at home. But that’s not always the case. Cultural differences can have a big impact on global business etiquette. That’s why it’s important for business travelers to make sure that they understand the culture of the country that they’re doing business in.

The interview on cultural differences in Venezuela and cultural travel tips for Venezuela is a brief snapshot of conversation guidelines for Venezuela, tips for communicating in Venezuela and business strategies for Venezuela to help with understanding the culture in Venezuela. It’s important to keep in mind that as we homogenize as a ‘global culture’, cultural tendencies change and evolve as well. Awareness is the first step when it comes to cultural do’s and taboos for Venezuela and tips for intercultural communication!

Cultural Tips for Venezuela – including some valuable business travel tips for Venezuela!

In Venezuela, punctuality is expected. Traffic congestion, especially in Caracas, can be difficult, so make sure you have plenty of time to get to your appointment.

A firm, assured, handshake is the customary greeting on all occasions. During the handshake, state your full name and the Venezuelan will reciprocate by doing the same.

Once you establish a closer acquaintance, you may receive an “abrazo”, an embrace which involves a squeeze of the arm, and sometimes even a kiss on the cheek.

Venezuelans tend to stand close to others. Respect this practice and accept that it is the cultural norm. Attempting to move away may be perceived as a rejection.

Business cards are important in establishing working relationships in this culture, so bring a plentiful supply and have them ready when first meeting others. Business cards should be treated with care and respect.

It’s best if documents, letters, promotional literature, and presentation materials are translated into Spanish. However, if you receive a reply from a Venezuelan in English you may begin using English in all correspondence.

In the Venezuelan business culture, preliminary conversation or “small talk” is considered necessary before each meeting, since it allows the participants to become personally acquainted. Follow their lead in establishing rapport.

An important part of developing a business relationship with your Venezuelan contact involves dining at a restaurant. Business dinners are usually social occasions, so refrain from discussing work-related matters unless your Venezuelan contact brings up the subject.

If you are hosting a meal at a restaurant, it’s a good idea to pay the bill in advance. This guideline is especially important if you are a woman, since your male guests may resist allowing you to pick up the tab.

If you are invited to a Venezuelan’s home, consider it an honor, and it’s best to bring a gift. Orchids, the national flower, is a popular and an easily available floral gift.

Businesspeople from older generations often place a greater emphasis on getting to know you personally. Conversely, the younger generations are chiefly preoccupied with business concerns.

In Venezuelan business culture, interpersonal skills and maintaining cordial relations with the group, are often considered more important than professional competence and experience.

Avoid monopolizing a conversation, it’s best to allow your Venezuelan companions to initially take the lead.

During a conversation, it’s not uncommon for Venezuelans to sometimes touch each other’s arms or jacket.

In both the government and private sectors, Venezuelan women hold positions of rank and authority, so you’ll find that Venezuelan men will be accustomed to dealing with businesswomen.

A business deal made in Venezuela should focus mainly on long-term goals, rather than immediate gains.

The Venezuelan educational system emphasizes processing information subjectively and associatively. In problem solving, becoming personally involved is often considered more important than seeking guidance from a specific set or laws or rules.

In the Venezuelan business culture, an individual takes full responsibility for his or her decisions and how they affect the group or family structure.

The pace of negotiations is generally slower in Venezuela than in the United States.

During negotiations, wait until final agreements are reached before discussing getting attorneys involved.

Business gifts are appreciated if you have been invited to dinner or when someone has done something thoughtful for you. It’s best to give them after business hours. Some good gifts include fine chocolates, a desk accessory with your company name and logo, or a small electronic.

5 Key Conversation Topics or Cultural Gesture Tips

  • Maintaining eye contact is an important way of signaling attentiveness in this culture.
  • Point with your entire hand, rather than just your index finger which is considered impolite
  • Good topics to discuss are the positive aspects of Venezuela, particularly what you like most about the country.
  • Sports, especially baseball and soccer.
  • Restaurants and food are always good topics of discussion.

 

5 Key Conversation Topics or Cultural Gesture Taboos

  • Venezuelans look down upon eating and walking at the same time.
  • Avoid discussing Venezuelan politic or religion.
  • In general, it’s best not to bring up the influence the United States has on South America.
  • Don’t ask personal questions or discuss a person’s private life unless they bring it up first.
  • Don’t back away from Venezuelans when they stand close to you or pull away if they touch your arm or clothing during discussions.

Bon Voyage!

Join us in the future for Do’s and Taboos for YEMEN!

To learn more about the Dos and Taboos for different cultures, and the cultural communication styles for Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East – order Gayle Cotton’s bestselling book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’ available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book

Watch the ‘Say Anything-5 Keys’ Video

Create Rapport and Organize Strategies for Success

The CROSS of Cross-Cultural

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

Gayle’s DVD: Speaker preview for Gayle Cotton

Circles Of Excellence Website: www.circlesofexcellence.com

Circles Of Excellence Blog: www.circlesofexcellence.com/blog

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It’s Chinese New Year and 2018 is the Year of the DOG!

Posted on February 15, 2018 by Leave a comment

It’s Your Year DOGS and the keyword for Dogs is Action!

This year the Chinese New Year begins on February 16, 2018 and ends on the on the Lunar New Year February 4, 2019. The Dog occupies the 11th position in the 12-year cycle of Chinese zodiac. You are a Dog if you are born in one of these years: 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018.

Postponing is a word you can remove from your vocabulary. The Chinese Horoscope of 2018 predicts that the year of the Brown Earth Dog is going to be a good year in all respects, but it could also be an exhausting year. You might be happy, then frustrated, full of energy, and then tired!

Refreshed and regenerated, the Dog will accelerate the initiation of all things, but this could also bring pressure and stress in everyday life.

According to Chinese astrology, 2018 is a very good year regarding the financial aspects, but there could also be some health challenges. In the year of the dog, all zodiac signs should pay attention to their health. Year 2018 is a good time to start eating healthy, exercising, and getting rid of bad habits.

Hundreds of millions of people across China have been celebrating the arrival of the New Year, also known as the Lunar New Year or the Spring Festival – the literal translation of the modern Chinese name. People from all over the world travel to China to celebrate, and it’s considered the largest annual migration on a global scale. It’s celebrated at the turn of the Chinese calendar, and is the longest festival of the year. It traditionally runs from Chinese New Year’s Eve on the last day of the last month of the Chinese calendar to the Lantern Festival on the 15th day of the first month. The first day of the New Year falls between January 21 and February 20.

Regional customs for the celebration of the Chinese New Year vary. Usually, it’s a time for Chinese families to gather for the annual reunion dinner. It is also tradition for every family to thoroughly clean the house to sweep away bad luck and make way for good luck in the coming year. Homes are decorated in red with themes representing “wealth” and “longevity”. There are fireworks, dragons, lion dances, money given away in red envelopes and more!

To learn more about the Dos and Taboos for different cultures, and the cultural communication styles for Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East – order Gayle Cotton’s bestselling book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’ available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book

Watch the ‘Say Anything-5 Keys’ Video

Create Rapport and Organize Strategies for Success

The CROSS of Cross-Cultural

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training.

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

Gayle’s DVD: Speaker preview for Gayle Cotton

Circles Of Excellence Website: www.circlesofexcellence.com

Circles Of Excellence Blog: www.circlesofexcellence.com/blog

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Say Happy New Year in Different Languages from Around the World!

Posted on December 28, 2017 by Leave a comment

 

Afgani Saale Nao Mubbarak
Afrikaans Gelukkige nuwe jaar
Albanian Gezuar Vitin e Ri
Armenian Snorhavor Nor Tari
Arabic Kul ‘am wa antum bikhair
Assyrian Sheta Brikhta
Azeri Yeni Iliniz Mubarek!
Balochi Noki saal mubarrak bibi
Bengali Shuvo Nabo Barsho
Breton [Celtic Brythonic language] Bloavezh Mat
Bulgarian ×åñòèòà Íîâà Ãîäèíà (pronounced “Chestita Nova Godina”)
Cambodian Soursdey Chhnam Tmei
Catalan FELIÇ ANY NOU
Chakma Nuo bazzor bekkunore
Chinese Xin Nian Kuai Le
Corsican Language Pace e Salute
Croatian Sretna Nova godina!
Cymraeg (Welsh) Blwyddyn Newydd Dda
Czech Šťastný Nový rok (or Stastny Novy rok)
Denish Godt Nytår
Dhivehi Ufaaveri Aa Aharakah Edhen
Dutch GELUKKIG NIEUWJAAR!
Eskimo Kiortame pivdluaritlo
Esperanto Felican Novan Jaron
Estonians Head uut aastat!
Ethiopian: MELKAM ADDIS AMET YIHUNELIWO!
Ethiopian/Eritrean Tigrigna RUHUS HADUSH AMET
Finnish Onnellista Uutta Vuotta
French Bonne Annee
Gaelic Bliadhna mhath ur
Galician [NorthWestern Spain] Bo Nadal e Feliz Aninovo
German Prosit Neujahr
Georgian GILOTSAVT AKHAL TSELS!
Greek Kenourios Chronos
Gujarati Nutan Varshbhinandan
Hawaiian Hauoli Makahiki Hou
Hebrew L’Shannah Tovah
Hindi Naye Varsha Ki Shubhkamanyen
Hong kong (Cantonese) Sun Leen Fai Lok
Hungarian Boldog Új Évet Kivánok
Indonesian Selamat Tahun Baru
Iranian Sal -e- no mobarak
Iraqi Sanah Jadidah
Irish Bliain nua fe mhaise dhuit
Italian: Felice anno nuovo

For More Ways to Say Happy New Year – Check Out the

Circles Of Excellence Blog!

To learn more about the Dos and Taboos for different cultures, and the cultural communication styles for Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East – order Gayle Cotton’s bestselling book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’ available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book

Watch the ‘Say Anything-5 Keys’ Video

Create Rapport and Organize Strategies for Success

The CROSS of Cross-Cultural

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training.

Circles Of Excellence Website: www.circlesofexcellence.com

Circles Of Excellence Blog: www.circlesofexcellence.com/blog

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

Gayle’s DVD: Speaker preview for Gayle Cotton

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New Year Traditions Around the World from New York to Japan!

Posted on December 21, 2017 by Leave a comment

New Year Traditions Around the World from New York to Japan!

  • Times Square Celebrations The first Ball Lowering celebration atop One Times Square was held on December 31, 1907 and is now a worldwide symbol of the turn of the New Year, seen via satellite by more than one billion people each year. The original New Year’s Eve Ball weighed 700 pounds and was 5 feet in diameter. It was made of iron and wood and was decorated with 100 25-watt light bulbs.
  • It was thought that one could affect the luck they would have throughout the coming year by what they did or ate on the first day of the year. It is still held in some regions that special New Year foods are the harbingers of luck. For that reason, the Dutch believe that eating donuts on New Year’s Day will bring good fortune. The hog, and its meat, is considered lucky because it symbolizes prosperity. Cabbage is another “good luck” vegetable that is consumed on New Year’s Day by many. Cabbage leaves are also considered a sign of prosperity, being representative of paper currency. In some regions, rice is a lucky food that is eaten on New Year’s Day. The ancient Persians gave New Year’s gifts of eggs, which symbolized productiveness.
  • Black-eyed peas Many parts of the U.S. have a new year tradition of consuming black-eyed peas. These legumes are typically accompanied by either hog jowls or ham. Black-eyed peas and other legumes have been considered good luck in many cultures.
  • New Year Rings Many cultures believe that anything in the shape of a ring is good luck, because it symbolizes “coming full circle,” completing a year’s cycle.
  • Wearing new slippers For the new year in China, many people wear in the new year a new pair of slippers that is bought before the new year, because it means to step on the people who gossip about you.
  • Sealed doors & windows During the Chinese New Year the doors and windows of every home in china can be seen sealed with paper. The Chinese think that this will succeed in keep the evil demons out.
  • Jewish New Year The Jewish New Year is called Rosh Hashanah. It is a holy time when Jews recall the things they have done wrong in the past, and then promise to do better in the future. Special services are held in the synagogues, children are given new clothes and New Year loaves are baked to remind people of harvest time.
  • American Resolutions 40 to 45% of American adults make one or more New Year’s resolutions each year. And these range from debt reduction to giving up bad habits to what not? But the ones that are the most common deal with weight loss to exercise to giving up smoking.
  • Japanese New Year On New Year’s Day in Japan, everyone gets dressed in their new clothes. Homes are decorated with pine branches and bamboo, both of which are considered to be the symbols of long life.

For more New Year’s Traditions – Check Out the

Circles Of Excellence Blog!

To learn more about the Dos and Taboos for different cultures, and the cultural communication styles for Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East – order Gayle Cotton’s bestselling book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’ available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book

Watch the ‘Say Anything-5 Keys’ Video

Create Rapport and Organize Strategies for Success

The CROSS of Cross-Cultural

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training.

Circles Of Excellence Website: www.circlesofexcellence.com

Circles Of Excellence Blog: www.circlesofexcellence.com/blog

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

Gayle’s DVD: Speaker preview for Gayle Cotton

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Say Happy Holidays in Languages from Around the World!

Posted on December 14, 2017 by Leave a comment

Say Happy Holidays in Languages from Around the World!

Happy Holidays in Argentine – Felices Pasquas Y felices ano Nuevo

Happy Holidays in Brazilian – Boas Festas e Feliz Ano Novo

Happy Holidays in French: Joyeuses Fêtes!

Happy Holidays in Spanish: Felices Fiestas!

Happy Holidays in Swedish: Trevlig Helg!

Happy Holidays in Portuguese: Boas Festas!

Happy Holidays in Turkish: Mutlu Bayramlar!

Happy Holidays in Romanian: Sarbatori Fericite!

Happy Holidays in Mandarin: Jie Ri Yu Kuai

Happy Holidays in Catalan: Bones Festes!

Happy Holidays in Japanese: Shiawasena kyūjitsu

Happy Holidays in Italian: Buone Feste!

Happy Holidays in South African (Xhose): Ii holide eximnandi

Happy Holidays in German: Forhe Feiertage

Happy Holidays in Dutch: Prettige feestdagen

Happy Holidays in Hawaiian: Hau’oli Lanui

Happy Holidays in Gaelic: Beannachtaí na Féile

Happy Holidays in Slovenian: Vesele Praznike

Happy Holiday in Indonesian: Selamat Hari Raya!

Happy Holidays in Croatian: Sretni praznici! 

For More Ways to Say Happy Holidays – Check Out the

Circles Of Excellence Blog!

To learn more about the Dos and Taboos for different cultures, and the cultural communication styles for Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East – order Gayle Cotton’s bestselling book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’ available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book

Watch the ‘Say Anything-5 Keys’ Video

Create Rapport and Organize Strategies for Success

The CROSS of Cross-Cultural

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training.

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

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Check Out the Different Global Thanksgiving Celebrations!

Posted on November 16, 2017 by Leave a comment

Thanksgiving isn’t exclusive to the U.S. or to just to one day a year, it’s something that is celebrated all around in the world!

U.S. Thanksgiving

Celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November, originated in the fall of 1621, when Pilgrims celebrated their first successful wheat crop. The holiday has since evolved into a day in which bickering families and drunken friends gather to consume massive amounts of turkey, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie, before lounging for hours in front of the TV or battling strangers during midnight Black Friday sales. But while all that revelry seems uniquely American, we are not the only culture to celebrate a bountiful harvest. Here, a look at other agriculturally-based festivals around the world:

Canadian Thanksgiving Our neighbors to the north celebrated Thanksgiving before Pilgrims even landed in Plymouth, Mass. When the explorer, Martin Fropsbisher, arrived in Newfoundland, Canada in 1578 he celebrated with a small feast to give thanks for his safe arrival to the New World, an event that is now commemorated by contemporary Canadians on the second Monday of October. The earlier date is because Canada’s Thanksgiving is more aligned with European harvest festivals, which traditionally occur in October. In addition, Canada is farther north, which means its harvest season ends earlier than America’s. But, besides the date, the celebrations are largely the same with families gathering around tables piled high with turkey, stuffing, and pies.

China’s Mid-Autumn Moon Festival Like the American Thanksgiving, China’s Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is a time for family and loved ones to celebrate the end of the harvest season with a giant feast. It is one of the most celebrated Chinese holidays, and is held on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month, around September or October on the Gregorian calendar. According to legend, the moon is at its brightest and roundest on this day, and may inspire rekindled friendship or romance. The festival’s traditional food is the mooncake, a flaky pastry stuffed with either sweet or savory filling.

South Korea’s Chuseok This day of thanks in late September and early October is one of South Korea’s three major holidays. It’s a time for families to share food and stories, and pay respects to their ancestors. Along with a sprawling feast made from the fresh harvest, the main traditional dish is Songpyeon — glutinous rice kneaded into little cakes and filled with red beans, chestnuts, or other ingredients. The feast is laid out in honor of the deceased, and the family can dig into the tasty bounty only after a memorial service and, usually, a trip to the graveyard. But the three-day celebration isn’t just about food and death. Other organized activities include dancing, wrestling, and dressing in traditional costumes.

Liberian Thanksgiving The Liberian Thanksgiving takes its inspiration directly from the American version, which isn’t surprising given that Liberia was founded in the 19th century by freed slaves from the U.S. They brought with them many of the customs they learned in the New World, including Thanksgiving, though they eat mashed cassavas instead of mashed potatoes, and jazz up their poultry with a little spice. The Liberian Thanksgiving is celebrated on the first Thursday in November.

Ghana’s Homowo Festival This yam harvest celebration in Accra, a coastal region of Ghana, is meant to commemorate a period of famine in the Ga people’s history. The word “homowo” means “hooted at hunger” which is what their ancestors did in the face of famine, before getting to work cultivating the land for food. Today, the festival occurs around harvest time between May and August. During the harvest, women dig up the yams, the country’s staple crop, saving the best for the festival dinner. The yams and food are blessed by local chiefs, and the celebration ends with a giant feast that is often complemented by dancing, singing, and drum-playing.

The Jewish Feast of the Tabernacles Sukkot is the third of the Jewish pilgrimage festivals, following Passover and Shavuot. All three-mark different stages of the harvest, with Sukkot signifying its end. It is traditionally celebrated outside the home in makeshift huts, a symbolic reminder of the temporary dwellings Israelites inhabited during their journey across the desert

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training.

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

Gayle’s DVD: Speaker preview for Gayle Cotton

Circles Of Excellence Website: www.circlesofexcellence.com

Circles Of Excellence Blog: www.circlesofexcellence.com/blog

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How Halloween Started? It’s All in the Stars Not the Moon!

Posted on October 26, 2017 by Leave a comment

Theories about how Halloween started? Look at the stars not the moon! http://bit.ly/rrRXBd

In the British Isles, the ancient Druids and Kelts believed that the when Pleiades reached the highest point in the sky around October 31st at 12:00 am, the spirits of the Dead roamed the Earth. That night came to be known as #Halloween.

When the Greeks saw Orion in October sky, they believed that there were 7 maidens or sisters that were being pursued by Orion, so Zeus saved them by turning them into stars!

The Kyle Indians of North America believed that 7 maidens were attacked by a bear, so they stood on a rock which grew into Devil’s Tower Wyoming (as seen in Close Encounters of the 3rd Kind). Ultimately, they became the stars in the sky that were

So, it’s not just about ghosts, bats and witches!

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training.

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

Gayle’s DVD: Speaker preview for Gayle Cotton

Circles Of Excellence Website: www.circlesofexcellence.com

Circles Of Excellence Blog: www.circlesofexcellence.com/blog

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New Article! Cultural Clues & Communication Guidelines for the United States of America (USA)

Posted on August 30, 2017 by Leave a comment

The Latest! Cultural Clues, Do’s and Taboos for the United States of America (USA) – A Series of Cultural Tips for Countries from A to Z

It’s easy for business travelers to think that even when they travel, business is going to be done pretty much the same way it is at home. But that’s not always the case. Cultural differences can have a big impact on global business etiquette. That’s why it’s important for business travelers to make sure that they understand the culture of the country that they’re doing business in.

This article on cultural travel tips for the USA is a brief snapshot of conversation guidelines for the USA, tips for communicating in the USA and business strategies for the USA to help with understanding the culture in the USA. It’s important to keep in mind that as we homogenize as a ‘global culture’, cultural tendencies change and evolve as well. Awareness is the first step when it comes to cultural do’s and taboos for the USA and tips for intercultural communication!

Cultural Tips for the USA – including some valuable business travel tips for the USA!

In the USA, you will find that most Americans speak only English, unless they are immigrants from other countries. They write the month first, then the day, then the year (i.e., December 5, 2001 is written 12/5/01).

Punctuality is considered very important, especially for business occasions. In many U.S. cities, traffic can cause considerable delays, so be sure to allow enough driving time to your appointment. If you know that you will be late, call to let your contact know.

A handshake is the customary greeting for both men and women socially or for business. Apart from greeting close family members or friends, Americans tend to refrain from greetings that involve hugging and close physical contact.

Business cards will not be refused, but you may not always receive one in return. Don’t be offended, in the U.S., the rituals involved in exchanging business cards are sometimes not observed as closely as in other cultures.

The recipient of your card will probably place it into a wallet, which a man may put in the back pocket of his pants. This gesture is done for convenience, and is not meant to be a sign of disrespect, as it might be in other cultures.

The standard space between you and your conversation partner should be about two feet. Most U.S. executives will be uncomfortable standing at a closer distance. Direct eye contact conveys that you are sincere, although it should not be too intense. Certain ethnic groups will look away to show respect.

Americans will often ask, “How are you?” as part of the standard greeting “Hello”, or “Hi”. It is not a question that requires a lengthy answer, a simple “Fine and you?” is sufficient.

Americans like to laugh and enjoy being with people who have a sense of humor. Jokes are usually welcome, however avoid race, gender, ethnic and religious humor. They also tend to dislike long periods of silence, so they may jump in to fill in the silence in a conversation with humor or a general statement.

Traditional sex roles are changing rapidly, but women are still striving for equality in pay and positions of authority.

Sports are very popular in the U.S., especially baseball, football (not to be confused with soccer), and basketball. Sport analogies have found their way into business, so you will often hear things like “that was a home run” or “that’s out in left field”, which can be confusing to those unfamiliar with the terms!

Most business is conducted on a “first name” basis, however there are exceptions so follow the lead of others. When sitting, Americans can look very relaxed. Men may sit with the ankle of one leg on their knee or prop their feet up on chairs or desks. However, in formal business situations it’s best to maintain a good posture and be less casual.

In the U.S., business is often conducted at a very fast pace. In a meeting, the participants will proceed with business after some brief, preliminary “small talk.” The concept “time is money” is taken seriously in U.S. business culture, so always get to the point. It’s not uncommon for them to try to get an oral agreement at the first meeting.

Many Americans believe that their country is the most successful economic and democratic power, and assume that American ways are the “correct” ones. This attitude sometimes leads to a lack of interest in or knowledge of other cultures.

They typically know little of concepts such as “saving face” and the social niceties and formalities that are vitally important to other cultures. Innovation usually takes precedence over tradition.

The United States is an ethnocentric culture, and so it is sometimes closed to “outside” information. Thinking tends to be analytical, and concepts are abstracted quickly.

Americans tend to be future oriented. Money is a key priority, and an issue that will be used to win most arguments. They don’t always realize that businesspeople from many other cultures rarely, if ever, sacrifice status, protocol, or national honor for financial gain.

In negotiations, Americans will often emphasize their financial strength or indomitable position. Generally, they will use a majority vote if they have it, and will not spend much time seeking consensus.

They regard negotiating as problem-solving through “give and take” based on respective strengths. They often are unaware that the other side may have only one position.

American businesspeople are opportunistic and willing to take chances. Opportunism and risk taking often result in Americans going for the biggest possible slice of the business. Even so, they will have a financial plan which must be followed.

Businesspeople can be very blunt and will not hesitate to disagree with you. This approach may cause embarrassment to business travelers who are unaccustomed to dealing with Americans. In general, people from the U.S. will not hesitate to answer “no.”

Persistence is a characteristic you will frequently encounter in American business. There is a prevailing belief that there is always a solution, so they will explore all options when negotiations are at an impasse.

5 Key Conversation Topics or Cultural Gesture Tips

  • General questions such as “How are you” or “What do you do?” are often used.
  • Topics around someone’s job or work-related matters are good for general discussion. Travel, music, food, movies, and books are topics appreciated by everyone.
  • All types of sports, and especially golf for business venues and negotiations, are welcome topics of conversation.
  • To show approval, there are two common gestures: the “O.K.” sign, formed by making a circle of the thumb and index finger, and the “thumbs up” sign, formed by making a fist and pointing the thumb upward. The backslap should be interpreted as a sign of friendship and camaraderie.
  • To beckon someone, wave either all the fingers or just the index finger in a scooping motion, with the palm facing up. To wave goodbye, move your entire hand, with the palm facing outward.

5 Key Conversation Topics or Cultural Gesture Taboos

  • Until you know a person well, avoid discussing religion, politics or other controversial subjects (abortion, racism, sexism etc.). Also avoid all race, gender, ethnic or religious jokes.
  • For the most part, Americans aren’t prone to touching, hugging, or kissing when greeting, or during business conversations and social situations.
  • While it’s common to point with the index finger, it’s impolite to point at another person.
  • Refrain from asking women if they are married. If a woman volunteers this information, you may ask a few polite questions about her husband or children.
  • Smoking is not as commonplace and is subject to restrictions in most public places. Even where smoking is allowed, always ask if those you are with will mind if you smoke.

Bon Voyage!Join us in the future for Do’s and Taboos for Venezuela!

To learn more about the Dos and Taboos for different cultures, and the cultural communication styles for Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East – order Gayle Cotton’s bestselling book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’ available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book

Watch the ‘Say Anything-5 Keys’ Video

Create Rapport and Organize Strategies for Success

The CROSS of Cross-Cultural

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training.

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

Gayle’s DVD: Speaker preview for Gayle Cotton

Circles Of Excellence Website: www.circlesofexcellence.com

Circles Of Excellence Blog: www.circlesofexcellence.com/blog

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New Interview on Voyage Dallas Magazine! “Meet Gayle Cotton of Circles Of Excellence”

Posted on July 26, 2017 by Leave a comment

 

Today we’d like to introduce you to Gayle Cotton

Gayle, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.

My background is in Humanities and Behavioral Science, with an emphasis on Neuro-Science and Cultural Science.

In the early nineties, a California-based company asked me for my expertise and help with training programs at Citibank in Zurich, Switzerland. The training went very well, and I was soon traveling regularly to Zurich, and Geneva as well, to facilitate training programs with other U.S. based companies in Switzerland.

Within a year, I was asked by a training company in Geneva to move there and develop Management, Marketing, Presentation Skills and Cross-Cultural courses for The United Nations and international companies throughout Europe and around the world. It was a fantastic opportunity, so off to Geneva I went!

Read on here… Article Link: http://voyagedallas.com/interview/meet-gayle-cotton-circles-excellence-plano/

To learn more about Gayle Cotton or Circles Of Excellence and how we can help you, please visit www.gaylecotton.com and www.circlesofexcellence.com. We’d love to hear from you!

Gayle Cotton’s bestselling book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’ is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book

Watch the ‘Say Anything-5 Keys’ Video

Create Rapport and Organize Strategies for Success

The CROSS of Cross-Cultural

Emmy Award Winner, Gayle Cotton, is the author of this blog and of the bestselling cross-cultural communication book SAY Anything to Anyone, Anywhere! 5 Keys to Successful Cross-Cultural Communication’, which is available on Amazon as a Book, eBook, or Audio Book. She is President of Circles Of Excellence Inc. and a Professional Keynote Speaker. Contact Gayle if you need professional speakers for events, speakers on cultural diversity, conference speakers for events, or keynote speakers that specialize in cross-cultural training. She is a leader in the field of public speakers, motivational speakers, and international keynote speakers. She is among the best of female keynote speakers and women motivational speakers, and is a ‘first choice’ request for international audiences!

Circles Of Excellence provides Corporate Training, Leadership Coaching, and Professional Keynote Speakers for companies of all sizes and in all industries, including over 50 Fortune 500 companies. Contact us about our customized training programs for Communication Skills, Cross-Cultural Communication, Cultural Diversity, Customer Service, Leadership Coaching, Presentation Skills, Sales Negotiations, Stress Management, Teambuilding, and Time Management Training.

Gayle’s Website: www.gaylecotton.com

Gayle’s Blog: www.gaylecotton.com/blog

Gayle’s Bestselling Book: SAY Anything to Anyone Anywhere!

Gayle’s Newsroom: Media Interviews

Gayle’s DVD: Speaker preview for Gayle Cotton

Circles Of Excellence Website: www.circlesofexcellence.com

Circles Of Excellence Blog: www.circlesofexcellence.com/blog

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

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