Connecting Cultures: Building Cultural Competence Among Airport Employees

Intercultural training programs

Global Arena provides highly-specialized intercultural training programs to an international airport in Pennsylvania.

The objective of this training is to create a set of intercultural tools that allow our client to promote a business environment in which each employee, regardless of their cultural origin, feels valued.

The program has been offered to a group of US employees who had to travel to China on business. In order to customize the program to the trainees’ specific needs; we have asked each of them to complete an evaluation questionnaire to better understand their cultural lens.

The training has been given by a highly qualified intercultural expert; and with extensive international experience; specifically in China – US relations, and supported by a native Chinese resource person.

The scope of the training was to educate the American employees traveling overseas; on what to know from a cultural perspective before their trip. They learned how to generate a good impression on their Chinese counterparts in order to create a trustworthy environment; as the foundation of their future relationship. The program has been designed to allow participants to examine cultural differences; understand how they influence intercultural interactions, and consequently understand how to apply these concepts to generate a successful intercultural business association from the beginning. Participants learned skills that promote effective relationships and, therefore good communication with their international colleagues.

Some of the topics covered:

  • Comparison of U.S. American cultural perspectives with those of the Chinese
  • Business Etiquette Guidelines
  • Social Etiquette Guidelines
  • Strategies for interacting successfully with the Chinese
  • Impact of cultural differences in communication styles
  • Strategies for communicating successfully across language barriers

Intercultural training session

As result of this intercultural training session; all American participants were able to establish the foundation for a solid business relationship with their Chinese counterparts.

The American participants accepted the meaning of trust in a Chinese cultural environment. They have understood that trust is absolutely essential to achieve a successful commercial relationship in this cultural environment, therefore, the participants have focused and exercised the understanding and appreciation of cultural differences with their Chinese counterparts.

As a collateral benefit trainees were also able to improve communication with people from other cultures; by learning methods to overcome language barriers and understanding both non-verbal and verbal communication. Additionally, they developed culturally appropriate strategies for dealing with cultural differences in business customs and social protocols; and learned how to identify specific situations where misunderstandings are likely to occur and develop appropriate response strategies.

All attendees coincided that the cross-cultural concepts that they learned and practiced were eye-opening and help them to optimize; and in some cases redefine, their business approach strategy and goals based on the cultural learnings. Trainees became very excited about their upcoming trip and reduced their level of anxiety as they were now well-prepared and knew what to expect ahead of time.

This is Global Arena’s last installment of the 4-part blog series about our Intercultural and Cross-cultural training programs and how we help our customers to improve their chances of international success.

We will continue publishing success stories about how we have helped and we are helping companies across the world to build successful business relationships and have a positive impact on their bottom line by starting on the right cultural foot.

If you want to discuss how our experts can help your organization’s international operations do not hesitate to contact us.

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