Idea's space

This blog is dedicaded to share ideas coming randomly from my experiences

Work in a multicultural environment.

with 2 comments

Work in an multicultural environment

I spent a major time of my career to work for international companies. When I remember  these assignments contracted in international companies, I can say there were exceptional opportunities for many reasons, and not only for professional opportunities, but also for personal opportunities.

In international environments, you are working with colleagues from different nationalities, multicultural environments where often, the working language is English. As French speaking native, living in a country where there are three different cultures (Flemish, French and German), the presence of colleagues from other countries was the opportunity to improve and practice English language on a regular basis. The basis of collaboration is the communication, but communication is impossible without language knowledge. But language is also the basis of the thought. Better will be the knowledge of a language, better you will express your thoughts, your feelings. But you will be able also to understand also the others.

Starting from the language, you will talk with your colleagues about professional matters, but also about many other matters, which means that you will learn other cultures. By learning different cultures, you will probably discover other sensibilities, other customs and habits, which will make you better understand the point of view of the people on a particular subject, to see different approach from yours. You will establish a better relationship with the people. And if you take care of this, most of the time, people appreciate the interest you bring to their culture. Most of the time, if I know the language of the people I want to talk with, I start to speak in his language. It is an opportunity to practice and to improve my language knowledge.

By sharing our knowledge, our experiences, by sharing different point of view, we acquire new possibilities to move forward our thoughts, our ideas. In some mind mapping seminars, we talk about radiant thought. If for example, you think about an apple, you can think about the tree, about the country where the apple was picked, to the person who picked it, … What I mean here, is that the point of view of somebody having a different culture than your, can bring new ideas, new approaches to you, and increase  your intellectual capabilities.

Do not forget also the social dimension of such multicultural environment. When people from different cultures are developing smooth collaborations and relationships, the success of social integration is ensured. The gratitude of the accomplished work is a key element of our self respect, the condition to respect the others.

As conclusion, it is obvious that multicultural environments are a wealth, the only wealth which nobody can steal, which has an inestimable value. This should be a leitmotiv for everybody, in our professional or personal life: how to transform relationship in wealth ?

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Written by Eric Saint-Guillain

January 18, 2010 at 22:31

2 Responses

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  1. During my MBA I learned that it hasn’t been proven that multicultural teams provide superior results than the others.

    It is an interesting result, isn’t it?


    May 7, 2013 at 15:58

    • Yes it is. Maybe multicultural teams do not provide superior result, but it remains an opportunity for each other to know a bit more about each other.

      Eric Saint-Guillain

      May 7, 2013 at 18:10

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