Sunday, September 19, 2010

PRESENTING BAD NEWS IN OTHER CULTURES




HOW DO I  PRESENT BAD NEWS IN OTHER CULTURES?

When dealing with bad news it is really important to keep cultures in mind.Depending on the culture different strategies may be necessary because different cultures understand things differently. 
          
http://www.i-depth.com/P/o/oz04464.frm.1.msg/81.html              
  •  North Americans  generally present bad messages indirectly. 
  •  In Germany business communicators occasionally use buffer but tend to present bad news directly.    
  • British writers are straightforward with bad news, seeing no reason to soften its announcement.                           
  • In Asia disputing the harmony with bad news is avoided.Japanese communicators use different methods to say no and they use hints to deliver bad news  
  • In Thailand negativism presented by a refusal is completely alien : the word "no" does not exist          
http://books.google.ca/books?id=1ZQftFg_G7gC&pg=PA153&dq=presenting+bad+news+in+other+cultures&hl=en&ei=gxmaTMyNAYGBnQeZwfGaDw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=book-thumbnail&resnum=1&ved=0CC0Q6wEwADgK#v=onepage&q&f=false



PHRASE USED IN            POSSIBLE MEANING
    NORTH AMERICA


I agree                                           I agree with 15% of what you say

We might be able to........            Not a chance

We will consider                          We will consider but the real decision maker will not

Yes                                           Yes, I am listening or Yes, you have a good point          
                                                       


PROBLEMS IN PRESENTING BAD NEWS IN OTHER CULTURES

  •  Asian people usually say, "That will be difficult," "We will have to give that further study," or "Maybe instead of saying direct  "no".Americans who are delivering direct language sometimes think that their Asian partners are misleading  and confusing them. Asians use this method of expressing  bad news   as an attempt to hide their intentions in negative situations. Asian people think indirect language is a good way of delivering bad or disappointing news. They are being polite , hoping not to hurt any one's feelings in order to maintain a good relationship. 


  • In low-context cultures, what someone says is usually what they mean. Almost nothing is left unsaid. They are not familiar with understanding non-verbal clues.
        




CHALLENGES OF PRESENTING BAD NEWS IN OTHER CULTURES

  •  Understand the  'western' way to deliver bad news is not the universal way.

  •  Broaden your knowledge  to include new culture of the workplace.
  •  Evaluate the context in which the bad news  is being delivered 
  • Always use the indirect pattern as it lessens the impact of the bad news and may diminish a cultural misinterpretation                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

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