The Blog for Culture Vultures

Satiate your inner Culture Vulture with regular news and posts about cultural awareness, doing business abroad, working in a multicultural environment, HR diversity and global mobility.

British Culture Still Dictates Social Standing Through 'Class'

British Culture Still Dictates Social Standing Through 'Class'

Like it or not, British culture is still rooted in the class system.

Despite increased multiculturalism and economic growth eroding class somewhat, under the surface and, in the British mindset, class still plays an incredibly strong role.

Continue reading

How Cultural Differences Can Destroy Customer Experience

How Cultural Differences Can Destroy Customer Experience

We all know that a positive customer experience (CX) drives repeat business, increased turnover and higher profits.

Companies who work hard to ensure their customers have a positive experience certainly reap the rewards of their efforts.

Continue reading

Ramadan 2018 - Why your Muslim colleagues are fasting and how you can support them

Ramadan 2018 - Why your Muslim colleagues are fasting and how you can support them

For those of us working in multicultural environments, it’s fair to say that our colleagues may ocassionally observe traditions which we aren’t familiar with. Ramadan is one such occasion.

In the same way that non Muslims may avoid asking questions for fear of intrusion, Muslims may equally avoid going into too much detail about Ramadan for fear of their colleagues not being interested.

Continue reading

Dubai First Gov Games - a Great Lesson in Driving Cultural Diversity

Dubai First Gov Games - a Great Lesson in Driving Cultural Diversity

With over 7 million of its 9 million population classed as non-Emirati, the UAE has become an incredible melting point of cultures and nationalities.

Owing to Dubai’s relatively relaxed attitude and job opportunities, the majority of these expats reside in Dubai itself. Of these expats, South East Asians make up the largest proportion with approximately 8% of Westerners making up the smaller portion.

Continue reading

What is Cross Cultural Training?

What is Cross Cultural Training?

The increase in cultural diversity within many countries due to immigration, resettlement and other factors combined with the evolving demands of globalisation have led to an increase in the need for cross cultural training.

Although such training is common within business, certain global industries, academia, diplomacy and other areas of public and personal life, it is still fairly unknown in terms of how it works.

Continue reading

Does Living in a Multicultural Environment Give You Cross Cultural Skills?

Does Living in a Multicultural Environment Give You Cross Cultural Skills?

As cross-cultural training specialists, we sometimes come across resistance from delegates who have been obligated to attend a cultural awareness session by their boss, HR or the Learning and Development department.

Resistance may stem from many factors, not least of which may be that the benefits and background to the training course have not been fully communicated.

Continue reading

Adapting Training & Learning for a Global Workforce

Adapting Training & Learning for a Global Workforce

One of the effects of globalisation is that global brands and companies with international ambitions must be spread themselves geographically.

Employing a global workforce is essential in today’s hypercompetitive marketplace.

Continue reading

Pearson Education Slapped for Sloppy Approach to Cultural Awareness

Pearson Education Slapped for Sloppy Approach to Cultural Awareness

Have you read about the backlash Pearson Education received regarding a section about cultural awareness in a recent nursing textbook?

Initially it started with a Facebook post outlining some crude cultural stereotypes, but the complaints soon grew large enough and loud enough for Pearson Education to take note.

Continue reading

3 Stunningly Simple Tips to Create Trust in Cross-Cultural Teams

3 Stunningly Simple Tips to Create Trust in Cross-Cultural Teams

Culturally diverse teams are becoming more and more the norm as international businesses continue to hire in talent from around the globe.

Anyone who has worked in a multicultural team knows that this comes with challenges.

Continue reading

Cross-Cultural Tips for Remote and Virtual Teams

Cross-Cultural Tips for Remote and Virtual Teams

Working remotely, across time zones, with different cultures and through various communication channels is becoming more and more common.

Over the last 10 years or so, training demand for courses that focus specifically on helping remote and culturally diverse teams have grown year on year.

Continue reading

150+ CEOs Commit to Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace

150+ CEOs Commit to Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace

CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion™ will "Improve Corporate Performance, Drive Growth, and Enhance Employee Engagement" says founding companies

In a sign of the growing importance of diversity issues within the workplace, a group of more than 150 CEOs from some of the world’s leading companies have put their names againt CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion™ -  the largest ever CEO-driven commitment to advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

Continue reading

Culture Affects The Language We Use When We Tell Lies

Culture Affects The Language We Use When We Tell Lies

Researchers believe they have discovered a link between someone's culture and the language they use when they are telling porkie pies (Cockney slang for 'lies').

Psychologists, led by Professor Paul Taylor of Lancaster University in the UK, have just published the findings of their research, entitled "Culture moderates changes in linguistic self-presentation and detail provision when deceiving others", in Royal Society Open Science.

Continue reading

How to Avoid Cultural Appropriation & Promote Cultural Awareness Instead

How to Avoid Cultural Appropriation & Promote Cultural Awareness Instead

Once upon a time cultural appropriation was something theorised and discussed solely at universities.

Now, due to our globalized, interconnected, social media fuelled world, the use (or in this case, misuse) of another’s cultural property can turn into big news.

Continue reading

The Death of Cockney and the Rise of Multicultural London English

The Death of Cockney and the Rise of Multicultural London English

Accents are an amazing window onto our history.  As accents die, so too are accents born in response to changes in our environment.

In ‘The Lost Cockney Voice’ available on podcast via Radio 4 downloads, Cole Moreton talks about the unique cockney accent of his grandmother’s era.

Continue reading

6 Common Ways People Create Disharmony in Multicultural Teams

6 Common Ways People Create Disharmony in Multicultural Teams

Multicultural teams are now the norm within many of our larger companies, organisations and brands.

Challenges relating to communication, trust and morale within culturally diverse teams are common.

Continue reading

Cultural Diversity Explains Why Americans Smile So Much

Cultural Diversity Explains Why Americans Smile So Much

Researchers believe they have finally disovered why the wide, white-teethed smile is so important in American culture - immigrants and cultural diversity.

Across different cultures, a smile can mean many things. In more expressive cultures such as the USA, where showing emotions is not necessarily a bad thing, and in which hierarchy and social differences are less acute, the smile is a lot more common.

Continue reading

More Countries Identifying with Multiculturalism and Diversity Finds Text Analysis on Impact of Globalization

More Countries Identifying with Multiculturalism and Diversity Finds Text Analysis on Impact of Globalization

“How would you explain your country's culture to someone who isn’t at all familiar with it?”

This was the question posed by OdinText to more than 15,500 people across the globe in the hope of finding some insights into cultural differences or similarities.

Continue reading

Beware of Jews. The End of Multiculturalism?

Beware of Jews. The End of Multiculturalism?

A warning sign with the silhouette of an Orthodox Jewish man wearing a traditional 'Fedora' hat has been found on a lamp-post in north London amid one of the largest Hasidic communities in Europe.

At a time when the foreigner, the immigrant, the Muslim, the Jew, the Mexican, etc are being constantly vilified by some segments of our media, one should not be surprised by the increasing intolerance towards 'the other'.

Continue reading

Do You See a Nanny or a Mother? Unconscious Bias and Racial Stereotyping

Do You See a Nanny or a Mother? Unconscious Bias and Racial Stereotyping

The recent viral video of Professor Robert Kelly talking to the BBC via Skype has perfectly illustrated how unconscious bias works.

When his kids break into the room and interrupt the interview, an Asian lady comes to get them. Did you see a Nanny or a Mum? 

Having gone viral across the globe many US and other news outlets described the lady as Professor Kelly’s ‘maid’.  Her ethnicity clearly contributed to the rather preconditioned assessment that she was working for Professor Kelly.  The fact that this lady, Jung-a Kim may have been Professor Kelly’s wife failed to register.

This is, unfortunately, as clear a case of Unconscious Bias that I have witnessed in a long time. 

Continue reading

What is Driving Diversity to Become a CEO-level Strategic Concern?

What is Driving Diversity to Become a CEO-level Strategic Concern?

Research from Deloitte finds that diversity and inclusion in the workplace are now leadership-level issues, central to future growth and security.

Findings from the firm's 2017 Global Human Capital Trends report suggest that diversity has moved away from a predominantly HR-focused, "check box ticking" initiative to one of key strategic importance at CEO-level.

Continue reading