When I explain cultural differences, often people see them as communication challenges. I want to turn that concept on its head and suggest we view them as opportunities.
For example, if you are from a task-focused culture (like Australia) – where you generally want to get things done, complete a project on time etc and you are dealing with a relationship-based culture (like Korea) – where people want to build trust and get to know you more than worry about deadlines – most people assume this is going to be challenging.
|Image Source: Ben Rosett|
But see the opportunity – when you are armed with this knowledge, you can spin it on its head. Make an effort – go against your instincts and build relationships first. You may just find working with the culture gets you a lot further than struggling against it.