NESB exec? Here’s a way to improve you informal comm skills
In my client workshops there are often people enrolled who have been born in non-English speaking countries, and are of non-native English speakers – as might be expected.
Several of these executives want to know how to better assimilate into, and understand Australia and its business culture.
If you are an immigrant, and of non-English speaking background my recommendation would be to learn more about the various aspects of Australian life: its cultural life, sport, arts, politics etc.
In sharing this message I don’t suggest you develop an avid interest in a particular area. Rather, it’s useful to know, for example: what team is in the grand final in a particular sport, who are the marquee players, the current popular Australian actors, or the names of the national political leaders.
The value in learning this information is that when you’re having a casual conversation – for example prior to or after a business meeting – you can better understand the gist of the conversation that can occur, and perhaps even make a contribution or ask a question about the topic.
This awareness can help you, appear less ‘culturally stiff’ and help you better assimilate into the local culture.
In addition, this awareness can contribute to a positive impression of a you – an impression of a more well-rounded person (rather than one who only has a business focus).
Everytime you interact with someone it forms and impression and a potential for loss or gain. Small, repeated impressions of you – in the competitive business environments of today – can mean the difference between you getting/not getting a promotion, being selected for a special project or not, or being given added responsibility or not.
You Call to action/How to apply for this post: If you an immigrant to Australia and are of non-native English speaking background, methodically over time, increase your general understanding of Australian society and its culture.