When communicating in the business world one may encounter a hurdle that must be jumped in order to succeed. Any small differences, especially cultural, can affect business communications. In order to succeed, in the world of business, one must be willing to modify our communication style, customs, values and norms, according to whom we are engaging in business with. Whenever doing business with someone from a different culture, or country, it is crucial to learn about them, which could help overcome any obstacle, if it were to arise.
This article talks about differences in customs, language barriers, target audience, technology, and politics, which could decide what road your business will take. The first thing discussed is customs, which “includes basic customs, mannerisms and gestures” (Brown). In order to avoid insulting a potential customer or partner with things such as our body language and gestures, one must adapt to their way. For instance, in some places, crossing the index and middle fingers is often a gesture when wishing good luck. But, in Vietnam it is an obscene gesture that is said to resemble female genitals. Another common barrier, which we sometimes face on a daily basis when communicating with others is language. Language includes the tone, pitch, aggressive, passive and assertive way of verbally communicating with others. The third would be the target audience, which will not always be the same from country to country, or city to city within a state. For this, businesses often use market segmentation, a marketing strategy that divides a broad target market into subsequent markets, putting the focus on one market at a time.
Another difference, which could play both ways is technology.