Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 22

6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

JournalofInterculturalCommunication,ISSN14041634,issue43,March2017

CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunication
NeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobal
MulticulturalEnvironment
TheEmployeesPerspective
ArkadiuszGut,MichaWilczewskiandOlegGorbaniuk
JohnPaulIICatholicUniversityofLublinandtheUniversityofWarsaw

Abstract
ThisstudyexaminesthepersonalopinionsofChineseemployeesworkinginamulticulturalenvironmentontherelationshipbetweencultural
diversityandtheefficacyoftheircommunicationinamulticulturalenvironment.Tobetterunderstandtheconnectionbetweencultural
backgroundandefficientbusinesscommunication,weconductedaquestionnairesurveyin2014among20employeesfromaChinesesubsidiary
ofaEuropeantopglobalmanufacturingcompany.Analysesshowedthateveniftherespondentsexpressednegativeeffectsofculturaldifferences
oncommunication,theyalsomanifestedpositiveattitudestowardinterculturalinteractions.Moreover,ignoringorevendisrespectingthedifferent
culturalvaluesofinteractantswereregardedasbasicbarriersininterculturalcommunication,andsuchbarrierscanbeavoidedwhenadifferent
culturalbackgroundisrespected.Althoughculturaldifferenceswereconsideredtohindertherespondentsperformanceandoftentobeasource
ofdissatisfaction,theydidnotdiscouragethemfromenteringintointerculturalcommunication.

Keywords:interculturalcommunication,businesscommunication,culturaldiversity,stereotypes,Chinesemanagers,collectivism,psychological
needs

1.Introduction
Previousstudieshaveshownthatdespiteprogressiveglobalizationandtheblurringofbordersbetweennationalmarkets,aphenomenonofthe
reinforcementofculturaldifferencesbetweennations,regionsandethnicgroupscanbeobserved(Lillis&Tian2010),whichoftenleadsto
communicationproblemsinglobalisedbusiness(Ferraro2002).Anyresearchintotheinfluenceofculturerelevantfactorsoncommunication
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 1/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

practicesinabusinesscontextisasteptowardsrecognizingtheseproblemsandisindispensablefordesigninganddevelopinganyintercultural
businessmethodthatcouldbeappliedtofacilitatetheefficacyofcommunicationbetweenandamongemployeesworkinginglobalcorporations.

ThisstudyexaminesthepersonalopinionsofChineseemployeesworkinginamulticulturalenvironmentontherelationshipbetweencultural
diversityandtheefficacyofinterculturalcommunicationinaworkplace.Thatrelationshipneedstobecontinuouslyexploredduetoglobalization
andtheinternationalizationofEuropeancompanies,especiallyinthecontextofthelatestattemptsbyCentralEuropeanpoliticianstomake
EuropeanandChinesebusinesscollaborationcloserthaneverbefore.AsnewbusinessesbetweenEastAsiansandEuropeanswillplacemanagers
innewculturalcontexts,itisworthconsideringtheopinionsofChineseemployeeswhohavesofarbeenexposedtocommunicationwith
Europeans.

Afterabriefpresentationoftheaimandthepartsoftheorymostrelevanttoourstudy,wepresentspecificresearchquestionsanddesign.Inthe
subsequentsections,wepresentsurveyresultsanddescribeparticipantsattitudestowardscommunicationinteractionswithcoworkersfrom
othercultures,participantsfeelingsaboutcommunicationbarriersandtheirimpactonthesatisfactionoftheirpsychologicalneeds,andtheir
personalviewsaboutpossiblemeanstoovercomethosedifficulties.Theempiricalpartisfollowedbyadiscussionandconcludingremarksonthe
advantagesofcontinuingresearchintotheinfluenceofculturespecificfactorsontheefficacyofinterculturalcommunicationcontactsinbusiness
contexts.

2.ResearchAimandTheoreticalPerspectives
Themainaimofthisstudyistodeterminetowhatextentcultureunderstoodfromtheanthropologicalperspectiveasknowledge,beliefs,art,
moralrules,ideas,standards,law,customs,capabilitiesandhabitsacquiredbypeopleandsharedbythemwithothermembersofsociety
(Benedict1934Tylor1958Hill2005),andfromthecognitiveperspectiveascollectiveprogrammingofthemind,cognitivepatterns,waysof
thinking,feelings,interactionstyleswhichareacquired,describedandcommunicatedbymeansofsymbols,andsociallytransmittedfromone
generationtoanother(Kluckhohn1951Geertz1973DAndrade1984Triandis1994Hofstede2001Swaidan&Hayes2005Matsumoto2006)
affectsthewayscompanyemployeesperceivecommunicationpracticesinamultinationalbusinessenvironment,andtowhatextent
interculturalinteractionsshapethepictureofinterculturalbusinesscommunicationasseenbytheveryparticipantsoftheprocessof
communication.

Wewillexaminetwobasicandgeneralrelationshipswhichhavetobetakenintoaccountwhenplanninganyresearchintointercultural
communicationinabusinessenvironment.Thefirstoneconcernsemployeesorientationtotheprocessofcommunicationinthecompanyandthe
culturalbackgroundoftheemployees.Suchanoppositionhasbeenprojectedbecausemeasuringanindividualsattitudetocommunication,i.e.
thelevelofhisorherunderstandingthattheneedsandfeelingsofothersbeingsignaled,expressed,maintainedanddevelopedthrough
communicationpracticesareimportantinsocialrelationships,toacertaindegreereflectsthelevelofawarenessthatcoworkersshouldcarefor
oneanotherswellbeingandsatisfactionwithinterculturalinteractions.

Thesecondrelationshipregardsculturalbarriersandcommunicationobstaclesininterculturalbusinesscommunicationasdeterminedby
stereotypestowardotherculturesaswellasbytheattitudestowardculturaldifferencesofinteractantsfromthesamecorporation.Whatwemean

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 2/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

hereisareconstructionofthelinkbetweentheprofessionalcommunicationexperiencesofemployeeswithrepresentativesofothercultures,and
theirindividualperceptionofinterculturalbusinesscommunication.

2.1CulturalDiversityandInterculturalBusinessCommunication
TheworksofMarkusetal.(1997),Hofstede(2001),Kitayama&Cohen(2007)orNisbett(2007)showthattheareaofsocialcognitionhasfor
severaldecadesbeenasubjectofdiscussionontheinfluenceofculturally,linguisticallyandsociallyspecificfactorsonthecognitivestylesand
structureswhichdeterminepeoplespreferencesasforcommunicationstyles(Gut&Wilczewski2015).Recentstudiesintotheinfluenceof
sociallyandculturallyspecificfactorsonbusinesscommunicationshowthatamongthecategoriesaffectingcommunicationpracticesina
multinationalenvironmentare(1)thebehaviorofindividualstowardacommunity,(2)construingtheselfdependentlyorinterdependently,and
(3)sensitivitytophilosophies,traditionsandvalues.

2.2IngroupRelations
Culturaldimensionsofindividualismvs.collectivismaccountforthebehaviorofindividualstowardsthemselveswithinagroupandtowards
othermembersofthegroup.BecausecollectivismhasbeenrecognizedasdominantamongEasterncultures(Hofstede2001Robertsonetal.
2001),asopposedtoWesternculturescharacterizedbystrongindividualism,theparticipantsinourstudyareassumedtopresentcollectivistic
behavior,i.e.theywillbydefinitiontakeintoaccounttheircoworkerswelfare,andthataccountwillbeevenstrongerthantheirown(butjust
withintheingrouprelationscf.Triandis1988).Drawingonthefactthatcooperationishighiningroupsbutisunlikelywhentheotherperson
belongstoanoutgroup(Triandisetal.1988:325)andthatthebasicvaluesforcollectivisticindividualsarebenevolence,conformity,and
tradition(Ralstonetal.2012:482Schwartz1994),wepredictthattheemployeessurveyedwill(i)demonstratestrongcommunalorientation,(ii)
theywillrecognizecultureasaprimalfactoraffectingtheprocessofbuildingrelationshipsintheirmulticulturalworkplace,(iii)theywillstrongly
expressawillingnesstohavetheirculturerespectedincommunicationinteractionswithcoworkersfromothercultures.

2.3ConstruingtheSelf
BecauseAsianculturesaredescribedascollectivisticandWesternculturesasindividualistic,weassumethatChineseemployeeswillexpressa
tendencytoconstruetheirselveswithreferencetosocialcontext,somehowconstruingaformofinterdependencybetweenthemselvesandtheir
ingroupmembers,whichinturnislinkedtodefiningtheconceptofselfinarelationalmannerbyreferringtoothers.Accordingly,wepredict
thatsurveyparticipantswillconcentrateontheircoworkersmoreoftenthanonthemselves,orthatconcentratingonthemselveswillberelational,
i.e.thattheywillexpresstheirpsychologicalneedswithreferencetotheircoworkersneeds.Asitcomestointerculturalcontacts,wehence
assumethatevenifsometeammemberscomefromdifferentculturesandtheirculturalvaluesmightberegardedasforeigntoChineseculture,
Chineseemployeeswillstillpresentpositiveattitudestothemandaccentuatetheneedofrespectingculturalvaluesascollectivisticculturesare
morefocusedonpromotingothersgoalsandsustainingharmonyasopposedtoindividualisticculturesbeingfocusedonpersonalgoalsandan
individualsautonomy(Markus&Kitayama1991:2412).

2.4CulturalValues
Asfortheroleofculturalvaluesininterculturalbusinesscommunication,recentstudieshavesignaledarelationshipbetweenHofstedes
dimensions(esp.powerdistance,collectivismvs.individualism,uncertaintyavoidance,longtermorientationandmasculinityvs.femininity)and
modesofdecisionmaking,communicationmodels,managementstylesandthevalueswhichguidemanagerswhenbuildingbusiness
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 3/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

relationships(Abramsonetal.1993Tang&Ward2003Kobayashi&Viswat2011Neuliep2011).Someresearchfindingsshowthatthe
selectionofastyleofcommunicationmaybeaffectedbythevalueswhichguideemployees.Forinstance,Koreanspreferanindirectstyleof
communicationbecauseofsuchConfucianvaluesasharmony,consensusoregalitarianism(Merkin2005),andalsobecausetheyaresensitiveto
face(savingface),preferringcompromisetoresolveconflicts(Park1993Lim&Choi1996).Mostcomparativeresearchintotheinfluenceof
axiologicalsystems(e.g.inConfucian,BuddhistorProtestantphilosophies)onbusinesscommunicationpracticeshastraditionallyconsistedin
comparingAsianswithAmericansandexploringthevalueswhichguidetheminbusinesscommunication(harmony,cooperation,winwin
principle,longtermrelationships,respectfulmanners,etiquette,perseverance,attitudetochanges,flexibilitytotherules,loyalty,etc.),treating
thesetwogroupsasmodelrepresentativesofhighcontextandlowcontextcultures(seee.g.TingToomeyetal.1991Gernet1995:471Yook&
Ahn1999Auneetal.2001Li&Moreira2009).However,uniqueresearchintothepresenceofConfucianandProtestantvaluesinthework
ethicsofAsianandnonAsiancountries(PhuongMai2005Domuratetal.2012)showsthatConfucianvaluesdonothavetobelimitedtoAsian
cultures,andsurprisinglycertainnonAsiancountries(e.g.thePolishone)arecharacterizedbyahighlevelofcollectivismandevenhigher
levelofConfucianWorkEthicsthan,e.g.,Koreans.

Thesefindingsindicatethatcommunicationpracticesarenotexclusivelydeterminedbyculturalcategories(bybelongingtoaspecifictypeof
culture),butalsobyaxiologicalpreferences(e.g.workingforthecommonwealth,specificperspectiveonmaterialissues)andbyexternal
contexts(e.g.byaneconomicinterrelationbetweenacountryseconomicdevelopmentandthevaluesofcollectivismandindividualism).
Accordingly,webelievethatcategorizingemployeesaccordingtotheirculturalbackgroundsandpredictingtheirattitudestowardothercultures,
coworkerswithdifferentculturalbackgroundaswellbehaviortowardcommunityingeneralleadstoreductionismresultinginadistortedimage
oftheprocessofinterculturalbusinesscommunicationespeciallyifwetakeintoaccounttheroleofcorporatecultureindetermining
communicationinteractionsinacompany.Therefore,weagreewithChao(2000)thatindividualbeliefs,opinions,preferencesandattitudes
towardtheprocessofcommunicationinvolvingotherculturesshouldbeexploredfromanindividualsperspective,i.e.theorizedandthen
measuredattheindividuallevel,yetdiscussedwithregardtotheemployersexternalculturalbackground,imposingcertainculturalcategorieson
them,andtogrouplevelimplicationssuchasvaluessharedcollectively(Nguyenetal.2010:181).Inourstudy,whichisfocusedonemployees
individualexperiences,opinions,preferencesandattitudestowardtheprocessofinterculturalcommunication,weassumethatChineseemployees
willregardcommunicationwithpeoplefromotherculturesasapositiveandsignificantprocessduetoahighlevelofcollectivism,construingthe
selfinterdependently,andhenceconsideringitintermsofameanstomaintainingrouprelationswhichworksforthegroupswelfare.

2.5Stereotypes
Suchemployeesfeaturesasparochialism,ethnocentrism,culturalimperialismandstereotypinghavebeenfoundfullypejorativeinthecontextof
multiculturalmanagement,aswellasattemptstomanageemployeesfromdifferentculturalbackgroundsinthesamemannerhaveturnedoutto
beachallengetoglobalbusinesses(Chaney&Martin2011Okoro2013).Asstereotypicalperceptionsofinteractantslieinthefieldofour
interest,itisworthspecifyingthatstereotypesarewidelyaccepted,culturallysharedbeliefsdescribingpersonaltraitsandcharacteristicsof
groupsofindividuals(Ramasubramanian2011).AccordingtoW.Lipmann(1922),stereotypesaresimplifiedandoftendistortedpicturesinour
headswhichrefertophenomenaandpeople,andwhichhelppeopleovercomeanoverwhelmingamountofinformation,complexityofthe
surroundingworld(cf.McGartyetal.2002:23),andenablethemtomakesenseoftheirworldlyencounters(Hager2010:127).Evenifa
stereotypicalperceptionmaybefalse,stereotypeanswersthequestionofwhatsomethingshouldbelikeifwewanttobelievebasingonour
culturalexperiencesthatthatthingiswhatitis(Habrajska1998:117).Somelinguistsbelievethatstereotypizationisanepiphenomenonof
thinkingthatisoversimplified,schematic,andoftenwrong(Shaumjan2006:179),andthatitfalsifiesthepictureofpeopleandobjectsitrefersto.
However,performingthenominalfunction,stereotypehelpspeoplecategorizetheelementsofthesurroundingrealityandunderstandtheir
experiences.Similarlytosymbolormyth,stereotypeisofambivalentcharacterandconveysbothpositiveandnegativemeaningsandreferences,
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 4/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

relyingonsuchfactorsasage,gender,race,religion,professionandnationality(Permyakova2015),whicharemodeledbyhistorytradition,
politics,andessentiallybythemassmedia(Michajowa2007:176).

Exploringtheroleofsocialstereotype(whichconstitutesastandardizedopiniononcertainsocialgroupsorrepresentativesofthesegroups,
Kotorowa2014:187)ininterculturalcommunicationprovidesanopportunitytounderstandculturalfoundationsofthecognitiveprocessof
categorization,andhenceenablesustograspfolkperceptionsofpeoplefromothercultures,inparticularitallowsustoreconstructtheway
peopleperceivethemselvesandothers.Thistaskseemsindispensableinthecontextofinterculturalcoursesforstudentsandtrainingsfor
employeesworkinginmulticulturalenvironmentsasitcontributestotheirgeneralknowledgebaseaboutthetargetcultureaswellasincrease
reflectionontheforeignculture,thelearnersownculture,andtheprocessofformingjudgmentsingeneral(Weber1990:137).

3.ResearchQuestions
Thepresentstudyaimsatexploringtheinfluenceofculturaldiversityoninterculturalbusinesscommunication,consideredfromanemployees
perspective.Weareparticularlyinterestedinemployeesattitudestowardscommunicationinteractionswithprofessionalswithothercultural
backgrounds,aswellasintheirfeelingsandopinionsaboutsourcesofdifficultiesinsuchcommunication,theirimpactonthesatisfactionofthe
interactantspsychologicalneeds,andfinallypossiblemeanstoovercomethosedifficulties.Accordingly,theresearchquestionsare:Whatare
participantsexperiencesofandopinionson(1)theinfluenceofculturaldiversityontheprocessofcommunicationinaworkplace?,(2)the
influenceofstereotypicalperceptionsofemployeesonprofessionalcommunicationandthesatisfactionoftheirpsychologicalneeds,(3)thesources
ofcommunicationproblemsandmeanstoovercometheminthefuture?

4.Method
Toexploretheconnectionbetweenbelongingtoaspecificculturalbackgroundandefficientbusinesscommunication,inMay2014wesurveyed
throughquestionnaires20Chinesepeopleworkingforoneofthetopglobalmanufacturingcompaniesoperatinginaninternationalenvironment
(thenameofthecompanyisnotgivenforreasonsofconfidentiality)inoneofthecompanyssubsidiariesinChina.Thecompanyhasaround70
factoriesworldwideandemploysover100,000people.Therespondentsansweredquestionsinwriting.Althoughtheresearcherscouldnotask
anyfurtherspecificquestions,therespondentshadachancetogiveextrainformationundereachquestionwhennecessary.

4.1Participants
Atotalof20Chinesehighlevelwhitecollarworkers(males=7,andfemales=13)participatedinthepresentstudy.Theyhadbeenworkingin
thesameglobalcompanyfortheperiodbetween217years(M=7.50SD=4.97).Amongalloftheemployees,10werespecialists,7were
managers,and3wereadministrativeworkers,ofwhom9workedforsupportservicedepartment,6forproductiondepartment,and5for
communicationsdepartment.Allthemanagersreportedthattheirinterculturalcommunicationencountersconcernedcommunicationwiththeir
subordinates,whereasalltheotherrespondentsindicatedtheircoworkers.Accordingly,theresultsdiscussedbelowrefertointercultural
communicationcontactsbetweenmanagersandtheirinferiorsaswellasamongemployeesatthesamelevel(withiningroups).

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 5/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

ThequestionnairesurveywasconductedinEnglish.ThatwaspossibleduetheemployeessufficientknowledgeofEnglishallofthemdeclared
aregularuseofEnglishintheworkplacefor50%upto80%oftheirtime(M=49.25SD=16.56),andaregularuseofChineseupto80%of
theirtimespentatwork(M=47.25SD=20.22).Additionally,apartfromEnglishandChinese,twomanagersandtwospecialistsspokeFrench
aswell.

4.2Questionnaires
BesidestheBackgroundQuestionnaireincludingbasicinformationconcerningdemographicdata,professionalpositionheldinthecompany,
yearsofemployment,andtheuseoflanguagesattheworkplace,theparticipantscompleted3questionnaires(seeAppendix)gatheringdataat
threelevels:cultural,sociocultural,andpsychocultural,i.e.respectively:(1)CulturalDifferencesinaWorkEnvironment(analteredand
developedversionofL.AblonczyMihlykasquestionnaireBusinessCommunicationBetweenPeopleWithDifferentCulturalBackgrounds
(2009)dealingwiththeinfluenceofculturaldifferencesonprofessionalinterculturalcommunicationandwithactualcommunicationsituations
inwhichparticipantshadexperiencedculturaldifferences,(2)StereotypesinInterculturalCommunicationContactscontainingstatements
measuringthelevelofprejudicetowardsparticipants,howitismanifestedincommunicationinteractions,aswellasitseffectsontheir
willingnesstocommunicateatwork,and(3)CulturalBasisforCommunicationProblemscheckinganimpactofculturaldifferenceson
participantswellbeing,fulfillmentoftheirpsychologicalneedsandtheireverydayprofessionalresponsibilitiesmoreover,thatquestionnaire
checkedparticipantssuggestionsaboutthepossiblemeanstoavoid(intheirworkplace)communicationproblemsfoundedoncultural
differences.

Theresultsofanalysesofrespondentsanswerstoquestionnairequestionswillbepresentedintheformofmeansandstandarddeviations
calculatedindividuallyforeachquestion.Allitemsinthethreequestionnaireswereanchoredona5pointLikertscalerangingfrom1=strongly
disagreeto5=stronglyagree.Accordingly,resultscloseto5signifyahighlevelofagreementwithagivenitem,andresultscloseto1signifya
strongdisagreementwiththeitem.

5.SurveyResults
5.1CulturalDifferencesinaWorkEnvironment
Communicationproblemsderivingfrominterculturalinteractionswereevidencedinourquestionnairesurvey(resultsareshowninTable1).First
ofall,itmustbeemphasizedthatalltheparticipantsrecognizedtheconceptofcultureasimportantforthemandtheircoworkers.The
participantsresponsesclearlyshowthattheyhaveencounterednegativeaspectsofculturaldiversityimpedingtheirprofessionalcommunication
andthattheyareawareofcommunicationproblemsarisingfrominterculturalcontacts,whichisseenintheanswerstoStatement3(M=4.45,SD
=.76).Moreover,80%oftheChineseemployeesagreedorpartlyagreedthatpeoplewithdifferentculturalbackgroundscommunicatewith
difficulties,whichmayindicatethattheythemselveshaveexperiencedsuchcommunicationproblemsatwork(M=4.05,SD=1.05).Importantly,
theemployeesseemnottorelatethosedifficultiestopeople,butrathertotheirculturalbackgroundsbecausetheirculturefavorsdifferentmeans
ofcommunication(Statement5M=4.00,SD=.86).Thatiswhytheyvalueculturaladaptabilityasawaytoovercomethosedifferences
(Statement7M=4.75,SD=.44),whichalsosuggeststhattheemployeesreflectpositiveattitudestowardinterculturalcontactsthisisnot
surprisingbecauseaccordingtotheconceptofPositiveOrganizationScholarshipingeneral(see,e.g.,KalinowskaAndrian2006,Rozkwitalska
2011),andmanagementpsychology(Stevensetal.2008),interculturalinteractionsbetweenpeoplewhorepresentdifferentexperiences,models
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 6/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

ofperceptionandthinking,andtheirapproachestosolvingproblems,positivelyexpandthearrayofpossibilitiesofsolvingproblemsandmay
resultinincreasedjobsatisfactionduetodiversity,personalandprofessionaldevelopment,achancetogainnewknowledgeandexperiencesas
wellasadventure(Stahletal.2010,Rozkwitalska2011)whichthoseinteractionsoffertocompanyworkerswhoworkinaninternational
environment.Anotherimportantculturalfactoraffectinginterculturalcommunicationataworkplaceisstereotypes,withwhich70%ofthe
respondentsagreedorpartlyagreed(Statement8M=4.10,SD=1.21).Thatfactorsolelypertainstotheemployeesfeelingsabouthowtheyare
perceivedbytheirinteractantsaswellashowtheyareperceivedbythem(thatmatterisdiscussedinmoredetailinsectionStereotypesin
InterculturalCommunicationContacts).

Table1:Participantsviewsonculturaldiversityincommunication

M SD

Cultureisimportantforme. 4.45 .69

Cultureisimportantformycoworkers. 4.60 .60

Culturaldifferencescauseproblemsinbusinesscommunicationbetweenpeoplewithdifferentculturalbackgrounds. 4.45 .76

Peoplewithdifferentculturalbackgroundscommunicatewithdifficulties. 4.05 1.05

Differentculturesfavordifferentmeansofcommunication. 4.00 .86

Culturaldifferencesmakemyworkmoredifficult. 3.05 1.15

Culturaladaptabilityisimportantinbusinesscommunicationintheglobalworkplace. 4.75 .44

Stereotypesincultureinfluencebusinesscommunications. 4.10 1.21

1stronglydisagree,5stronglyagree

Inturn,theresultsofthepartofsurveyaskingaboutcircumstanceswhenparticipantsobserveculturaldifferencesintheirworkplace(Table2)
clearlyshowthatthosedifferencesarestronglynoticedduringcommunicationinteractionswhentalkingtocoworkers(M=4.50,SD=.51)and
supervisors(M=4.05,SD=1.19),asthecontextsoffocusingontheirworkactivities(M=4.15,SD=.81)andhavingabreakatwork(M=3.55,
SD=1.19)(whichdonotentirelyinvolvecommunication)weremarkedundecidedanddisagreebysomeofparticipants.Althoughthe
differenceswerealsonotspottedbysomeemployeeswhenmeetingwithcoworkersafterwork(15%),80%oftherespondentsstatedthatthey
hadnoticedsuchdifferencesafterwork,whichmeansthatbecausetheymusthavemetwiththecoworkersfromdifferentculturesafterworkthey
hadbeenopentointerculturalcontacts.
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 7/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Table2:Participantsresponsesspecifyingwhenculturaldifferencesareobserved

Culturaldifferencesareobserved M SD

WhenItalktomycoworkers. 4.50 .51

WhenItalktomysuperiors. 4.05 1.19

WhenIwork. 4.15 .81

WhenIhaveabreakatwork. 3.55 1.19

WhenImeetwithmycoworkersafterwork. 4.00 1.17

1stronglydisagree,5stronglyagree

5.2StereotypesinInterculturalCommunicationContacts

Itisworthnotingthattheparticipantsexpressedapositiveattitudetoworkingwithpeoplefromdifferentcultures(M=4.25,SD=1.02),which
wasconfirmedbytheirresponsesconcerningarespectfortheculturalvaluesoftheircoworkers(M=4.80,SD=.41)andthesignificanceofthe
conceptofrespectregardingtheirviewofculturalvaluesingeneral(see:Ifeelwellwhenmycoworkersrespectmyculturalvalues,M=4.80,
SD=.52).75%oftherespondentseitheragreedorstronglyagreedthattheircoworkersselfconstrualisbetterthantheirfactualperception,i.e.
thanthewaytheyareperceivedbyotheremployees(M=3.90,SD=.85).However,whatisinterestingisthefactthatsuchperceptionsare
weakerasitcomestoconstruingtheselfinterdependentlywhatistypicalofEastAsiansasrepresentativesofcollectivisticculture.Inthatcase,
only30%oftheChineserespondedthattheircoworkersviewedthemselvesasbetterworkersthanthem(M=2.90,SD=1.25).Evenifa
majorityofemployeesindicatedthatsomeworkersdidnotwanttocommunicatetoothers(M=3.40,SD=1.19)andthatgossipingwascommon
intheirworkplace(M=3.70,SD=.98),acomparablenumberofthemrespondedthatthisfactdidnotderivefromculturaldifferences(M=2.25,
SD=1.16)norfromdisrespectingonesbeliefsorculturalvalues(M=2.10,SD=1.37),andthatitdidnotinfluencetheirwillingnessto
communicatewithemployeesfromdifferentcultures(M=1.65,SD=1.14).Suchresultsindicatethatevenifsomeoftheemployeesmentioned
thegossipingproblemortheydidfeelthattheircoworkersdidnotwanttocommunicatewiththembecauseoftheirculturalbackgrounds,there
seemstobenodirectcorrespondencebetweenstereotypicalperceptionofpeoplefromotherculturesandcommunicationataworkplace.
Nevertheless,aculturalbackgroundofthegossipingissueneedstobefurtherinvestigatedtosupportordisprovethatconclusion,andtoexplore
theextenttowhichitisanusvs.themissue.

Table3:Participantsviewsonstereotypesaffectingcommunication

Stereotypesincultureinfluencebusinesscommunicationbecause M SD
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 8/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Ilikeworkingwithpeoplefromdifferentculturalbackgrounds. 4.25 1.02

Mycoworkersthinktheyarebetterworkersthantheyare. 3.90 .85

Mycoworkersthinktheyarebetterworkersthanme. 2.90 1.25

Someworkersdonotwanttotalktoothers. 3.40 1.19

Irespectculturalvaluesofmycoworkers. 4.80 .41

Therearegroupsofworkerswhogossipaboutothers. 3.70 .98

Ifeelwellwhenmycoworkersrespectmyculturalvalues. 4.80 .52

Someworkersdonotwanttocommunicatewithmebecauseofmyculturalbackground. 2.25 1.16

Idonotwanttocommunicatewithpeoplefromothercultures. 1.65 1.14

Somepeopledonotrespectmybeliefsandculturalvalues. 2.10 1.37

1stronglydisagree,5stronglyagree

5.3CulturalBasisforCommunicationProblems
Whenrespondingtothequestion:Haveyoueverhadacommunicationproblemthatresultedfromculturaldifferences?Ifyes,whatkindof
problemwasit?,30%oftheparticipantspointedoutthatsuchdifferencesimpededtheirprofessionalduties,andmostofthemdidnotregard
themasafactorthatcoulddiscouragethemfromwork(M=2.30,SD=1.22).Interestingly,mostofthem(55%)respondedthatcultural
differencesledtoargumentswiththeircoworkers(M=3.05,SD=1.19)andthatthemainsourceofthoseargumentswasadisrespectfortheir
culturebytheirinteractants,whichevenmadethemupset.(M=2.90,SD=1.45).Itshouldbenotedherethatthesourcesofargumentare
differentinthecaseofcommunicationwithcoworkersandsupervisors.Namely,asitcomestocoworkers,thereismoderatecorrelationbetween
thestatementIarguedwithmycoworkerandthestatementsIunintentionallyoffendedthepersonItalkedto(t=.478,p<0.05)andIwas
personallyoffendedbythepersonItalkedto(t=.434,p<0.05),whilstthereisstrongcorrelationbetweenthestatementIarguedwithmy
managerandthestatementsIunintentionallyoffendedthepersonItalkedto(t=.469,p<0.05)andIfeltguilty(t=.611,p<0.01).
Accordingly,thesecorrelationsrevealthatwhencommunicatingwiththeircoworkers,theparticipantsseemtobesensitivetoboththeirownand
theirinteractantsculturalbackgrounds,andinthecaseofcommunicationwithsupervisors,theytendtobelesssensitivetotheirowncultural
backgroundsandseemtofocusonthesupervisorsperspective(argumentsleadtoasenseofguilt).Thattendencyprovespowerdistance,i.e.a

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 9/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

measureoftheinterpersonalpowerorinfluencebetweenthebossandsubordinateasperceivedbythelesspowerfulofthetwo(Hofstede2001:
83),tobedeeplyembeddedinsuchahighlycollectivisticcultureasChineseone.

Itisevidentthatalthoughtheemployeesdidnotpayanyspecialattentiontocommunicationproblemsandtreatedthemassomethingnaturalata
workplace,theymanifestedacaringattitudetotheirownculture,whichmeansthatrespectingonesculturalvaluesisasignificantpsychological
needtobesatisfiedforthesakeofemployeeswellbeingandpositiveattitudestowardscoworkers.

Table4:Participantsnegativeexperienceswithculturaldifferencesincommunication

Ihadacommunicationproblembecauseofculturaldifferences,whichresultedinasituationinwhich M SD

Icouldnotdomyjob. 2.50 1.28

Iarguedwithmycoworker. 3.05 1.19

Iarguedwithmymanager. 2.60 1.54

Ifeltbadlyanddidnotfeellikeworking. 2.30 1.22

IunintentionallyoffendedthepersonItalkedto. 2.85 1.39

Ifeltguilty. 2.05 1.32

IwaspersonallyoffendedbythepersonItalkedto. 2.50 1.43

Ifeltupsetbecausemyculturewasoffended. 2.90 1.45

1stronglydisagree,5stronglyagree

WhenaskedthequestionWhatdoyouthinkcausesmostproblemsincommunicationandhowcantheybeavoidedinthefuture?,mostofthe
employeessurveyedpositivelyresponded(seeTable5)tothewholerepertoireofsolutionsthatmaybeadoptedtomitigatenegativeeffectsof
interculturalcontactsbothformalonessuchascommunication/languagetrainings(M=4.47,SD=.51)andmeetings(M=4.21,SD=1.03),and
informalonessuchasconversationsandsocialevents(M=3.79,SD=.98).Apparently,mostimportantforthereductionofinterculturaltensions
istheneedtohaveonesculturerespected(M=4.68,SD=.58),asitwasexpressedby95%ofparticipants.Thatneedseemscongruentwiththe
conceptwillingnesstocommunicatewhichasregardscommunicatinginL2(hereinEnglish)isareadinesstoenterintodiscourseata
particulartimewithaspecificpersonorpersonsusingaL2(MacIntyreetal.1998:547).Suchwillingnessisfoundedonthesatisfactionof
interactantspsychologicalneeds,themostbasiconebeingrespect:Whenpeopleoftwodifferentculturesinteract,culturalfluencyisthe
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 10/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

appropriateapplicationofrespect,empathy,flexibility,patience,interest,curiosity,openness,thewillingnesstosuspendjudgment,tolerancefor
ambiguity,andsenseofhumor(Inoue2007).Indeed,whengivenaquestionaboutarecentworkrelatedexperienceinwhichcommunicationwas
particularlyeffectiveorineffective,oneofthespecialistsmentionedthathis/herrecentcommunicationexperiencewithacoworkerwaseffective
duetobodylanguageshowingrespect:()consideringothersneedsandfeelingswhenmakingadecisionisshowingrespecttoothers.Inmy
opinionshowingrespect,beingfriendlyandasmileareeffectiveduringcommunication.

Table5:Participantsresponsestopossiblewaysofavoidinginterculturalcommunicationproblems

Communicationproblemscanbeavoidedinthefuturewhen M SD

Sometrainingsondifferentculturesareorganized. 4.47 .51

Alltheworkersinmycompanyaregiveninstructionsabouthowtocommunicatewithpeoplefromdifferentcultural 4.05 1.03


backgrounds.

Myculturalbackgroundisrespected. 4.68 .58

Alltheworkerswhocommunicateinaforeignlanguagelearnitmore. 4.37 .76

Workerssocializemoreafterwork. 3.79 .98

Workersfromthesamedepartmenthaveregularmeetingsduringwhichtheycantalkabouttheirproblems. 4.21 1.03

ThereisafriendlypersontowhomIcantalkwheneverIhaveaproblemwithcommunicationwithmycoworkers. 4.16 .96

1stronglydisagree,5stronglyagree

6.Discussion
Inourpaper,wehaveaimedatexaminingemployeesorientationtotheprocessofinterculturalcommunicationinaglobalcompany,andsuch
culturalfoundationofcommunicationbarriersasstereotypesandselfandotherconstruals.Theanalysesofresultsofthequestionnairesurvey
conductedamong20ChinesewhitecollarworkersfromaChinesesubsidiaryofaEuropeanglobalcorporationallowedustoanswerthree
researchquestions.

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 11/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Inthecaseofthefirstquestionaboutparticipantsexperiencesofandopinionsontheinfluenceofculturaldiversityontheprocessof
communicationinaworkplace,wefoundthattherespondentshadencounterednegativeeffectsofculturaldiversityintheirworkplace,being
reflectedindifficultiesincommunicationwithsupervisorsandcoworkersfromdifferentculturesbothduringworkhoursaswellasafterwork,
whichinsomeinstancesevenleadtoadecreaseintheirperformanceandfrequentlytoadecreaseoftheirsatisfaction.Howevernegativethe
effectscouldbe,theparticipantsmanifestedpositiveattitudestowardinterculturalinteractionsandpointedoutculturaladaptabilityasameansto
overcomethoseeffects.

Astothequestionaboutparticipantsopinionsontheinfluenceofstereotypicalperceptionsofemployeesonprofessionalcommunicationandthe
satisfactionoftheirpsychologicalneeds,theresultsclearlyshowthatinChineseculture,wherecollectivisticmodeofmakingdecisions
dominates,aswellasperceivingtheselfinterdependently,surveyparticipantsmanifestthefollowingbeliefs:

i.thebasicsourceofbarriersininterculturalcommunicationisignoringorevendisrespectingtheculturaldiversityofinteractants,aswellas
stereotypicalperceptionoftheemployeeswithadifferentculturalbackground(suchopinionsprevailasMycoworkersbelievetheyare
betterworkersthantheyreallyare),andthat
ii.communicationproblemsininterculturalinteractionscanbeavoidedwhenadifferentculturalbackgroundisrespected.

Therefore,theresultsconfirmedthecollectivisticwayofconstruingtheselfinterdependentlythatistypicaloftheChinese,namelyevenifthe
respondentsbelievedthattheircoworkershadconstruedtheimagesofthemselvesthathadbeenbetterthaninreality(infactbetterthaninthe
eyesoftherespondents),theirownselfconstrualsseemedtoberathercollectivistic,i.e.theydidnotperceivethemselvesasbetterthantheirco
workers.Importantly,directcorrespondencebetweenstereotypicalperceptionofcoworkerswithdifferentculturalbackgroundsand
communicationbarriersataworkplacewerenotspotted.

Theanswerstothelastquestionaboutparticipantsopinionsonthesourcesofcommunicationproblemsandthemeanstoovercometheminthe
futureshowedthattheChineserespondentssawculturaldifferencesasafactorhinderingtheperformanceoftheirprofessionalduties,yetnot
strongenoughtodiscouragethemfromwork.Mostrespondentsregardeddisrespectingculturalvaluestobethegreatestsourceofdissatisfaction
anddecreaseintheirwellbeingandinpositiveattitudestowardscoworkers.Theresultsshowedthatthesurveyparticipantslookedforwardto
culturaltrainingsaswellasformalandinformalmeetingsatwhichtheycouldget(themselvesandothers)familiarwithotherculturesbetter
(whichcorrespondswithculturaladaptabilitybeingawaytoovercomenegativeeffectsofinterculturalinteractionproblems)sothattheircultures
couldberespectedmore.

7.Conclusion
Webelievethatspecialattentionshouldbepaidtoculturespecificfactorswhencharacterizingtheefficacyofcommunication,becausenumerous
investigationsindicatethattheyarekeyandpositivefactorsthatenhancethenegotiationanddecisionmakingprocesses,stimulatethe
performanceofmulticulturalteamsmembers,andincreasetheirsatisfactionanddecreaseworkabsence(see,e.g.,Clampitt&Downs1993Daily
etal.1996Daily&Steiner1998Schachaf2008Wilczewski2015).

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 12/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Therelationbetweenculture/culturaldiversityandtheefficacyoftheircommunicationinamulticulturalenvironmentneedstobecontinuously
exploredduetoglobalizationprocessesandinternationalizationofEuropeancompanies,especiallyinthecontextoftherecentfrequentpolitical
attemptstogetChineseandEuropeanbusinesscollaborationcloserthaneverbefore(e.g.byconsolidatingseaandlandlinksbetweenChinaand
Europe,seetheChineseconceptofNewSilkRoad).Thisiswhyitisworthdivertingresearchersattentionfrominterculturalcommunication
practicesbetweenEastAsians,AmericansandWesternEuropeansontoCentralEuropeans,asnewinternationalbusinesseswillpossiblyplace
manyofCentralEuropeanemployeesinnewculturalcontexts.

Beingawareofculturaldifferencesamongtheircoworkerspreparesemployeestounderstandtheirbehaviorbetterandtofacecommunication
obstaclesaswellasunderstandculturallyrelevantpatternsofdoingbusinessinaninternationalcontext.Thisisnotonlycrucialforeffective
communicationinworkteams,orcooperationbetweenemployeesandemployers,butalsoforcooperationwiththecompanysinternational
subsidiaries,fornegotiationwithstakeholdersandothercompanies,aswellasforincreasingcommunicationpotentialinglobalcorporations.

References
AblonczyMihlyka,L.(2009).Businesscommunicationbetweenpeoplewithdifferentculturalbackgrounds.ProceedingsoftheConferenceof
theInternationalJournalofArtsandSciences,1(19),121129.

Abramson,N.R.,Lane,H.W.Nagai,H.,&Takagi,H.(1993).AcomparisonofCanadianandJapanesecognitivestyles:Implicationsfor
managementinteraction.JournalofInternationalBusinessStudies,24(3),575588.

Aune,MSKKS.,Hunter,J.E.,Kim,HJ.,&Kim,JS.(2001).Theeffectofcultureandselfconstrualsonpredispositionstowardverbal
communication.HumanCommunicationResearch,27(3),382408.

Benedict,R.(1934).PatternsofCulture.NewYork:Mifflin.

Chaney,L.H.,&Martin,J.S.(2011).InterculturalBusinessCommunication(4thed.).UpperSaddleRiver,NJ:PearsonPrenticeHall.

Chao,G.T.(2000).Multilevelissuesandculture:Anintegrativeview.InK.J.Klein,&S.W.J.Kozlowski(Eds),MultilevelTheory,Research,
andMethodsinOrganizations:Foundations,ExtensionsandNewDirections(pp.308348).SanFrancisco,CA:JosseyBass.

Clampitt,P.G.,&Downs,W.(1993).Employeeperceptionsoftherelationshipbetweencommunicationandproductivity:AFieldStudy.Journal
ofBusinessCommunication,30(1),528.

DAndrade,R.G.(1984),Culturalmeaningsystems.InR.Shweder,&R.LeVine(Eds),CultureTheory:EssaysonMind,Self,andEmotion(pp.
88119).Cambridge,U.K.:CambridgeUniversityPress.

Daily,B.F.,&Steiner,R.L.(1998).Theinfluenceofgroupdecisionsupportsystemsoncontributionandcommitmentlevelsinmulticulturaland
culturallyhomogeneousdecisionmakinggroups.ComputersinHumanBehavior,14(1),147162.
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 13/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Daily,B.,Whatley,A.,Ash,S.R.,&Steiner,R.L.(1996).Theeffectsofagroupdecisionsupportsystemonculturallydiverseandculturally
homogeneousgroupdecisionmaking.Information&Management,30(6),281289.

Domurat,A.,Zajenkowska,A.,&Grzegorzewska,M.(2012).ConfucianandProtestantworkethicsamongPolishandKoreanemployeesand
smallbusinessowners.JournalofInterculturalCommunication,28.RetrievedSeptember15,2015,from
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr28/domurat.htm

Ferraro,G.P.(2002).TheCulturalDimensionofInternationalBusiness(4thEdition).UpperSaddleRiver,NJ:PrenticeHall.

Geertz,C.(1973).TheInterpretationofCultures.NewYork:Basic.

Gernet,J.(1995).BuddhisminChineseSociety:AnEconomicHistoryfromtheFifthtotheTenthCenturies.NewYork:ColumbiaUniversity
Press.

Gut,A.,&Wilczewski,M.(2015).Porwnawczebadaniakognitywne(Owpywieczynnikwkulturowozalenychnapoznaniespoeczne)
(ComparativeCognitiveResearchintheScopeoftheInfluenceofCultureSpecificFactorsonSocialCognition).InK.Morita(Ed.),Spotkania
PolonistykTrzechKrajwChiny,Korea,Japonia.Rocznik2014/2015(pp.117136),Tokyo:TUFS.

Habrajska,G.(1998),Prototypstereotypmetafora.InJ.Anusiewicz,&J.Bartmiski(Eds),Jzykakultura,Vol.12:Stereotypjakoprzedmiot
lingwistyki.Teoria,metodologia,analizyempiryczne(pp.116123).Wrocaw:TowarzystwoPrzyjaciPolonistykiWrocawskiej.

Hager,M.(2010).TeachingInterculturalCommunicationinaProfessionalLanguageCourse.GlobalBusinessLanguages,15.Retrieved
November27,2015,fromhttp://docs.lib.purdue.edu/gbl/vol15/iss1/9

Hill,C.W.(2005).InternationalBusinessCompetingintheGlobalMarketPlace(5thed.).NewYork:McGrawHill.

Hofstede,G.(2001).CulturesConsequences(2nded.).ThousandOaks:CA:Sage.

Inoue,Y.(2007).CulturalFluencyasaGuidetoEffectiveInterculturalCommunication:TheCaseofJapanandtheU.S.JournalofIntercultural
Communication,15.RetrievedNovember27,2015,fromhttp://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr15/inoue.htm

KalinowskaAndrian,K.(2006).PositiveOrganizationalScholarshipnowytrendwnaucezarzdzania.Zaproszeniedowiatapozytyww.E
mentor1(13).RetrievedJune16,2015,fromhttp://www.ementor.edu.pl/artykul/index/numer/13/id/235

Kitayama,S.,&Cohen,D.(2007).HandbookofCulturalPsychology.NewYork:GuilfordPress.

Kluckhohn,C.(1951).Thestudyofculture.InD.Lerner,&D.Harold(Eds),ThePolicySciences(pp.86101).Stanford,CA:Stanford
UniversityPress.

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 14/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Kobayashi,J.,&Viswat,L.(2011).Interculturalcommunicationcompetenceinbusiness:CommunicationbetweenJapaneseandAmericans.
JournalofInterculturalCommunication,26.RetrievedDecember30,2014,fromhttp://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr26/kobayashi26.htm

Kotorova,E.G.(2014).Describingcrossculturalspeechbehavior:Acommunicativepragmaticfieldapproach.ProcediaSocialandBehavioral
Sciences,154,184192.

Li,T.,&Moreira,G.O.(2009).TheinfluenceofConfucianismandBuddhismonChineseBusiness:ThecaseofAveiro,Portugal.Journalof
InterculturalCommunication,19.RetrievedDecember30,2014,fromhttp://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr19/tianbo.htm

Lillis,M.,&Tian,R.(2010).Culturalissuesinthebusinessworld:Ananthropologicalperspective.JournalofSocialSciences,6(1),99112.

Lim,TS.,&Choi,SH.(1996).InterpersonalrelationshipsinKorea.InW.B.Gudykunst,S.TingToomey,&T.Nishida(Eds),Communication
inPersonalRelationshipsAcrossCultures(pp.122136).ThousandOaks,CA:Sage.

Lippmann,W.(1922).PublicOpinion.NewYork:MacMillan.

MacIntyre,P.D.,Drnyei,Z.,Clment,R.,&Noels,K.A.(1998).ConceptualizingwillingnesstocommunicateinaL2:asituationalmodelofL2
confidenceandaffiliation.TheModernLanguageJournal,82(4),545562.

Markus,H,&Kitayama,S.(1991).Cultureandtheself:Implicationsforcognition,emotion,andmotivation.PsychologicalReview,98(2),224
253.

Markus,H.R.,Mullally,P.,&Kitayama,S.(1997).Selfways:Diversityinmodesofculturalparticipation.InU.Neisser,&D.Jopling(Eds),The
ConceptualSelfinContext:Culture,Experience,Selfunderstanding(1361).Cambridge:CambridgeUniversityPress.

Matsumoto,D.(2006).Cultureandnonverbalbehavior.InV.Manusov,&M.L.Patterson(Eds),TheSAGEHandbookofNonverbal
Communication(pp.219235).ThousandOaks,CA:SAGEPublications.

McGarty,C.,Yzerbyt,V.Y.,&Spears,R.(2002),StereotypesasExplanations:TheFormationofMeaningfulBeliefsaboutSocialGroups.
Cambridge,UK:CambridgeUniversityPress.

Merkin,R.S.(2005).Theinfluenceofmasculinityfemininityoncrossculturalfacework.JournalofInterculturalCommunicationResearch,34,
267289.

Michajowa,K.(2007).Opozycjaswj/obcywksztatowaniustereotypuPolakawrdBugarwzamieszkaychwPolsce.InJ.Bartmiski(Ed.),
Etnolingwistyka.Problemyjzykaikultury,19(pp.175190).Lublin:WydawnictwoUniwersytetuMariiCurieSkodowskiej.

Neuliep,J.W.(2011).InterculturalCommunication.AContextualApproach(5thed.).ThousandOaks,CA:SAGEPublications,Inc.

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 15/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Nguyen,H.H.D,HuyLe,&Boles,T.(2010).Individualismcollectivismandcooperation:Acrosssocietyandcrosslevelexamination.
Negotiation&ConflictManagementResearch,3(3),179204.

Nisbett,R.E.(2007).EasternandWesternwaysofperceivingtheworld.InY.Shoda,D.Cervone,&
G.Downey(Eds),PersonsinContext:BuildingaScienceoftheIndividual(pp.6283).NewYork:GuilfordPress.

Okoro,E.(2013).Internationalorganizationsandoperations:Ananalysisofcrossculturalcommunicationeffectivenessandmanagement
orientation.JournalofBusiness&Management,1(1),113.

Park,MS.(1993).CommunicationStylesinTwoDifferentCultures:KoreanandAmerican.Seoul,Korea:HanShinPublishingCompany.

Permyakova,T.M.(2015).TheImageofRussianBusinessthroughLinguisticStereotypicalMeans.JournalofInterculturalCommunication,37.
RetrievedNovember27,2015,fromhttp://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr37/permyakova.html

PhuongMai,N.,Terlouw,C.,&Pilot,A.(2005).CooperativelearningvsConfucianheritageculturescollectivism:confrontationtorevealsome
culturalconflictsandmismatch.AsiaEuropeJournal,3(3),403419.

Ralston,D.A.,Egri,C.P.,Riddle,L.,Butt,A.,Dalgic,T.&Brock,D.M.(2012).ManagerialvaluesinthegreaterMiddleEast:Similaritiesand
differencesacrosssevencountries.InternationalBusinessReview,21,480492.

Ramasubramanian,S.(2011).TelevisionExposure,ModelMinorityPortrayals,andAsianAmericanStereotypes:AnExploratoryStudy.Journal
ofInterculturalCommunication,26.RetrievedNovember27,2015,fromhttp://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr26/ramasubramanian.htm

Robertson,C.J.,AlKhatib,J.A.,AlHabib,M.,&Lanoue,D.(2001).BeliefsaboutworkintheMiddleEastandtheconvergenceversus
divergenceofvalues.JournalofWorldBusiness,36(3),223244.

Rozkwitalska,M.(2011).Barierywzarzdzaniumidzykulturowym.Perspektywafiliizagranicznychkorporacjitransnarodowych.Warszawa:
WoltersKluwer.

Schwartz,S.H.(1994).Beyondindividualism/collectivism:Newculturaldimensionsofvalues.InU.Kim,H.C.Triandis,S..Kagitibasi,G.
Choi,&Yoon(Eds),IndividualismandCollectivism:Theory,Method,andApplications(pp.85119).ThousandOaks,CA:Sage.

Shachaf,P.(2008).Culturaldiversityandinformationandcommunicationtechnologyimpactsonglobalvirtualteams:Anexploratorystudy.
InformationandManagement,45(2),131142.

Shaumjan,S.(2006),Signs,Mind,andReality:ATheoryofLanguageastheFolkModeloftheWorld.AmsterdamPhiladelphia:John
BenjaminsPublishingCompany.

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 16/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Stahl,G.K.,Maznevski,M.,Voigt,A.,&Jonsen,K.(2010).Unravelingtheeffectsofculturaldiversityinteams:Ametaanalysisofresearchon
multiculturalworkgroups.JournalofInternationalBusinessStudies,41,690709.

Stevens,F.G.,Plaut,V.C.,&SanchezBurks,J.(2008).Unlockingthebenefitsofdiversity.Allinclusivemulticulturalismandpositive
organizationalchange.TheJournalofAppliedBehavioralScience,44(1),116133.

Swaidan,Z.,&Hayes,L.A.(2005).Hofstedetheoryandcrossculturalethicsconceptualization,review,
researchagenda.JournalofAmericanAcademyofBusiness,6(2),1016.

Tang,J.,&Ward,A.(2003).TheChangingFaceofChineseManagement.NewYork:Routledge.

TingToomey,S.,Gao,G.,Trubisky,P.,Yang,Z.,Kim,HS.,Lin,SL.,&iNishida,T.(1991).Culture,facemaintenance,andstylesofhandling
interpersonalconflict:Astudyinfivecultures.InternationalJournalofConflictManagement,2,275296.

Triandis,H.C.(1988).Collectivismvs.individualism:Areconceptualizationofabasicconceptincrossculturalsocialpsychology.InG.K.
Verma,&C.Bagley(Eds),CrossculturalStudiesofPersonality,AttitudesandCognition(pp.6095).London:Macmillan.

Triandis,H.C.(1994).CultureandSocialBehavior.NewYork:McGrawHill.

Triandis,H.C.,Bontempo,R.,Villareal,M.J.,Asai,M.,&Lucca,N.(1988).Individualismandcollectivism:Crossculturalperspectivesonself
ingrouprelationships.JournalofPersonalityandSocialPsychology,54(2),323338.

Tylor,E.B.(1958[1871,1873]).TheOriginsofCultureandReligioninPrimitiveCulture,VolumesIandIIofthe1873editionofPrimitive
Culture.NewYork:Harper&Brothers.

Weber,M.(1990).InterculturalStereotypesandtheTeachingofGerman.DieUnterrichtspraxis/TeachingGerman,(23)2,132141.

Wilczewski,M.(2015).Interculturalcommunicationcompetenceasasuccessfactorforamanageroperatinginamultinationalenvironment.InS.
Grucza,&J.Alnajjar(Eds),KommunikationinmultikulturellenProjektteams(pp.5171).Frankfurta.M.:PeterLang.

Yook,E.L.,&Ahn,B.L.(1999).ComparisonofapprehensionincommunicationbetweenKoreansandAmericans.PerceptualandMotorSkills,
89,161164.

Acknowledgements
ThispaperissupportedbytheNationalScienceCentresgrant(Poland)HARMONIA6(UMO2014/14/M/HS1/00436)fortheresearchproject
entitledTheinvolvementoflanguage,culturespecificfactorsandfolkintuitionsinmindreadingactivityandsocialcognition.

WewouldliketothankalltheChinesebusinesspeoplewhoagreedtodevotetheirprecioustimetoparticipateinthequestionnairesurvey.

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 17/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

WealsowouldliketoexpressourgratitudetothereviewersofJournalofInterculturalCommunicationfortheirconstructivesuggestions.

Appendix
BackgroundQuestionnaire
Nationality_________

Mothertongue_________

Gender_________

Positionatwork_________

Department_________

Yearsofemploymentinthepresentcompany_________

HowmuchEnglishdoyouuseatwork?_________%

Whatotherlanguage(s)doyouuseatworkandhowmuch?

(a)language_________howmuch_________%(b)language_________howmuch_________%

GeneralInstruction

Readeachofthestatementsbelowandwritedownthenumberthatbestdescribesyouforeachofthem.

5=stronglyagree

4=agree

3=undecided

2=disagree

1=stronglydisagree
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 18/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

1)CulturalDifferencesinaWorkEnvironment
Cultureisimportantforme._________

Cultureisimportantformycoworkers._________

Culturaldifferencescauseproblemsinbusinesscommunicationbetweenpeoplewithdifferentculturalbackgrounds._________

Peoplewithdifferentculturalbackgroundscommunicatewithdifficulties._________

Differentculturesfavordifferentmeansofcommunication._________

Culturaldifferencesmakemyworkmoredifficult._________

Culturaladaptabilityisimportantinbusinesscommunicationintheglobalworkplace._________

Stereotypesincultureinfluencebusinesscommunications._________

Inwhatsituationsareculturaldifferencesobserved?

WhenItalktomycoworkers._________

WhenItalktomysuperior._________

WhenIwork._________

WhenIhaveabreakatwork._________

WhenImeetwithmycoworkersafterwork._________

Other_________

2)StereotypesinInterculturalCommunicationContacts
Howdoyouunderstandthestatement:Stereotypesincultureinfluencebusinesscommunication?

Ilikeworkingwithpeoplefromdifferentculturalbackgrounds._________

Mycoworkersthinktheyarebetterworkersthantheyare._________
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 19/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Mycoworkersthinktheyarebetterworkersthanme._________

Someworkersdonotwanttotalktoothers._________

Irespectculturalvaluesofmycoworkers._________

Therearegroupsofworkerswhogossipaboutothers._________

Ifeelwellwhenmycoworkersrespectmyculturalvalues._________

Someworkersdonotwanttocommunicatewithmebecauseofmyculturalbackground._________

Idonotwanttocommunicatewithpeoplefromothercultures._________

Somepeopledonotrespectmybeliefsandculturalvalues._________

Other_________

3)CulturalBasisforCommunicationProblems
Towhatdegreethefollowingendingsofthestatement:

Ihadacommunicationproblembecauseofculturaldifferences,whichresultedinasituationinwhich,

aretrueforyou?

Icouldnotdomyjob._________

Iarguedwithmycoworker._________

Iarguedwithmymanager._________

Ifeltbadlyanddidnotfeellikeworking._________

IunintentionallyoffendedthepersonItalkedto._________

Ifeltguilty._________

IwaspersonallyoffendedbythepersonItalkedto._________
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 20/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

Ifeltupsetbecausemyculturewasoffended._________

Other_________

Howdoyouthinkyourcommunicationproblemscanbeavoidedinthefuture?

Sometrainingsondifferentculturesareorganized._________

Alltheworkersinmycompanyaregiveninstructionsabouthowtocommunicatewithpeoplefromdifferentculturalbackgrounds._________

Myculturalbackgroundisrespected._________

Alltheworkerswhocommunicateinaforeignlanguagelearnitmore._________

Workerssocializemoreafterwork._________

Workersfromthesamedepartmenthaveregularmeetingsduringwhichtheycantalkabouttheirproblems._________

ThereisafriendlypersontowhomIcantalkwheneverIhaveaproblemwithcommunicationwithmycoworkers._________

Other_________

AbouttheAuthors
ArkadiuszGut,Ph.D.,isanAssociateProfessorintheDepartmentsofPhilosophyandSinology,andaChairmanofCognitiveStudiesattheJohn
PaulIICatholicUniversityofLublin.

MichaWilczewski,Ph.D.,isanAssistantProfessorintheDepartmentofAppliedLinguisticsattheUniversityofWarsaw,andaVisitingScholar
intheDepartmentofManagement,SocietyandCommunicationatCopenhagenBusinessSchool.

OlegGorbaniuk,Ph.D.,isanAssociateProfessorintheInstituteofPsychologyattheJohnPaulIICatholicUniversityofLublin.

Authorsaddress
Pleasedirectallcorrespondenceregardingthisarticleto:

MichaWilczewski
POBox512
http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 21/22
6/24/2017 CulturalDifferences,StereotypesandCommunicationNeedsinInterculturalCommunicationinaGlobalMulticulturalEnvironmen

UniversityofWarsaw
FacultyofAppliedLinguistics
InstituteofSpecializedandInterculturalCommunication
Szturmowa4ST,02678Warsaw
Poland
Email:m.wilczewski@uw.edu.pl

JournalofInterculturalCommunication,ISSN14041634,issue43,March2017.
URL:http://immi.se/intercultural

http://www.immi.se/intercultural/nr43/gorbaniuk.html 22/22