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TO: The Manager FROM: SUBJECT: A summary report of findings about British nonverbal and verbal communication styles and utilizing the report to enhance inter-branch communication Statement of the Problem It is crucial for the American visitors to be aware and understand the cultural differences between their own communication strategies and that of the British. A lot of misunderstandings and misinterpretations in the communication process occur when people with varying cultural background overlook these differences. The result of this exploratory report can reap great rewards for the Americans when dealing with colleagues in London. Strong interpersonal and presentation skills based on knowledge about the accepted verbal and nonverbal communication strategies of the host will mean better communication and enhanced interpersonal relationship for both parties.
Exploratory Report Finding / s Spoken/Written Language The British business culture is a lot like our own except for some details on how they do things; Americans are more casual while the British requires strict formality. Although the American and the British shared about 90 % of their language vocabulary, there are enough differences which can give rise to communication problems in terms of the spelling and vocabulary. The spelling differences are small and actually easily discernible yet it is vital to know the difference. The real problem will actually be on the vocabulary which tends to confuse the both users.
Some objects are referred to using different terms while there are also words and phrases which are used in both languages yet have different meanings. Britons are very private and reserved who tend to repress expression of emotions in public. They do not like to answer too personal questions such as "Where are you from?" and "What do you do?" and one should never ask them about what one does for a living. Work related topics are never discussed when socializing; it would be impolite to do so. They never mix their social-personal life with their work. Work is work and when presenting a report, it should always include data and facts instead of opinions, because they tend to respond better to more factual information Since Americans and Britons have different approaches to business they also have different written communication style as well.
They differ from such a general aspect like spelling and vocabulary to as complicated as how to properly address a correspondence. The British are very meticulous when it comes to following formats for all written communication even informal emails and fax transmission. Gestures/ Work Ethics Culture is not the only determinant of the message in a nonverbal communication. The individual's personality, the context, and the relationship between both communicators also influence its meaning.
However, about 80 % of nonverbal language is most likely linked to a person's cultural background. What might be considered usual or polite behavior in one culture may be seen as unusual or impolite in another. The folly of foreigners visiting another culture is overlooking how gestures, facial expressions, eye contact, and the use of conversational distance affect communication. The key to interpreting another culture's style of communication is to study the unspoken language of that culture. The British concern for body language, touch preference, space orientation and facial expressions is almost like the Americans with little variation which implies that things are more formal in London.
Unlike Americans, they do not touch each other in public, for example a black slap or a high five like many most US residents do to congratulate each other is not appropriate. Too much gesturing is inappropriate and speaking with hands in pockets is impolite in England. The mode of dressing is considered a type of nonverbal communication because it can set the mood and seriousness of a meeting or gathering so dress for business interactions should be very formal. American culture views a job as a central part of defining who a person is, while the British think of work as simply a way to earn a living and pay for the things that really matter. British consider time valuable and a resource to be use efficiently.
Promptness is always expected and schedules are incorporated into their daily lives. Americans also give much value on time and see it as a commodity that should be used wisely. Although the respect they give promptness is not much as what the British culture bestows on it. Proposed Plan of Action People, because of their varying cultural traits and characteristics, are generally comfortable with other people who also have the same or similar communication styles to their own. When one person's communication styles match that of another, there is an increased comfort and a high probability of working well together. Being familiar with the London counterparts communication styles and understanding the variations in terms of our own manner and approach will erase any difficulty we might encounter when interacting with them.
With the knowledge, we can avoid any intercultural communication misunderstanding. Comprehension of the major differences before interaction occurs is important to avoid offending the British counterparts. Reference List Burnett, Rebecca. (1990). Technical Communication. 2 nd ed. Belmont, California: Wadsworth Publishing Company. Lustig, Myron W. , and Jolene Koester. (2006) Intercultural Competence: Interpersonal Communication across Cultures.
Boston: Pearson Education. Morrison, Terri, Conaway, W. A. & Dress, J. J. (1997). Dun & Bradstreet's Guide to Doing Business around the World. Paramus: Prentice Hall.
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