In our increasingly global and inter-culturally complex workplaces, it is clear that there are complex cultural elements that any coach must recognize, understand, and address!
Establish your third cultural space early in the coaching relationship, making sure that it reflects something of those you coach as well as something of yourself.
The prevalent ideas of motivation in executive coaching need some remapping, and cultural drivers should be tapped into.
The 1940 book Anna and the King relates the story of a Siamese king and a widowed British schoolteacher. On a quest to help Siam transcend global cultural and educational gaps among nations, this unlikely pair of strong-willed individuals bridge chasms of their own to forge a partnership as they embark upon a journey towards inter-cultural intelligence.
It happens all too often: One step forward; two steps backward. Red tape. More harm than help. Counterintuitive. Counterproductive. There is a reason we humans have come up with all kinds of descriptors for that phenomenon when a system or structure actually begins to undermine what it was originally intended to facilitate.
It may surprise you to learn what these colleagues found out about themselves as individuals and as a team when they studied Inter-Cultural Intelligence together. They certainly were surprised!
As we explained in Part 1, having engaged the services of a terrific web development company who mapped out and carefully documented all our requirements ahead of time according to our specifications, we were very hopeful until things unexpectedly fell apart, both transactionally and relationally.
This story took place several years ago. We had just made the decision to build our brand by enhancing our online presence.
In this second part of Talent Selection Missteps, we look at how to shore up weaknesses, capitalize on strengths, and navigate conflict to a satisfactory point of resolution
Another reason why Inter-Cultural Intelligence matters!
Again, comprehensive assessments can be useful tools! “Getting to the bottom of” your team, learning together what sort of strengths and focus areas might be influencing a team's performance both relationally and transactionally—these can be highly valuable exercises. But as useful as comprehensive assessments can be, they will inevitably cause challenges in intercultural contexts.
Are assessments helpful? Does their helpfulness depend on what construct is being assessed—e.g., personality differences, behavior styles, strengths and focus areas, etc.? Can they be as beneficial in intercultural situations as they are in mono-cultural settings? How might Inter-Cultural Intelligence and an understanding of the Three Colors of Worldview inform how we create and administer assessments?
From time to time, we share stories that illustrate lessons we have learned while facilitating workshops or developing global leaders. Our consultants and coaches certainly have not "arrived," and learning from our own and others' mistakes is part of the ongoing benefit of pursuing Inter-Cultural Intelligence Certification. Here is one of those stories—a tale of a temporary fail that happily resulted in a permanent improvement.
The Three Colors of Worldview is a simple but powerful discovery tool that addresses the beliefs and assumptions underlying culture and behavior. Here are seven of our popular articles on this topic.
Unlocking motivation helps you create a 3rd Cultural Space in which a coaching relationship can thrive.
In computer displays, millions of colors are created by mixing only three primary colors: Red, Green, and Blue. In a similar way, every culture can be evaluated as a mix of Honor-Shame, Guilt-Innocence, and Power-Fear worldviews.