Culture hides much more than it reveals, and strangely enough, what it hides, it hides most effectively from its own participants

Edward T. Hall, US-American Anthropologist, Father of Intercultural Communication

In this intercultural programme designed as a mix of facilitation, coaching and training we will focus on your intercultural competence development. You will have a chance to get to know various communication styles across cultures and the situational strategies to deal with conflicts in the unknown surroundings. Additionally, you will identify your personal time management and have a look at time perception in cultures of your choice. Above all, you will verify your expectations towards other working styles and define strategies on how to bridge the cultural gaps and enjoy working across cultures.

Why storytelling in the intercultural programs?

When we consider that „culture as a set of stories that we enter“ (Jérôme Bruner) we immediately understand the importance and value of sharing stories in the cooperation across cultures.  

I use the terms storytelling, story sharing, story listening and re-narrating because the narrative approach covers much more than just “telling stories”.

Why storytelling in the intercultural programs?

Because it allows discovering cultural roots from multiple perspectives

Because it offers insights into complexity of multicultural identities

Because it suppports zooming in and out and perspective change

Because it adds the emotional layer to the cognitive level 

Because it serves as means of transmiting cultures

Because it deals with new stories of belonging

Because it initiates change processes

Because it moves hearts

Your time investment results in:

  • self-reflection on your cultural influences and strategies on how you can build bridges and create synergies while cooperating with people from other cultures,
  • developing a deeper understanding of your own cultural influences which is the first step towards understanding other points of view and different behavior patterns,
  • widening your horizons and the ability to see different situations from different perspectives,
  • focusing on ambiguity tolerance while working with colleagues across cultures,
  • defining realistic expectations and deciding on the best strategies how to create synergies,
  • finding the right balance between your values and corporate values perceived from different perspectives in different countries.

What are your further take aways?

• asking empowering questions,

• emphasizing curiosity and incorporating “surprising moments”, 

• out of box thinking by thought provoking story sharing and 

• daring to experiment. 

Stories can transform from the sources of knowledge to sources of wisdom, inspiration, and creativity and therefore can empower you, your clients and employees to collaborate skillfully across cultures, enhance teamwork in the multicultural settings and go smoothly and more consciously through the relocation process.

Come to explore new possibilities on how you can design your intercultural programs, by incorporating:

• learnings journeys,

• techniques to tell and share stories, such as in media res, the mountain, etc.

• creative methods, 

• visual storytelling

• interactive storytelling and co-creating stories,

• the hero’s journey

• re-narration and best scenario of the future practices

If you got curious, I would like to invite you to read more on power of Storytelling in the intercultural communication in the following books:

• Sell, J. (2017): Storytelling for Intercultural Understanding and Intercultural Sensitivity Development, in: Chlopczyk, J. Beyond Storytelling, Springer Verlag (Text in English)

• Sell, J. (2017): Segel hoch und auf zu neuen Ufern. Eine Reise durch die Welt der Storytelling Methoden im interkulturellen Kontext, in: Schach, A. Storytelling. Geschichten in Text, Bild und Film, Springer Verlag (Text in German)</p>

• For more details on storytelling methods, check my article published in SIETAR Europa Journal 2015 SE_Journal_Sept-Nov_2015 (in English)

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Set the sails and discover what is behind your horizons. I look forward to seeing you.