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How to Identify & Tackle Islamophobia in the Workplace

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If you are in a leadership, management, HR or DEI role and would like to understand Islamophobia and its potential impact on your Muslim employees, then this guide is for you.

Anti-Muslim bias, discrimination against Muslims and fear, hatred of, or prejudice towards Muslims - i.e. Islamophobia  - is a social problem.

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Why Do Americans Smile So Much?

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Researchers believe they have finally discovered why the wide, white-teethed smile is so important in American culture - immigrants and cultural diversity.

Across different cultures, a smile can mean many things.

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How Do People Usually Create Disharmony in Multicultural Teams?

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Multicultural teams are now the norm within many of our larger companies, organisations and brands.

Challenges relating to communication, trust and morale within culturally diverse teams are common.

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Is the London Cockney Accent Dying due to Multicultural English?

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Accents are an amazing window onto our history.  As accents die, so too are accents born in response to changes in our environment.

In ‘The Lost Cockney Voice’ available on podcast via Radio 4 downloads, Cole Moreton talks about the unique cockney accent of his grandmother’s era.

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How to Avoid Cultural Appropriation & Promote Cultural Awareness Instead

How to Avoid Cultural Appropriation & Promote Cultural Awareness Instead

If your introduction to the topic of cultural appropriation was due to a celebrity, such as Pharrell Williams, being slammed for wearing Native American headwear,  Zac Effron, being called out for sporting dreadlocks, or Katy Perry, being criticised for performing as a Geisha, then you're not alone. 

Once upon a time, cultural appropriation was something theorised and discussed solely at universities.

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How Does Culture Affect The Way We Tell Lies?

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Researchers believe they have discovered a link between someone's culture and the language they use when they are telling lies.

Psychologists, led by Professor Paul Taylor of Lancaster University in the UK, have just published the findings of their research, entitled "Culture moderates changes in linguistic self-presentation and detail provision when deceiving others", in Royal Society Open Science.

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Cross-Cultural Tips for Remote and Virtual Teams

Cross-Cultural Tips for Remote and Virtual Teams

The development of competent remote and virtual teams is now a big priority for most training departments. 

Adapting to a world in which travel is restricted and social distancing is required makes the ability to conduct business virtually across cultures, countries and time zones essential.

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3 Stunningly Simple Tips to Create Trust in Cross-Cultural Teams

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Culturally diverse teams are becoming more and more the norm as international businesses continue to hire in talent from around the globe.

Anyone who has worked in a multicultural team knows that this comes with challenges.

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Pearson Education Slapped for Sloppy Approach to Cultural Awareness

Pearson Education Slapped for Sloppy Approach to Cultural Awareness

Have you read about the backlash Pearson Education received regarding a section about cultural awareness in a recent nursing textbook?

Initially, it started with a Facebook post outlining some crude cultural stereotypes, but the complaints soon grew large enough and loud enough for Pearson Education to take note.

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How to Adapt Training & Learning for a Global Workforce

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One of the effects of globalisation is that global brands are typically (and unavoidably) geographically spread.

Employing a global workforce is essential in today’s hypercompetitive marketplace.

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Does Living in a Multicultural Environment Give You Cross Cultural Skills?

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As cross-cultural training specialists, we sometimes come across resistance from delegates who have been obligated to attend a cultural awareness session by their boss, HR or the Learning and Development department.

Resistance may stem from many factors, not least of which may be that the benefits and background to the training course have not been fully communicated.

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What is Cross Cultural Training?

What is Cross Cultural Training?

'Culturally aware' professionals have a distinct advantage over their peers.

International businesses increasingly cite Cultural Competence as a core requirement during the recruitment process.

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Ramadan - Why are your Muslim colleagues are fasting and how can you support them?

Ramadan - Why are your Muslim colleagues are fasting and how can you support them?

For those of us working in multicultural environments, it’s fair to say that our colleagues may occasionally observe traditions with which we aren’t familiar. Ramadan is one such occasion.

In the same way that non Muslims may avoid asking questions for fear of intrusion, Muslims may equally avoid going into too much detail about Ramadan for fear of their colleagues not being interested.

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How Cultural Differences Can Destroy Customer Experience

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We all know that a positive customer experience (CX) drives repeat business, increased turnover and higher profits.

Companies who work hard to ensure their customers have a positive experience certainly reap the rewards of their efforts.

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British Culture Still Dictates Social Standing Through 'Class'

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Like it or not, British culture is still rooted in the class system.

Despite increased multiculturalism and economic growth eroding class consciousness a little, under the surface and, class still creates a big gap in UK society.

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Why do Medical Staff Require Training on Intercultural Awareness?

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Medical staff require professional interpreters and specific training on intercultural awareness, a new study published in the open access journal BMC Health Services Research suggests.

The authors reveal that doctors are dissatisfied with the treatment they provide to their non-native patients, and that they cite cultural differences and language barriers as the key factors causing the disappointment with the level of care that they provide.

Birgit Babitsch from the Berlin Institute of Gender in Medicine in Germany, and co-workers from Berlin and the UK, gathered the results of questionnaires completed by doctors working in the internal medicine and gynaecology departments of three Berlin hospitals.

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The Middle East Unveiled: A Review

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As someone in the intercultural field, a Muslim and having spent many years living, working and travelling throughout the Arab world, I am always keen to scrutinize literature aimed at business professionals seeking to improve their knowledge of the region.

Donna Marsh’s “The Middle East Unveiled” is a recent edition to such literature.

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Is Australia Tolerant of Other Cultures?

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In this blog, we give a synopsis of research carried out by the Challenging Racism Project.

As a cultural training company, this research is particularly interesting to us as it highlights the importance of cultural understanding in the battle against racism. 

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Culture and the Michigan Fish Test

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Stop! Before you read any further, and we explain the Michigan Fish Test, take a look at the picture for a few seconds.

Now look away and describe what you have just seen...

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New Zealand teachers to improve knowledge of Maori culture

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New Zealand Education Minster, Pita Sharples, has launched a new initiative ‘Tataiako’ that aims to help teachers to improve their understanding of Maori culture.

The resource, which acts as a set of guidelines, enables teachers to reflect on their past cultural sensitivity, to assess their existing knowledge,  and also to take responsibility for improving their cultural awareness for the future.

The important aspect of this particular programme is that it looks to establish a long-term reflexive attitude within the teaching commuity. The stress is not to enforce rules or test teachers, but instead to encourage them to contemplate upon their own experiences and behaviour throughout their careers.

New Zealand is popular with tourists from all over the world and is famous for accommodating and welcoming their needs. However, as with every country, it is vital that it considers the cultural integration of its own citizens before true pluralism can be achieved. It is not about a short-term activity-based integration or homogenizing of migrant communities, it is about the existing people of New Zealand having respect for the cultures of their own islands.

“Engaging in respectful working relationships with Maori students and their families” (quoted from: New Zealand news platform ‘Stuff’) is a key point taken from the new guidelines. It extends from the classroom discussion and integrity of cultural awareness to broader social integration of different communities within New Zealand (school) life. A further three guidelines outline “sincerity and respect towards Maori beliefs, language and culture”, taking responsibility for the learning of Maori students and the deliberate recognition of Maori student’s heritage as the core competancies for teachers to work for.

The main need is to understand the importance of identity to Maori students and their communities. Without understanding the unique perspectives of these children and young adults, you cannot fully engage in understanding how school and learning can and will come across to them.

Statistical evidence over the past decade has shown that students from a Maori background are falling behind those children from other ethnic groups. Improving cultural awareness will not only improve the continuity of Maori childrens’ lives, but will also make it easier for communication to exist between schools and Maori communities on the issue of education.

Finally, from the development of more culturally aware and skillful teachers should come the formulation a of more respectful, united and happy student population.

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