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Culture

Do’s and Don'ts of Multicultural Work

In an increasingly globalized world, it is very common to find multicultural work teams, made up mostly of professionals from different countries, who contribute with great ideas and opinions to the company, since they greatly enrich the problem-solving.

However, we must bear in mind that cultural diversity has a price: we can face significant disadvantages that will become challenges that we must know how to manage to obtain the desired results.

 

One of the main obstacles is "Ethnocentrism", Each person is guided by the values instilled from childhood; as ethnocentric beings, we all believe that what we do is the best, and is valid, but we must let our work team know that this phenomenon can happen and we must be prepared to neutralize it. We must also understand that cultural diversity invites us to listen to ideas, values, positions, and beliefs that perhaps we had never considered, that is where good communication plays a very important role; people from different cultures not only have to face language barriers, but they must also understand the direct or indirect style of communication that each culture has.

 

So now I would like to invite you to ask yourself, is cultural diversity worth it? Of course! Although we must make some changes to adapt, it is well known that cultural diversity brings broader horizons, since it allows us to be open to new ideas and also see things from other perspectives. On the other hand, numerous studies have shown that multicultural teams have greater creative potential and greater capacity for problem-solving.

 

One of the points that in my opinion is one of the most important is that it allows you to create new friendships, with people with different interests and goals. Believe it or not, you can have many things in common with them, for example, some people emigrated from their countries of origin in search of professional growth. For this reason, I present to you the testimony of a good friend, with whom I shared work on a recent project:

 

Saurabh Sharma - Back End Developer

When I decided to move to Canada from India in search of better career opportunities, I knew that the change was not going to be subtle and easy, and I was expecting a long period of struggle as I had to adapt to a new culture, new people, and most importantly hostile weather.

 

In my workplace, there were people from different countries who spoke different languages and ate different food, but one thing that was common amongst all of them was mutual respect. Most of them had traveled the same journey to find a life in a new country, putting us all in the same boat.

 

Also, In my opinion, different cultures bring different perspectives, and different perspectives lead to different ideas. It works as a strong cohesive unit that is always ready to take on various challenges.

 

Overall, I am enjoying my current phase of life and each day brings interesting experiences. For example, I don't speak French and nobody in my current neighborhood speaks English. So instead of perceiving it as a disadvantage, I consider it as an opportunity to learn something new, a new language.

 

As I said, it all depends on your perception and for me, I like to perceive my life as a canvas and I want to be able to paint it with as many different colors as possible.

 

In companies that break borders, it is crucial to understand the perceptions of each of our colleagues; we all have different beliefs and customs, but above all, we must respect everyone's opinions and ideas.

 

In my current position at IPS, I have had the opportunity to collaborate on different projects with very diverse teams, so every piece of advice I have shared is based on my personal experience. Each person with whom I have worked has left me learning that has made me grow professionally and in my daily life, and above all has taught me to value the cultural richness that exists in the world.

 

To conclude, I believe that we should not see multicultural work as an obstacle, but rather as an opportunity for personal growth, assuming the challenges that life presents us and taking the best of each situation, but above all, being empathic with our colleagues since both for them as for us it can be a great change.

Mónica Saldaña

Passionate about Web Development and Project Management. She loves to travel with her family, stay on the beach watching the sunset is her happy place.


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