Intercultural Differences: A Source of Potential


Even with an adventuresome spirit we can find ourselves at a loss when moving to an unknown environment. Welcome to culture shock! We are often unconscious of the role our own culture plays in our daily lives, as we are unprepared to incorporate a new culture into our way of getting things done. I propose to accompany you towards a rewarding encounter with this unknown entity to help you discover all the wealth of opportunity that lies within a multicultural experience.

Making International Mobility Easy

How do I get my new colleagues to respect me? How do I find the right tone to establish my authority? How can I communicate when I don’t speak the language well? How can I manage well in this different culture?

To succeed in your new position, coaching before your departure and during your early days will bring you:

  • The successful adaptation of your management style
  • An awareness of the culture specific essentials
  • The development of cognitive behaviours which facilitate integration
  • The strength which comes from your self confidence

Becoming aware of your own culture and its impact on your behaviour while positioning your objectives in your host culture will give you a clear vision of how to succeed in achieving the results you want. Knowing how to use your management skills to leverage cultural differences will allow you to increase your own added-value.

The Family Move: Creating the Adventure

How can I get my kids to accept this transfer? How can I help them leave their friends and find new ones? My spouse has to quit her/his job and leave our aging parents behind, how can I help her/him to cope?

An executive on the move is totally absorbed by the challenges of his new position and has little availability for his family. But it is proven that a multitude of failed international transfers are due to the family’s inability to adapt to their move. Working together with the whole family to prepare for the transfer can help to align expectations and create an adventure out of what might be otherwise considered as an imposition and source of resistance. Ongoing coaching during the arrival period can bring reassurance in dealing with unexpected issues to help each and every member rise to the challenge of integrating into their new environment. Coaching by phone maintains continuity despite the long distances.

And don’t forget the move back! Often ignored, the move back home can prove to be as challenging as the move out – a situation frequently ignored in corporate planning. You’ll have changed more than you might think, acquired new habits with a broader outlook on life. People back home feel the difference. Coaching during your return can facilitate a satisfying re-entry and orient your expectations to minimise the impact of reverse culture shock that many people experience upon returning home.

Short Term Intercultural Missions

We don’t have much time and the pressure is high – how can we move quickly in such a “slow” culture? They always say “yes” but nothing happens – what can I do? I’d like to feel like a member of my team but my new colleagues are so distant – how can I cross this divide?

You or your team are leaving for a short mission in a foreign country to set up an outsourcing station, do some research, or intervene in a specific limited context. Coaching can help you prepare to be effective the minute you land by increasing your awareness of culture specific meanings and behaviours which will impact your stay. You will arrive with the needed flexibility and self-assurance to meet the challenges while concentrating on your professional objectives. Coaching by phone during the mission creates a reassuring link to help you face unexpected situations and adjust your strategy accordingly.

Working with an Intercultural Team

Everyone here is talking and no one is listening - how can we move forward? They are incredibly slow and they don’t say anything – how can I get anything done? All I want to do is give them their instructions and know they’ll assume their responsibilities – it works at home, why not here?

Happy to find yourself in a multicultural team? Now how to go about getting the most of each culture’s strengths to insure that your team’s work is worth more than just the sum of each individual’s contributions?

  • Understanding the impact of your own culture
  • Creating an awareness of other cultures and their strengths
  • Understanding the intention behind the communication
  • Team building using each individual’s strengths and weaknesses

My Methodology

Cultural Awareness

Learning the keys to managing specific cultures


Defining the situation, the resources, and the challenges


Determining your objectives: both personal and professional


Accompanying the early stages of adaption