Cultural Intelligence

Emotional intelligence doesn't translate

24 Sep 2018 | David Livermore

Emotions are universal. But the ways in which different cultures express them are not. So what’s considered appropriate in one culture could get you in trouble if blindly applied to colleagues and friends elsewhere.

Culture fit vs. authenticity

18 Jun 2018 | David Livermore

Authenticity - being yourself - can sometimes collide with organizational values. So how far should any of us be expected to give up our authentic preferences for the sake of an organizational purpose?

Seven ways to assess your perspective taking

12 Mar 2018 | David Livermore

You can’t motivate people or negotiate effectively without perspective taking - being able to step outside our own experience and consider something from another person’s point of view.

The biggest source of conflict on diverse teams

22 Nov 2017 | David Livermore

Clashing expectations are the main source of conflict in almost any relationship. And nowhere is that more true than on diverse teams, where intercultural challenges mean that the potential for misalignment is even greater.

Charlottesville, Google, and why some need CQ more than others

21 Aug 2017 | David Livermore

Cultural intelligence is about how the 7 billion human beings on this planet get along together. So whether it's at home or at work, we all need CQ. But some of us need it much more than others.

A white guy's humble advice to black professionals

16 May 2017 | David Livermore

Companies are chasing diverse candidates. But how can those candidates use cultural intelligence to help them find the kind of employer who will include their perspectives as a critical part of their strategy rather than using them to up their diversity counts?

Boredom, smartphones and cultural intelligence

13 Apr 2017 | David Livermore

Moments of boredom free up our mind to think creatively. But who has time to be bored these days? Most people seem to be glued to their smartphones whenever there’s a moment to spare.

Productive conversations to build cultural intelligence

21 Feb 2017 | David Livermore

How do we engage in productive dialogue with people who have very different perspectives from our own? The many conversations I’ve had since the U.S. election have given me some ideas.

Emotional differences across cultures

12 Dec 2016 | David Livermore

Different cultures appear to have very different ways of showing emotion and managing feelings. But in reality we all have much more in common than meets the eye when it comes to how we handle some key human emotions.

Weird, rude, or different?

07 Nov 2016 | David Livermore

Cross-cultural encounters can sometime be very awkward. Here are a few suggestions for a culturally intelligent way to respond to those difficult cross-cultural situations.

North America's accent problem

04 Oct 2016 | Wayne Turmel

As a Canadian who spends a lot of time on international conference calls and webinars, it's impossible not to notice that almost everyone can deal with foreign accents except (North) Americans.

How stress can lower your cultural intelligence

23 Aug 2016 | David Livermore

Working with people from a diverse range of backgrounds is rewarding, but it can also be tough going. And the more you’re under stress, the harder it becomes and the more a small behavioral difference can become a major irritation.

Adapt, but don’t overdo it

18 May 2016 | David Livermore

Fusion cooking is a great metaphor for bringing out the best from a multicultural team because it combines ingredients from different cultural traditions while preserving distinct cultural flavors and traditions.

Melting pot

03 May 2016 | Janet Howd

All over the globe, attitudes to human diversity divide societies. Why are so many of us dismissive of anyone who does not carry the same cultural baggage as we do?

When does cultural immersion go too far?

18 Apr 2016 | David Livermore

I’m a big advocate of getting to know a culture up close and moving beyond surface-level encounters. But I’m beginning to think that I ought to give up some of the cultural experiences I’d like to have because they may do more harm than good.

Cultural intelligence and the power of attention

10 Dec 2015 | David Livermore

Giving undue attention to negative feelings shrinks your world and your breadth of perspective. Focus on the positive and you’ll expand your view. This is the power of attention. And in culturally diverse teams, it’s absolutely critical.

Dealing with a different sense of urgency

12 Nov 2015 | David Livermore

One of the biggest frustrations when working across cultures is a different sense of urgency, follow-through, and deadlines. Whatever your relationship with time, here are some guidelines to address this challenge.

The dilemmas of a travelling white guy

20 Oct 2015 | David Livermore

When I’m travelling, I’m routinely given the best places to sit in restaurants, granted access to exclusive lounges I haven’t paid for and escorted round queues simply because I’m a well-dressed, white American male.

What diversity matters most?

23 Sep 2015 | David Livermore

Diversity of thought, work style, function and age are all important forms of difference. But not all diversity is equal. The two types of diversity that matter most are visible diversity and under-representation.

Racist comments, Facebook rants and cultural intelligence

14 Aug 2015 | David Livermore

What should you do when you run up against friends, family members, colleagues or clients who make little effort to engage with others with any degree of cultural intelligence?