Frequently Asked Questions
1. What exactly is cross-cultural training and consulting?
Cross-cultural training ensures that employees understand each other better and work well together, leveraging their differing backgrounds and mindsets. The main purpose of cross-cultural work is to help you meet your business objectives and foster a truly collaborative organization. The individualized training involves much more than delivering a list of do’s and don’ts. First we examine your most common challenges across cultures, the ones that create barriers between you and your team or among team members. We tackle the issues that keep you up at night. For example, you might be concerned about deadlines not being met, unclear communication across borders, how to build a relationship with a virtual team, or how to offshore without the pain. Perhaps you seek to build cross-cultural competency or global awareness within your sales force. Once we identify your specific needs, we design an initiative to solve those challenges, from training to executive coaching to relocation preparation. We stay in touch to make sure that even one year later, you are meeting your goals.
If you are looking for a standard program on doing business in a particular country, we offer that, as well.
2. Why should my organization spend money on a “soft skill” like cross-cultural competency?
The answer is simple: Global diversity is here to stay and will have an impact on your business. What kind of impact do you want it to have? Here are some studies that provide the specifics:
- Study by Deloitte and Touche: “Major cultural differences” was listed as one of the top three challenges in working with Indian providers.
- Study by CIO Magazine: The failed communication and lags in productivity caused by cultural differences can account for up to 27% additional costs if not addressed.
- Study by CIO Magazine: In the beginning of a cross-border project, productivity can drop up to 20% because of unaddressed cultural differences.
- Relationship management was found to be one of the key success factors in cross-border projects, but a study by Let’s Bridge IT concluded that only about 20% of companies actively engage in that process.
- Accenture study: Adopting cross-cultural communication training programs can increase productivity by 26%, on average.
- Data collected in The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity survey has proved that “the better the diversity management in the four areas measured—human capital, CEO commitment, corporate communications and supplier diversity— the higher its rate of unbiased employee retention among all groups.”
- A study by Vantage Partners found that cultural differences can prevent both parties from achieving the full value of their deal: 64% of respondents say that the impact of cultural differences is greater than 10% of annual contract value, and 35% say the impact is more than 20%.
Successful decision makers also recognize the importance of maximizing potential of all of their employees. They take the time to learn what motivates people of varied cultures and how to develop their talents. Cross-cultural training reduces attrition and makes an organization sustainable.
3. How do you begin working with a client?
First, we ask questions to identify your goals. This process takes place through a free Global Readiness Assessment for qualified decision makers.
If we decide that we are a good match, we solidify the goals and outcomes you want to see, as well as how we will measure that success.
Highroad Global Services then designs strategies, trainings, plans, or whatever is needed to meet those goals. We build a relationship with you and partner to help you soar.
The design process is as simple or as complex as you need it to be. Contact us for an initial appointment.
4. Do you teach cultural etiquette and protocols?
Yes. Although we believe there is much more to culture than etiquette and protocols, we recognize the importance of demonstrating goodwill through this knowledge. We offer workshops that give you the whole picture of your destination country, including a brief history, country background, cultural values, communication styles, protocols, and customs. We give you the tools you need to succeed abroad, including telephone briefings for last-minute trips overseas, if necessary.
5. What kinds of results will I see with cross-cultural training and coaching?
We at Highroad Global Services believe in visible results. We want people not only to have a great training experience, but also to apply their newly acquired tools to their real business interactions. We surveyed many of our clients after our training and coaching sessions, and respondents reported the following:
- Improved communication flow
- Decreased errors
- Increased cooperation, trust, and teamwork
- Improved productivity
- Improved time management
- Decreased conflict
- Improved relationships
Call or e-mail us to see some of the surveys from our clients. Talk to us about how Highroad can help you achieve your global goals.
6. What sets Highroad Global Services apart from similar organizations?
Highroad Global Services team members like to work an inch wide and a mile deep with our clients. Rather than offer cultural trainings for any country in the world, we prefer to specialize in certain regions, namely parts of Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and the Americas. Our niche is easing the pain of offshore transitions to India and Latin America. We also serve expats moving in and out of the United States, offering them coaching, rather than training, and following up with them even years after their move. We stay invested in our clients and provide them with concrete, practical solutions to cultural challenges. Highroad is also proud of our team of expert speakers. We love to be a part of global meetings and inspire people to connect.
Do you have more questions? Call us at (1)770.936.9209 and ask for Vicki Flier Hudson. Do you want to learn more about our services? Click here.