About 10 days ago I put out a query to some colleagues asking what they would like to know about regarding my experience training in the Middle East. I am trying to decide if I should write an article. Wow, did I receive (and am still receiving) a lot of feedback.
Consensus? Everyone wants to know about the differences between cultures and internal communication approaches. I find it really interesting that culture is so fascinating. I think it is a very good thing that we want to learn about cultural differences and influences because culture does affect how we communicate with employees.
When I interview some of the participants from the Dubai workshop, I’ll ask them how culture influences their channel choices, language decisions (such as direct or indirect), and the roles of senior leaders in communication.Â
Several colleagues specifically mentioned that their employers are opening offices in the Middle East. They wonder how they can best serve the needs of those new employees in the Middle East. They want to learn what to be aware of, what barriers they might encounter and how to enable those employees.
Some also asked about my own impressions, many of which I’ve already written about here. We want to know what others thought, felt, experienced, in places we’ve never been ourselves. “Can you characterize what surprised you about the experience?” one colleague asked.
While I’m not sure where the piece will be published, I hope to offer insight and perspective when it does get published. Not just my own, but also that of communicators living and working in the Middle East. Meantime, I welcome questions and suggestions on the topic.