Cross-Cultural Business Communication

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BA361: Cross-Cultural Business Communication
Fall 2012; CRN 11688 Lillis 255
Instructor: Kay Westerfield Office: 194 Esslinger Wing A (entrance next to MacCourt) Office hours: TUES 3:00-4:30, WED 12:00-1:30, and by appointment Email: kwesterf@uoregon.edu Office phone: 541-346-1094

_________________________________________________________________________________________ Course Materials (Note the 5th edition of textbook.) Intercultural Communication in the Global Workplace. 2010. 5th edition. Varner and Beamer. McGraw-Hill/Irwin. Course Packet See also materials at the Knight Library Reserve Desk, in my office, and Recommended Readings in packet. Course Blackboard Website: To access the website for this course, go to https://blackboard.uoregon.edu/ Course Overview All over the world organizations are finding themselves increasingly engaged in cross-cultural communication, whether they are doing business in another country, sourcing products from abroad, managing an increasingly multicultural workforce at home, or appealing to customers from a variety of cultural backgrounds. As a result, intercultural communication skills are not a distant need for the future, but a real need right now in the workplace. This course develops an awareness of cultural priorities and intercultural communication skills and applies them to practical business communication and professional contexts. All business is international. And how you communicate makes a world of difference. Course Objectives In this course, you will: • examine a range of theoretical approaches to understanding value dimensions across cultures • analyze the potential impact of cultural variables on business interactions • recognize potential barriers to communication and how to minimize them in spoken and written business discourse • conduct research using a variety of culture-specific and culture-general information resources on business communication • demonstrate self-awareness of the mix of cultures that combine to determine one’s own values, beliefs, and attitudes • recognize the common strands linking all cultures • acquire culturally transferable strategies to minimize misunderstandings stemming from cultural differences Coursework Many of the assignments in this course are of a collaborative nature. Writing in the workplace is a collaborative effort in which group members contribute constructively throughout all steps in the document process. Furthermore, given that a major focus of this course is on communication between cultures (of which national culture is only one), it makes sense that individuals have the opportunity to practice their communication skills through group work in the course. We will be working together to compile a cross-cultural training manual to assist you who are currently working/traveling internationally or who will be in the future. This training manual will provide a helpful guide to the impact of culture both inside and outside the workplace. It will be comprised primarily of our country-specific cultural profiles. #1. Cross-Cultural Research & Reflection Assignment (Individual): Assignment in packet and on Blackboard. The assignment builds your “Cultural Intelligence” and introduces you to resources that will be valuable for your CountrySpecific Cultural Profile.

#2. Country-Specific Cultural Profile (Team Project): Assignment in packet and on Blackboard. We will examine a theoretical model to use when asking questions about a culture's system of values, beliefs, and attitudes. These countryspecific cultural profiles will be included in our Cross-Cultural Training Manual. You will be able to purchase your own copy of this class project at a copy shop near campus. #3. Personal Cultural Profile (Individual): Assignment in packet and on Blackboard. Knowing your own personal value preferences is a key element of “Cultural Intelligence”. All course assignments must be word-processed. Late assignments will not be accepted without...
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