Meaningful communication implies that the sender and the receiver of a message must share a mutual opinion of the meaning of the message (Reynolds & Valentine, 2011). Thus, much is required to reach a mutual understanding in a communication process, especially when the sender and the receivers of the message come from different cultures. A culture can defined as something that unites people of with common interests. The idea of culture is closely related to concepts such as common sets of values, cognitive values as well as conception of the world. It is a complicated patchwork of behaviors and values acquired by a group of people through communication. In this regard, intercultural communication refers to the communication between people who belong to different cultures. People from different cultures have substantial differences that may lead to a significant difference in how messages are interpreted. Thus, a greater and in-depth understanding of different and diverse cultures leads to more positive interaction and effective communication. Various researchers have ascertained that professionals working in multicultural environments ought to have knowledge of different cultures so as to communicate with people from different backgrounds more effectively.
High and Low Context Communication
A renowned scholar, Edward T. Hall, formulated a useful concept that is important in understanding cultural differences in business communication (Reynolds & Valentine, 2011). He established a distinction of low-context and high-context cultures. Hall’s concept gives an extensive explanation of how negotiations are carried out, how agreements are specified as well as how workers are managed. It also gives an explicit distinction between relationship-based and rule-based cultures. In high-context communication, the message has to incorporate a great deal of background information for it to be understood. Conversely, low-context communication provides more of the information