I would like to delve further into the four components of Cultural Intelligence (CQ) over the next few blog posts. This post will focus on Drive.
Drive is one of the key components to CQ. It is your interest, motivation and confidence to adapt to a multicultural situation. It consists of intrinsic and extrinsic interests and the drive to learn and understand different cultures, their norms and behaviours.
The intrinsic and extrinsic motivators are culturally determined. Extrinsic rewards are usually financial, such as salaries, bonuses and benefits. Intrinsic rewards are psychological rewards that individuals reap from engaging in meaningful work with a healthy balance of choice, competency, challenge and success.
As an individual you need to establish and maintain your own CQ drive and as a leader you also need to instill and support the motivation of your employees. Remember that your intrinsic and extrinsic motivators may be vastly different to those of your peers and employees so it is important to have a range of strategies in place.
Strategies for Improving CQ Drive for self:
Take some unconscious bias tests, seek feedback
Be prepared to make mistakes, learn from them and then move on
Identify your passions, what they are and why do you care about them?
Reflect on what guides and influences your behaviours and attitudes toward culturally diverse groups
Welcome opportunities to mentor others as a ‘cultural broker.’
Strategies for Improving CQ Drive for others:
Understand your own motivations, it will assist you when you are influencing and motivating others
Provide an exciting and clear vision of what can be accomplished i.e. share success stories and celebrate milestones
Ensure that the relevance between task and purpose is transparent. Help people to make clear connections between the vision and the work
Reinforce confidence in the self-management of individuals. Intrinsic motivation improves when people feel trusted and their expertise and skills are recognised and appreciated
Share customer feedback and interactions with individuals and the wider team. Not only does this promote purpose and goals, it also reinforces the successes and highlights areas for improvement.
Take a moment to consider what you find most challenging when you are in culturally diverse settings
Consider some of your CQ drivers and those that you have observed in others
How do you think improving your CQ drive could assist both yours and your teams overall level of CQ?
You may like to listen to my ‘CQ Drive’ Podcast in ‘CQ for Global Leaders‘ by clicking here.
Procurious, is a unique online business networking site specifically designed for procurement and supply chain professionals.
Dr Verghese was interviewed in ‘Smashing through the bamboo ceiling’ to discuss the processes and barriers that serve to exclude Asians or people of Asian descent from executive positions in Western-run organisations.
A provocative article that features some pragmatic strategies toward shattering the bamboo ceiling.
We all know people who are what I term ‘cultural chameleons’, they adjust to pretty much any new cultural environment quickly and with ease. Whether they’re traveling in a work or leisure capacity, or even if they’re in their home environment mixing with people from diverse cultural backgrounds, they know how to communicate at a level that is appropriate to their cultural situation. They possess a genuine interest in learning the cultural nuances and protocols and it all seems to be achieved with a degree of effortlessness.
Where does the CQ drive come from?
Why do some of have it and others find it arduous?
I recently did some work with the CEO of a global corporation. His organisation runs operations in 14 countries located in Europe, the Middle East and parts of Asia. One of his challenges was distinguishing between what are the necessary and unnecessary cultural skills that he needs to apply in order to successfully do his job. The intensity and demands of someone in his position meant that he needed to achieve this balance almost intuitively.
He shared with me the crucial moment when he realised that he needed to improve his cultural intelligence. He was at a train station in Bangkok during what was his first visit to Thailand. As he was rushing to catch a train at peak hour he was shocked and confused to see all movement at the station cease the moment music began to play over the loud speaker. Although he had no comprehension of why this was happening, his reaction was to also stop as he observed his fellow commuters stopping in their tracks. Once the music was finished activity at the station instantly resumed to its previous chaotic level. After observing this situation it instantly became apparent how little he understood the Thai people and their culture, and this event triggered a desire in him to increase his knowledge. He realised that if he wanted to get things done in this country he needed to understand the Thai psyche. He correctly surmised the music was the national anthem but at that point he had no idea of the level of respect that the typical Thai has for his country and king.
Cultural intelligence can be learned. For some people it will be moments like these that trigger the drive to improve cultural knowledge and understanding. A key driver can be purely appreciating that if we want to get things done in the most effective and efficient manner an appropriate level of cultural intelligence is essential. For people who are time poor one of the fastest ways of achieving this is via Cultural Coaching and Mentoring.