Monday, January 30, 2012
Ask, Seek, Knock
I’ve written before about the importance of networking and moving from wallflower to evangelist. Closed mouths don’t get fed. If you want something, you have to either ask for it or walk up and take it.“Ask, and you will receive; seek, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks will receive, and anyone who seeks will find, and the door will be opened to those who knock.” Matthew 7:7.
Just as Jesus taught his disciples to persist in prayer as a way to improve their communication skills, global leaders must also be in constant pursuit of, and proficient in, cross-cultural communication skills if they are to succeed in today’s global environment. Global leaders must be persistent in asking for ways to gain more cultural knowledge, seeking ways to understand rather than to be understood by people of different cultures, and knocking on the door of wisdom toward unlocking hidden meaning to better communicate across cultures. Without the proper meaning, misunderstandings and misinterpretations often prevail because what is appropriate behavior for one culture can be inappropriate in another.
Global leaders often use their own meaning to make sense of someone else’s reality or lack cultural awareness of their own behavioral rules and apply them to others. Global leaders must strongly consider the cultural factors of the languages of context, time and space because they impact the language we speak, be it verbal or nonverbal.
Always remember, closed mouths don't get fed!