I believe that communicating with different groups and cultures it influences individuals to be more aware of what they are saying verbally and non-verbally especially when early childhood professionals are trying to be culturally competent in their communication. Intercultural communication is an important exchange between cultures and it is one that can build bridges and relationships if done respectfully and competently. I do find myself using many techniques to communicate with people from different groups and cultures because I personally do not want to offend anyone or culture. However, it is important to note that the more communication individuals have with diverse populations the more you learn about them and from them. It increases our knowledge about cultures and helps to think more culturally competent (O’Hair, 2015).
One way that I communicate differently is practicing intercultural sensitivity (O’Hair, 2015). I try to make sure that I am practicing “mindfulness of behavior” that may offend other cultures (p.143). I don’t assume anything about any culture and I don’t make sweeping generalizations about a whole group or culture.
Based on what you have learned this week, share at least three strategies you could use to help you communicate more effectively with the people or groups you have identified.
Three strategies that I use to help me communicate more with people or different cultural groups are:
- I practice accommodation, so adjusting how I express myself and nonverbal behaviors (O’Hair, 2015).
- I also practice convergence which just means that I may adapt and change my communication so that it better aligns with another person’s.
- I am mindful of not coveying stereotypes and try to consider if a cultural group may have high-context culture or low-context culture so that I could better communicate with them.