Over the last few weeks I have had the good fortune to run a series of workshops in Malaysia – an enjoyable and educational experience.
Enjoyable because the people I met and worked with were consistently charming, considerate and had a great sense of humour.
Educational in that I learned about the culture in Malaysia and, as always, in doing so, learned so much about our own. It is, of course, only when we step outside our culture that we can see the subtle and not-so-subtle nuances that are normally invisible to us.
But what has stuck with me most are not the differences but the similarities – those universal elements that are part of being human:
- The drive to achieve personal success, whatever success may look like to each of us as individuals
- The desire to contribute in a way that has meaning for us and adds value for others
- The need for recognition of our value as individuals
It seems to me that remembering these three fundamental elements in our communication with others can help us be more tolerant, more generous and more open towards them.
Everyone we meet...
- ...is driven to be a success
- ...wants to contribute in a way that has meaning for them and adds value
- ...needs us to recognise and value them as individuals
In the hurly-burly pressure of business life it can be so easy to communicate with others as if the opposite were true!