Intercultural Communication Competency: A Qualitative Analysis of Multinational Business Etiquette and Decorum
Melvin C. Washington, Ephraim A. Okoro

The twenty-first century business environment is expanding and constantly attracting the interest of countries from developed and developing nations of the world. As countries of the world become increasingly interdependent and interconnected because of global market and diverse consumer needs, it is critically important that participating countries and their organizations understand and appreciate one another’s cultural differences in order to ensure growth and sustainability in international or multinational business. Recent studies (Carte & Fox, 2008; Cardon & Scott, 2003) have traced the failure of some international business ventures to three significant factors: lack of intercultural skills and competence, inability to communicate effectively at a global level, and failure to practice acceptable etiquette in business negotiations. Therefore, businesses from different countries need to value the significance of understanding and adapting to the cultures and traditions of their counterparts as well as develop intercultural communication sensitivity and decorum. This paper then is an attempt toward analyzing the significance and role of intercultural communication and etiquette in international business. Recommendations for appropriate practices and acceptable conducts among nations are provided.

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