With 220 million people living abroad, we can’t get around the fact that we’re living and working in a globalized world. Not only multinationals are sending their employees abroad on expat assignments; more and more organisations internationalise because they find the skills and competences they need in international employees. So you don’t have to go abroad to meet colleagues from different cultural backgrounds.
Developing intercultural competence
To be able to work effectively with people from other cultural background, intercultural competence (also called cultural intelligence) is important to have. This is something you can develop, for example by living in a different culture than your own or making intercultural friends. If you want to work on developing your intercultural competence, then there are also various exercises you can do. I am compiling a list of such exercises that are particularly relevant for making friends abroad in my forthcoming book Breaking out of the Expat bubble. Interested? Then send me an e-mail, and we can see how I can help!