Use Your Difference to Make a DifferenceHow to Connect and Communicate in a Cross-Cultural World
<p><b>Become more culturally competent in an increasingly diverse world</b></p> <p>Recent years have seen dramatic changes to several institutions worldwide. Our increasingly interconnected, digitized, and globalized world presents immense opportunities and unique challenges. Modern businesses and schools interact with individuals and organizations from a diverse range of cultural and national backgrounds—increasing the likelihood for miscommunication, errors in strategy, and unintended consequences in the process. This has also spilled into our daily lives and the way we consume information today. Understanding how to navigate these and other pitfalls requires adaptability, nuanced cross-cultural communication, and effective conflict resolution. <i>Use Your Difference to Make a Difference </i>provides readers with a skills-based, actionable plan that transforms differences into agents of inclusiveness, connection, and mutual understanding.</p> <p>This innovative and timely guide illustrates how to leverage differences to move beyond unconscious biases, manage a culturally-diverse workplace, create an environment for more tolerant schooling environments, more trusted media, communicate across borders, find and retain diverse talent, and bridge the gap between working locally and expanding globally. Expert guidance on a comprehensive range of topics—teamwork, leadership styles, information sharing, delegation, supervision, giving and receiving feedback, coaching and motivation, recruiting, managing suppliers and customers, and more—helps you manage the essential aspects of international relationships and cultural awareness. This valuable resource contains the indispensable knowledge required to:</p> <ul> <li>Develop self-awareness needed to be a cross-cultural communicator</li> <li>Develop content, messaging techniques, marketing plans, and business strategies that translate across cultural borders</li> <li>Help your employees to better understand and collaborate with clients and colleagues from different backgrounds</li> <li>Help teachers build safe environments for students to be themselves</li> <li>Strengthen cross-cultural competencies in yourself, your team, and your entire organization</li> <li>Understand the cultural, economic, and political factors surrounding our world</li> </ul> <p><i>Use Your Difference to Make a Difference</i> is a must-have resource for any educator, parent, leader, manager, or team member of an organization that interacts with co-workers and customers from diverse cultural backgrounds. </p>
<p>Foreword xiii</p> <p>Acknowledgments xvii</p> <p>Introduction 1</p> <p>Why I Wrote This Book 4</p> <p>What is Connection? 7</p> <p>How to Use This Book 10</p> <p><b>Part I Educate</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 1 Education 13</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 2 Education of Self (Internal Culture) 15</b></p> <p>What Does Your Bias Say about You? 15</p> <p>Understanding Unconscious Bias 15</p> <p>Identifying Prejudices 20</p> <p>Knowing Your Emotional Triggers 21</p> <p>The Goal Here is to Learn, Unlearn, and Relearn 23</p> <p><b>Chapter 3 What are Your Core Values? 25</b></p> <p>Articulating Your Core Values 26</p> <p>How Our Biases and Values Help Us Connect 34</p> <p>The Role of Emotional Intelligence 35</p> <p><b>Chapter 4 Education of Environment 37</b></p> <p>Learn How to Collect and Gather Information 37</p> <p>Become an Active Listener 43</p> <p>Be an Active Member of Your Community 45</p> <p><b>Chapter 5 Thinking Like a Sociologist 47</b></p> <p>Develop a Habit of Understanding Why Things are the Way They are 47</p> <p>Study Melting Pots, Tossed Salads, and the Intersections in between Over Time 48</p> <p><b>Chapter 6 Applying LORA to Educate 49</b></p> <p>Listen 49</p> <p>Observe 49</p> <p>Reflect 50</p> <p>Act 51</p> <p><b>Part II Don’t Perpetuate</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 7 Don’t Perpetuate Systems 55</b></p> <p>Experiencing Stereotypes 56</p> <p>The Danger of Perpetuating Stereotypes 58</p> <p><b>Chapter 8 Identity 61</b></p> <p>Revealing My Identities 61</p> <p>Making Assumptions about Other People’s Identities 62</p> <p>Insiders versus Outsiders 64</p> <p><b>Chapter 9 Privilege 65</b></p> <p>Types of Privilege 65</p> <p>Equality and Equity 69</p> <p>Barriers to Connection 70</p> <p><b>Chapter 10 The Media 71</b></p> <p>Journalism 72</p> <p>Platforms Have to Acknowledge Their Power 76</p> <p>Entertainment (Movies, Music, Books, and TV) 79</p> <p><b>Chapter 11 Workplaces 83</b></p> <p>The Connection between Diversity and Inclusion 84</p> <p>Assess 86</p> <p>Arrange 87</p> <p>Apply 93</p> <p>Accountability and Analysis 95</p> <p>Affinity 96</p> <p>Diversity and Inclusion Starts at the Top 97</p> <p><b>Chapter 12 What about Recruiting and Talent Acquisition? 103</b></p> <p>Talent Search 104</p> <p>The Power of Employer Branding 110</p> <p><b>Chapter 13 Education 113</b></p> <p>History 113</p> <p>Social Justice 118</p> <p><b>Chapter 14 How Allies Can Use Their Privileges and Limit Othering 125</b></p> <p>Understand How History Plays into What is Going on Today 128</p> <p>Understand the Complexities of Your Identity 128</p> <p>Understand That Intersectionality Exists 130</p> <p>Do Something! 130</p> <p><b>Chapter 15 Applying LORA to Don’t Perpetuate 133</b></p> <p>Listen 133</p> <p>Observe 133</p> <p>Reflect 133</p> <p>Act 135</p> <p><b>Part III Instead, Communicate </b></p> <p><b>Chapter 16 Actually, Communicate 139</b></p> <p>Acknowledging Ideological Differences 140</p> <p>Silence is Not the Answer 140</p> <p>The Virus of Apathy 141</p> <p>Everyone’s Voice Matters 143</p> <p><b>Chapter 17 No More Binary Thinking 147</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 18 Finding Mutual Purpose and Shared Meaning 151</b></p> <p>Identify Your Feelings 151</p> <p>Create a Safe Environment 152</p> <p><b>Chapter 19 Receiving Feedback 163</b></p> <p>Ignore the Impulse to React and Embrace the Pause 163</p> <p>Understand the Intent-Impact Gap 164</p> <p>Acknowledge the Feedback 164</p> <p><b>Chapter 20 Practice the “Yes, And” 167</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 21 Communicating Like an Architect 171</b></p> <p>Architect as a Metaphor for Communication 172</p> <p>The Architecture of Communication Model for Speaking Out 174</p> <p><b>Chapter 22 What Nelson Mandela Taught Us about Seeing the Bigger Picture 177</b></p> <p>Mandela Found Freedom in Forgiveness 177</p> <p>Mandela Was Focused on Goals and a Mission beyond Himself 179</p> <p>Surround Yourself with People Drastically Different from You 180</p> <p>Mandela Knew How to Find Unity in Global Moments 180</p> <p>Educate Yourself 180</p> <p><b>Chapter 23 The Path to Reconciliation in Rwanda After Genocide 183</b></p> <p><b>Chapter 24 Healing Our World Today 187</b></p> <p>Avoiding Cancel Culture 187</p> <p>We All Need to Be Forgiven 189</p> <p>Open Dialogue and Open-Mindedness 190</p> <p><b>Chapter 25 The Importance of Cultural Awareness 191</b></p> <p>The Four Stages of Cultural Awareness 192</p> <p><b>Chapter 26 How Parents Can Help Their Children Be Culturally Aware 195</b></p> <p>Encourage Regular Interaction with Other Cultures 195</p> <p>Encourage Reading Diverse Books 196</p> <p>Encourage Respect and an Appreciation for Different-Sounding Names 196</p> <p>Use Food as a Way to Understand Other Cultures 197</p> <p>Encourage Critical Thinking as Opposed to Assumption 197</p> <p>Encourage Language Learning 197</p> <p><b>Chapter 27 How Schools and Teachers Can Help Children Be Culturally Aware 199</b></p> <p>Appreciate and Celebrate the Cultural Backgrounds of Your Students 199</p> <p>Be Your Students’ Leader and Not Their Dictator 200</p> <p>Create a Curriculum That Respects and Includes All the People it Serves 200</p> <p><b>Chapter 28 Applying LORA to Instead, Communicate 203</b></p> <p>Listen 203</p> <p>Observe 203</p> <p>Reflect 204</p> <p>Act 204</p> <p><b>Chapter 29 Use Your Difference to Make a Difference 205</b></p> <p>Valuing Collaboration 206</p> <p>Connecting via Technology 207</p> <p>Inclusion Beats Division <i>Every </i>Time! 207</p> <p>Glossary 211</p> <p>About the Author 215</p> <p>Index 217</p>
<p><b>TAYO ROCKSON</b> is the CEO of UYD Management—a strategic leadership and consulting firm that helps corporations improve their bottom line by incorporating diversity, inclusion and social justice strategies. He is an authority on cross-cultural competencies and international branding strategy. He hosts the popular cross- cultural podcast called <i>As Told By Nomads</i> and has been featured by media outlets around the world.
<p> The goal of <i>Use Your Difference to Make a Difference</i> is to strengthen self-awareness, acknowledge biases, connect with others in a meaningful way, and celebrate the differences around us all. Harmful behaviors, whether conscious or unconscious, can lead to social environments that perpetuate—and even intensify—hate and division. Only by acknowledging and understanding these behaviors can we learn to connect—with ourselves, with others, with our world. Connection is a process that turns differences into mutual understanding. Connection enables us to care for each other and be more empathetic. To be truly connected, we must educate ourselves, choose not to perpetuate systemic bias, and effectively communicate with people with vastly different values, backgrounds, and beliefs. This book is a roadmap for navigating the path towards moral courage, compassion, and accountability. <p>It is within our human nature to protect ourselves and others from harm. Unfortunately, throughout our past and into the present day, we have misidentified groups—whether comprising different religions, ethnicities, language, values, or cultures—as threats to our safety. Self-preservation is a powerful instinct to ignore when faced with perceived dangers. Only by learning about those not like us can we eliminate our biases, ignore misinformation, and reject false narratives of "otherness." Slavery, homophobia, bigotry, misogyny—these are not part of our genetic code; they are human creations. Educating ourselves on the lived experiences of others is crucial for leaving a better, more inclusive world to future generations. <p>We all have assumptions of the people around us, whether an immediate neighbor or someone halfway across the world. Culturally-intelligent communicators realize that not everyone views the world through the same cultural lens, they do not perpetuate biases and stereotypes. Using the methods contained within this book, you will learn to see things from new perspectives, engage those with different worldviews, and leverage your differences to make powerful connections. <p>We are living in an extremely diverse, inter- connected world. Technology allows people to interact and exchange ideas in ways that were not even imagined for almost all human history. The leaders of tomorrow need to understand how to connect with differences in a positive way. This book provides you with the knowledge and practical skills to transcend barriers, bridge cultures, and cultivate strong relationships with anyone, anywhere.
<p>Praise for</br> <b>USE YOUR DIFFERENCE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE</b> <p>"A truly inspiring read and a must for anyone thinking of creating an inclusive culture within their workplace through understanding the role they can play."<br/> <b>—Asif Sadiq, MBE</b>, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging thought leader and global expert <p>"Tayo has provided the world with a tool for readers who are interested in diving far beneath the superficial treatment that diversity materials often receive. Anyone intentional enough to read this book will increase their cultural fluency and have access to deeper levels of interpersonal discernment and communication."<br/> <b>—Dr. Tiffany Jana</b>, founder of TMI Portfolio and best-selling author of <i>The B Corp Handbook, Erasing Institutional Bias, and Overcoming Bias</i> <p>"Tayo Rockson meticulously unpacks the complex barriers to leveraging our 'difference to make a difference' and provides tangible solutions to counter those forces while we hold fast to our core values."<br/> <b>—Tsedal Neeley</b>, Harvard Business School professor and author of <i>The Language of Global Success</i> <p>"Tayo beautifully acknowledges our differences as super powers, and how our unique positionalities can be used as tools to bridge across divides. He interweaves his global upbringing in a proactive and interactive manner throughout the book; it feels as though you're having a one-on-one dialogue with him."<br/> <b>—Liz Kleinrock</b>, founder of Teach and Transform <p>"This is a great primer for us all to reflect on our part in the current divisiveness in our workplaces and world with fantastic ideas on ways to connect and create—together."<br/> <b>—Cy Wakeman</b>, <i>New York Times</i> best-selling author, drama researcher, and author of <i>No Ego</i>
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