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Nov 23, 2009

Few Lessons un-learnt to learn a few more

How would it feel if you were dressed for some impending meetings and presentations for the  day and you were apprehensive about how presentable you look? 

A week ago I was in a similar situation and right at that moment a senior gentleman walked by and asked, "Which organization do you represent"? 

And when I answered "IBS-Bangalore", he said "Very Smart" looking at our outfits!!! 

That was all necessary for the confidence meter to shoot up and without a doubt, the rest of our day went very well. Subsequently, I was thinking about this incident and realized that everyday we see so many of our friends and feel "wow! do they look at their best or what"? 

But then, do we really take that second off to say "Mate you look good today"?  Personally speaking, I have come to know that there is never a wrong time to say it and not a whole bunch of us do so. 

What stops us from doing so? 

Is it the high context culture that we grow up on? By high context culture I mean to say, that we don't actually have to say things, to let people around us know that we mean it. 

In case of the Westerners it is the low context culture they have got accustomed that enables them to extravagantly display their emotions.

Take the new generation kids in urban India for instance. You would actually see them shouting out to their parents how much they love them and exchanging pleasantries. From my point of view I think this would have been something I would struggle to do easily. Not because I don't, but because nobody expects me to.

I was attending this lecture from my marketing professor who handles the subject of international marketing. It was attendance time by the end of the class and i was still struggling to come to grips with some of the concepts he taught that day and started discussing with friends while the attendance was on. All he did was to call out Sanjay and stare at me. Seeing me fall silent he said, now this is what is "High Context Culture" and I'd learnt my lessons for the day.

But thinking about the world we live in now, and as a truly global professional it pays to understand culture both from a high and low context perspective. Like my professor's say we have to unlearn a lot to learn newer things.

By the way I'm glad this post has taken away the burden of learning one chapter from my to-study list for the impending exams.

Till the next time.... Stay safe!!!


eyememyself said...

Hey very nice write up - am already unlearning eh ?? :)

I didn't know about these 2 types of cultures you mentioned. So it was definitely an eye-opener.

Thanks for sharing these Sanju. Do keep them coming :)

Sanju said...

@eyememyself, My pleasure. Will surely try to keep them comin.

Btw, been a month since you posted. Whats up?

The Muser said...

Nice post! It sure makes your day when someone compliments you. We dont do that in our culture more often i guess..

Btw loved the new look of your blog!

Prabhu said...

one chapter of IM learnt!!!!

Sanju said...

@The Muser, Thank you !!!

@Prabhu, Like it helped.. :(

eyememyself said...

Nope, I have posted this month. Guess it's not showing up on your page!

rohit said...

Hey Senior ,

Nice post.. as u said we need to unlearn things to learn somethng new.. is inspiring me now..

U are definitely one of d nicest person in IBS .

Rohit N

Sanju said...

Hey Rohit,

Am glad I could inspire you :)
And thanks a ton for the compliments.


Divya said...

hey really nice....and sooo true..

yamini said...

Hey!!! really nicely written...i actually am kind of perso who believe in sharing wid ppl what i like abt dm...coz, i believe complimenting others not only make d other party feel good abt dmselves but also make u feel nice...glad to no dt sum1 else also shares d same thoughts like me...

Sanju said...

@Divs, Thank you!!!

@Yamini, Thx for stopping by my blog. Glad to note we share this feature in common :) U got a nice blog thr... keep posting :)