cultural intelligence


Cultural Intelligence – The Cure to Stereotyping

“I prefer hiring candidates from ethnicity A because those from ethnicity B are generally lazy and unproductive.” “Ladies do not make good bosses because they’re typically mean, controlling and moody all the time.” “Oh no, I’ve got a Millennial on my project team. These Millennials always feel they are so […]


When Is Conflict not a Conflict?

When you notice two people speaking very loudly and gesturing animatedly, would you assume they are arguing or just having a normal conversation? Or when someone comments negatively on the work you produce, does that affect you emotionally as a person? Do you welcome disagreements or challenges to your idea […]


Are You Known for Responding in a Timely Manner?

Ronald requires a third-party reviewer to provide feedback on his recent evaluation report for a construction project. He sent the documents via email to his peer, Thomas, two weeks ago but has not received a response. He decides to send a reminder email to Thomas. When Ronald returns to the […]


3 Keys to Developing Critical Thinking for Malaysians – From Local to Global

Let us imagine that you work as a senior finance personnel in the Kuala Lumpur branch of a multinational pharmaceutical organization. Recently, a decision was made to standardize your finance processes across all regions so as to create a One Finance Team rather than individual silos that operate with varying […]


The Valued Contributor vs The Silent Observer – Which Are You?

Have you ever had a 15-minute internal conversation with yourself to decide if you should share your idea or not, just to have your colleague voice out the exact same idea during a company meeting? And when that same idea was hailed as a fantastic solution to the problem at […]


3 Steps to Making Your Value Known When Working with Western Cultures

The Head of Project Management, an American named Michael, has called for a team meeting to discuss the details of an upcoming new project that is scheduled to begin in two weeks’ time. He has asked the team to be prepared to cover all aspects of the project – time, […]


5 Key Points to Consider When Making Conference Calls across Cultures

In the past, an international corporation’s Customer Inventory Planning was done separately by teams located in its respective regions. Recently, the company decided to merge its Asia Pacific and Japanese planning operations together. Senior advisers from both teams (a Malaysian named May and a Japanese named Kaori) arranged a conference call […]


Malaysian Communication-Stating an Opinion Outright vs Implying a Point

An international organization held a conference in Malaysia to standardize its manufacturing line processes across the different regions and participants came from all over the world. The organizers had offered to provide transportation for the delegates from their hotels to the conference site. As the Japanese participants had initially politely […]


Why Don’t Malaysians Like Asking for Help?

Katrina*, a Danish national, is here in Malaysia for a 2-year expat assignment to assist in standardizing the company’s policies and procedures on a global scale. After understanding how a particular process is done in Malaysia, Katrina explained how it is done on a Group level and provided suggestions on […]


Implicit Leadership Theory – What Makes a Good Leader, to You?

Have you ever briefly interacted with someone new and deduced that the individual must be in some form of a leadership role? Even though you hardly know that person, you connect some of the attributes displayed by that individual to what you view as good leadership qualities. Such a phenomenon […]