Understanding and navigating culture (and worldview)
It tends to be that we have a very narrow view of our cultural environment and a potential loyalty of the people we meet.
In my world, the ability to navigate this is generally known as emotional intelligence.
I remember when Luis Suárez bit that guy in the world cup, the absolute outrage in the United Kingdom, which basically led to him being sold by Liverpool.
There clearly wasn’t much outrage in Barcelona where he went, and certainly nothing like it in South America.
Not that it was right or wrong, the cultural lens is different.
At the recent Osteology congress in Barcelona, the first speaker on the first day, posted a picture of; humans of difference shapes and sizes, as a metaphor for implants of different shapes and sizes. One of the pictures was an obese child with down syndrome sitting on a ball to represent a short implant, the other was a grossly tall thin female individual who was over 7ft high.
Present that in the United Kingdom (as a UK speaker) kiss goodbye to your career of speaking.
The individual that presented this was from Switzerland and he presented it in Spain and while myself and John (my Colleague that was with me) turn to each other in horror and nobody else batted an eyelid.
It depends of your cultural lens; it depends on the framework you’re working within.
Too often, I see the lack of emotional intelligence and the inability to navigate different human requirements and communication needs, has been a huge source of problem.
The funny thing is that emotional intelligence and adapt the abilities teachable and learnable with practice, whereas intelligence in its basic form, is not.
I’m not suggesting Luis Suárez was correct, nor am I suggesting that it’s right to post the pictures that I saw in Osteology, but sometimes it’s important to take a step out of our own world, of or own little smear of influence and realise that there is a bigger world out there, even just in the person down the street who wants to have a chat to you about the weather.
Blog post Number - 2006