Month: May 2019

messages: to shoot the messenger with

In no particular order: As diverse communities are more likely to measure their responses (both verbal and in body language) for the benefit of others, the politesse they’ve grown up with can feel diametrically opposed to western culture sometimes. Cultural norms of controlling one’s reactions enable people to suspend judgement, maintain social cohesion, tolerate inappropriacy, identify and address root causes rather than surface issues. Social cues can be more about what is not said than what is said. Length of silences suggest people are grappling with an issue as they spin in their minds what they should say. People in the west then fill the silence with chatter, inevitably missing the mark, which leads to a feeling of not being listened to. A controlled response may seem manipulative, but it’s not. It may seem like an acceptance of inappropriacy, but it’s not. It usually just indicates a continued indecision about you. This is a direct contradiction to the western demand for authenticity which, for many in diverse communities, creates internal conflict. The external experience of …

what will you do about your boy?

I grew up in media industries just as they began to globalize and pretty much swam with the global current… spending most of my career inhabiting imaginary spaces between regional-global directors and CEOs. Sometimes I’ve found myself caught between the regional powers that be, who have been tasked with driving growth that exceeds global or regional GDP growth rates, and their country CEO’s who are (sometimes) seen as bottlenecks to achieving this. Formulating strategic plans driven from the ground level (consumer insight), meant sometimes being faced with the animosity of a disgruntled CEO, who transforms into the bane of a regional director’s existence. I was just a messenger, but a well-protected one. In international streams, regional level accountabilities make disgruntled CEOs a necessary hurdle to overcome. From fields to factories to distribution channels and office staff — an established business losing pace in high growth markets mean eventual job losses across the board, in countries where there often aren’t safety nets for employees. These are seen as real consequences, even when emerging market declines are …