Psychological and Communicative Distances

© Article translated from the book “Negoziazione interculturale, comunicazione oltre le barriere culturali” (Intercultural Negotiation: Communication Beyond Cultural Barriers) copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available for any Publisher wishing to consider it for publication in English and other languages except for Italian and Arab whose rights are already sold and published. If you are interested in publishing the book in English, or any other language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact the author from the webstite www.danieletrevisani.com 

Differences Between Sender and Recipient of Messages

The T2V method developed by the author addresses the problem of the “distances” that separate communicators – psychological and communicative distances, certainly not physical – and how these can or cannot be overcome. Feeling the “distance” between people is a common, daily fact. Feeling distant even when you are physically close, looking for a contact and not finding it, not understanding the approaching moves of others, the desires of a deeper relationship, or the signals that others send us.

It is a common aspect of life. We can, however, and this is the interesting game – try to reduce these distances, if and when we desire it inwardly – in the case of friendships and intimate relationships. In these cases, or when it is important in terms of business, it is possible to put in place devices that allow us to seek the approach, reduce the distance and remove misunderstanding. Among the main errors of communication is that of deluding oneself that people are all in all similar in terms of opinions, languages, attitudes, basic values, world views.

This presumption leads us to consider the transmission of an idea or concept that we consider obvious and simple, an almost “automatic” fact, while in reality this is not the case. A further illusion is that intercultural communication requires little effort or commitment. Some think of resolving relationships with wives, husbands, children, colleagues by talking on a cell phone for a few minutes. Even if it were hours, the communicative quality will still remain unsuitable for the problem. True intercultural negotiation requires time, commitment, dedication, interpersonal contacts and extensive “relationship work” that doesn’t end with an email or a phone call.

If we want to be effective on an intercultural level, we must use the right time and the right means of contact. Personal critical incidents analysis tutorial Critical incidents (critical cases, positive or negative) are extremely helpful in discovering some relationship mechanisms that do not work, or behaviors and attitudes that create difficulties in relationships and negotiations.

Analyzing some critical personal relationship incidents (critical, positive or negative events), in which we can assess that not enough time has been spent working on the relationship, clarifying differences, or the most effective means of contact have not been used from us or from others. Highlight:

  • times (when);
  • people involved (who);
  • reasons for the criticality (why);
  • possible alternative lines of action to be taken in similar cases.

Differences between sender and recipient of messages

One of the main areas of intercultural communication is the study of the differences between the sender and receiver of the message. How are “I” and “you” different? In relations between companies, where are the differences between “us” and “you”? In our method we will use two primary variables that constitute differences between communicators – two main cultural differences, (1) the communication code and (2) the world-view. The union of the two variables will allow us to develop a matrix of communication situations or states (COMSITS).

From the analysis of the matrix, we will propose some considerations on the limits of communication. In particular, the implications concern:

  • (1) the technical aspect of the communicative quality, that is, the exactness or accuracy of the exchange of information between people of different cultures (understanding), and
  • (2) the result of the communication in terms of agreement on the contents and visions expressed between the communicators. The two-dimensional model will be further developed in a forthcoming publication through the introduction of the four-variable model (T4V).
Intercultural Negotiation Arab Edition

© Article translated from the book “Negoziazione interculturale, comunicazione oltre le barriere culturali” (Intercultural Negotiation: Communication Beyond Cultural Barriers) copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available for any Publisher wishing to consider it for publication in English and other languages except for Italian and Arab whose rights are already sold and published. If you are interested in publishing the book in English, or any other language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact the author from the webstite www.danieletrevisani.com 

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