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"She was very rude," Fendi Backpack Replica one of those in the direct role said when another participant would not even look her in the eyes. It was if the other person didnt care whether she was there or not.
Somalis from Fort Morgan acted as a panel to answer questions about their culture and how they ve been received by those who lived in the city before the East Africans came to town. Dan Barker/Fort Morgan Times
This shows how emotional peoples reactions can be to very simple body language and demeanors they do not expect, said Rachel Skanson, one of the leaders of the workshop and a consultant with the Spring Institute for Intercultural Learning.
W hen people with different expectations about body language and customs meet, they can both feel uncomfortable.
Those who were told to be outgoing and demonstrative strongly approached those who were told to hold back, speaking loudly and trying to look them straight in the eyes.
Skanson said she gives protocol lessons to people who are planning to visit other countries such as business people to help them avoid mistakes such as eating in a way that is offensive to another culture.
into consideration, Skanson said. Until people are truly communicating, they do not build trust or commitment.
However, there are also "unspoken rules" which can result in negative feelings about someone who violates them, Skanson said. Those can be things like personal courtesies, the use of time, and conduct in restaurants, social occasions or shopping.
That can come across as more brusque than intended.
Even when an immigrant can speak English, it can be difficult to understand his or her inflections or pronunciations.
She teaches them to learn to ask for items by saying "Could I have a pencil" or something similar, making it into a request instead of a demand.
between people and are taken very personally, she said.
Participants talked about some of the challenges they have encountered when trying to communicate with the many immigrants from Mexico, Central America and East Africa who have Fendi Peekaboo On Sale
Some students will say "Give me a pencil," or "I told you to give me a pencil," which is how people in their culture make requests.
Those who were the outgoing people had emotional reactions when the others would not look them in the eye, did not show emotion and responded softly.
Those who were asked to be passive reported being overwhelmed by the enthusiastic greetings and wanted to tell the outgoing people to "back off."
Cultures also have "unconscious rules," which are completely invisible but highly emotionally loaded, she said.
These participants came together to discover how to communicate better with the many new immigrants and refugees who have moved to Morgan County. They included representatives of Morgan Community College, local school districts, law enforcement agencies, the Fort Morgan Public Library, Centennial Mental Health, Centennial BOCES, the victims assistance program, migrant education, Head Start, teachers, churches and business people.
"They have something to hide," said another about the participants who kept their heads down the whole time.
For example, use of time is a big rule that can push peoples buttons, she said. If someone is late in America, people do not like it, but other cultures are not as schedule oriented.
Some cultures literally do not have words for ideas like "could" or "would," Skanson said.
In an exercise to illustrate this, participants in the Intercultural Communications Training at Elaines Place on Tuesday took on the roles of outgoing, direct people and passive, soft spoken people to experience that reality for themselves.
There are barriers to communication between immigrants and the community of those who lived in Morgan County before they arrived, said Brenda Zion, the other workshop leader and executive director of OneMorgan County.
Perhaps the largest was simply being able to understand the language the person was using. Some people could speak Spanish, but few could speak Somali or other East African languages.
These barriers can cause misunderstandings and tension between people, she said. When communication is not happening well, people assume that it is intentional instead of a cultural misunderstanding.
There are the visible differences between cultures such as food, music, language and architecture, in which there are few misunderstandings and less conflict because they are obvious, she said.
"Those are the things that can cause the most intense reactions," Skanson said.
The ways people communicate are influenced by the cultures in which they grow up, and those are more hidden than people realize, Skanson said.
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