Differences between cultures in non verbal communication

In some places, non-verbal communication assumes more significance than verbal communication and in other places it is the vice versa. Let us begin our understanding of these two types of communication in the following manner. Man is a social animal and cannot live alone.

Differences between cultures in non verbal communication

Broadly speaking, there are two basic categories of non-verbal language: Basically, it is one of the key aspects of communication and especially important in a high-context culture.

It has multiple functions: Used to repeat the verbal message e. Often used to accent a verbal message.

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Often complement the verbal message but also may contradict. Regulate interactions non-verbal cues covey when the other person should speak or not speak. May substitute for the verbal message especially if it is blocked by noise, interruption, etc — i.

Note the implications of the proverb: Non-verbal communication is especially significant in intercultural situations. Probably non-verbal differences account for typical difficulties in communicating. Cultural Differences in Non-verbal Communication General Appearance and Dress All cultures are concerned for how they look and make judgements based on looks and dress.


Americans, for instance, appear almost obsessed with dress and personal attractiveness. Consider differing cultural standards on what is attractive in dress and on what constitutes modesty. Note ways dress is used as a sign of status? Body Movement We send information on attitude toward person facing or leaning towards anotheremotional statue tapping fingers, jiggling coinsand desire to control the environment moving towards or away from a person.

More thanpossible motions we can make — so impossible to categorize them all! But just need to be aware the body movement and position is a key ingredient in sending messages. Consider the following actions and note cultural differences: Bowing not done, criticized, or affected in US; shows rank in Japan Slouching rude in most Northern European areas Hands in pocket disrespectful in Turkey Sitting with legs crossed offensive in Ghana, Turkey Showing soles of feet.

Gestures Impossible to catalog them all. But need to recognize: In addition, amount of gesturing varies from culture to culture.

Some cultures are animated; other restrained.

The Difference Between Verbal & Nonverbal Communication | Our Everyday Life

Restrained cultures often feel animated cultures lack manners and overall restraint. Animated cultures often feel restrained cultures lack emotion or interest. Even simple things like using hands to point and count differ. US with index finger; Germany with little finger; Japanese with entire hand in fact most Asians consider pointing with index finger to be rude Counting: Facial Expressions While some say that facial expressions are identical, meaning attached to them differs.

Majority opinion is that these do have similar meanings world-wide with respect to smiling, crying, or showing anger, sorrow, or disgust. However, the intensity varies from culture to culture. Many Asian cultures suppress facial expression as much as possible. Too much smiling is viewed in as a sign of shallowness.

Women smile more than men. Western cultures — see direct eye to eye contact as positive advise children to look a person in the eyes. This is a possible cause for some sense of unease between races in US.The differences between high-context versus low-context communication can also be explained by cultural differences in thinking styles.

The long tradition of the study of rhetoric in the United States and many European cultures reflects the cultural pattern of logical, rational, and analytical thinking.

As you see, the differences in nonverbal communication between cultures are pretty striking.

Verbal Communication Styles and Culture - Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Communication

This means that when you need to communicate with people from different cultures, it makes sense to learn in advance about their nonverbal communication.

Jan 16,  · Video about the differences between non-verbal communication in different cultures. Top 8 Differences in Nonverbal Communication across Cultures.

Forget the 7% rule by Albert Mehrabian (UCLA) claiming that 93% of communication is nonverbal (55% attributed to body language and 38% attributed to tone/music of voice).

Project Communication Tips: Nonverbal Communication in Different Cultures written by: Ada Stoy • edited by: Linda Richter • updated: 6/29/ We might be living in a global world but nonverbal communication in different cultures shows such drastic differences that you might get the feeling that we are from different planets.

A communication style is the way people communicate with others, verbally and nonverbally.

Differences between cultures in non verbal communication

It combines both language and nonverbal cues and is the meta-message that dictates how listeners receive and interpret verbal messages. Of the theoretical perspectives proposed to understand cultural variations in communication styles, the most widely cited one is the differentiation between high-context.

Non-verbal Communication in Different Cultures - Businesstopia