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Our Family Is Crazy
DEI: A Focus on Cultural

Intelligence
By: Erin Finke & Byrony Treser
Date: July 23, 2020

DEI: The heart of our SIO; A focus on cultural intelligence 

“We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value no matter their color; equal in importance no matter their texture.”  —Maya Angelou

Knowing and celebrating the richness and fullness of such a tapestry only comes when we step beyond our comfort zones. Places of discomfort are our growing edges and when we enter them with cultural intelligence and cultural humility, they become the places where we can learn, grow, and change the most. A leader who approaches cross-cultural and interpersonal interactions with high levels of cultural intelligence creates an environment where beautiful things happen.

Inclusive leaders are effective in cross-cultural interactions and celebrate the fact that everyone sees the world through a different lens. They understand cultural differences and similarities and how cultural stereotypes can influence their expectations of others. They also recognize how their own culture impacts their perspectives and world view. This awareness and recognition leads to behavioral changes as well as being more specific and deliberate in word choice, gesture, tone, facial expressions, body language, and physical interactions in positive ways. As healthcare providers, we know the value of being able to change our tone, words, and behaviors to better meet the needs of our patients. Leaders who are culturally intelligent demonstrate this same engagement of the head, heart, and body.

Cultural intelligence is the intersection of a leader’s energy and interest to learn about and engage in cross-cultural interactions, knowledge of relevant cultural norms and practices, conscious cultural awareness during interactions, and appropriate use of verbal and non-verbal actions in cross-cultural interactions. The drive to learn about, and from others, leads to inclusive leaders who value differences and strive to build strong connections with people with different backgrounds. Inclusive leaders are adaptable and flexible in ambiguous situations, which enables them to manage the stress imposed by new or different environments.

Hallmark behaviors of leaders who are culturally intelligent include:

  • Taking an active interest in learning about other cultures and people
  • Seeking out opportunities to experience culturally diverse environments
  • Having confidence in leading cross-cultural teams
  • Gathering information on the differences and similarities between cultures
  • Working well with individuals with different backgrounds across all levels
  • Changing their style appropriately when a cross-cultural encounter requires it
  • Using appropriate verbal and nonverbal behavior in cross cultural encounters

Our journey towards becoming more culturally intelligent and acting with greater cultural humility is continuous. We will often find ourselves in those places of discomfort that challenge us or even make us nervous and unsure. Rather than backing away, embrace these opportunities to deepen the vibrancy of our collective tapestry.


DEI: A Focus on Cultural Intelligence

By: Erin Finke & Byrony Treser
Date: July 23, 2020


DEI: The heart of our SIO; A focus on cultural intelligence 

“We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value no matter their color; equal in importance no matter their texture.”  —Maya Angelou

Knowing and celebrating the richness and fullness of such a tapestry only comes when we step beyond our comfort zones. Places of discomfort are our growing edges and when we enter them with cultural intelligence and cultural humility, they become the places where we can learn, grow, and change the most. A leader who approaches cross-cultural and interpersonal interactions with high levels of cultural intelligence creates an environment where beautiful things happen.

Inclusive leaders are effective in cross-cultural interactions and celebrate the fact that everyone sees the world through a different lens. They understand cultural differences and similarities and how cultural stereotypes can influence their expectations of others. They also recognize how their own culture impacts their perspectives and world view. This awareness and recognition leads to behavioral changes as well as being more specific and deliberate in word choice, gesture, tone, facial expressions, body language, and physical interactions in positive ways. As healthcare providers, we know the value of being able to change our tone, words, and behaviors to better meet the needs of our patients. Leaders who are culturally intelligent demonstrate this same engagement of the head, heart, and body.

Cultural intelligence is the intersection of a leader’s energy and interest to learn about and engage in cross-cultural interactions, knowledge of relevant cultural norms and practices, conscious cultural awareness during interactions, and appropriate use of verbal and non-verbal actions in cross-cultural interactions. The drive to learn about, and from others, leads to inclusive leaders who value differences and strive to build strong connections with people with different backgrounds. Inclusive leaders are adaptable and flexible in ambiguous situations, which enables them to manage the stress imposed by new or different environments.

Hallmark behaviors of leaders who are culturally intelligent include:

  • Taking an active interest in learning about other cultures and people
  • Seeking out opportunities to experience culturally diverse environments
  • Having confidence in leading cross-cultural teams
  • Gathering information on the differences and similarities between cultures
  • Working well with individuals with different backgrounds across all levels
  • Changing their style appropriately when a cross-cultural encounter requires it
  • Using appropriate verbal and nonverbal behavior in cross cultural encounters

Our journey towards becoming more culturally intelligent and acting with greater cultural humility is continuous. We will often find ourselves in those places of discomfort that challenge us or even make us nervous and unsure. Rather than backing away, embrace these opportunities to deepen the vibrancy of our collective tapestry.

© 2019 Avamere Family of Companies
© 2019 Avamere Family of Companies
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© 2019 Avamere Family of Companies