Have you ever avoided giving feedback to a foreign national employee for fear of appearing prejudiced or insensitive? Managers are obliged to provide thoughtful, candid feedback as a core component of professional development. Yet managers, often representatives of the dominant or “majority culture,” may not always feel comfortable or confident in addressing foreign national employees with regard to cultural disconnects. They may not be fully aware of how misunderstandings related to social and behavioral differences can lead these employees to disengage. As Professor Erin Meyer put it: “Stereotyping people from different cultures on just one or two dimensions can lead to erroneous assumptions. Even experienced, cosmopolitan managers often have faulty expectations.”
Across L&D meeting agendas and HR discussion platforms, talent development is a perennially trending topic. Organizations have deepened their commitment to fostering cultures in which their people can develop and thrive. The L&D teams I’ve met with are eager to explore learning options both to accelerate the growth of their high-value employees and enhance their recruitment efforts, and they are pushing for budgets to do so.