Item description for Speaking of India: Bridging the Communication Gap When Working With Indians by Craig Storti...
Westerners and Indians are working more closely together and in greater numbers than ever before. The opportunities are vast, and so is the cultural divide. Misunderstanding, misinterpretation, missed deadlines and frustration due to cultural differences raise havoc on success. Any Westerner conducting business with Indians, and any Indian trying to figure out the West, will recognize the challenge.
Craig Storti has helped more than 20 global companies in just this situation. With more than a dozen years of experience working between two cultures, he has trained thousands of employees, interviewed hundreds of managers and has identified key cultural flashpoints. The result is a powerful series of Best Practices, the basis of Speaking of India. From the difference between the way Indians and Westerners use "yes" and "no" to the secrets of a successful conference call, to the changing status of women in the Indian workplace to the do's and don'ts of daily interaction, this essential guide helps us realize the ambitious dreams of working together... once we understand each other!
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Craig Storti has over 30-years of experience as a trainer and consultant working with business people, diplomats, civil servants, and foreign aid workers to help them work and engage effectively with people from other cultures and diverse backgrounds. He is an advisor to Fortune 500 companies on international joint ventures and expat/repat issues, he leads cross-cultural workshops for international agencies and organizations on four continents, and assists numerous corporations and government agencies to better manage global teams and culturally diverse workforces. A popular speaker, Craig is represented by The Washington Speakers' Bureau. He has written for a number of national magazines and major newspapers, including The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, and the Chicago Tribune. He has lived nearly a quarter of his life abroad-with extended stays in Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist cultures-he speaks French, Arabic, and Nepali. Craig is also Vice President of Intercultural Programs for the Toronto-based Human Resources firm proLearning innovations.
Craig Storti currently resides in Westminster, in the state of Maryland.
Reviews - What do customers think about Speaking of India: Bridging the Communication Gap When Working With Indians?
Good mostly, outrageous at times Sep 15, 2008
I am an Indian and I read this book with great interest. I was amazed how he captured some of the things which we Indians do (espl the way we conduct meetings) but never realize.
What I don't like is when he starts discussing the reasoning behind the behaviour. At one point, he says reasons why Indians don't speak up and reasons something like that they have been ruled for years so they developed that awe for westerners. That is so funny and so 'white's burden' tendency. I should have expected that from him.
The true reason behind the behaviour is not what he describes. The fact is that most of the western people face Indians when they outsource their IT work. In India, customer is god. Thats what Gandhi told us and thats what we are told from childhood. And in most interactions western people are customers, so Indians tend to respect them. Also, in India, respect for older people is a given thing. And most westerns are old as comparison to young IT people working on their projects. These are two prime reasons that Indian people don't openly oppose western people. It is so funny to see Mr. White connecting this behaviour to slavery and what not.
Let me clarify that I am Indian born person and I have lived and travelled to different countries and studied culture out of my passion. I wish Mr. Craig Storti 'White' understands the culture, verifies with the local people before he spits out something which westerners would like to hear. Can I ever tell you better than you can tell me why you behave like you do? The person in the situation is the best judge of the situation.
So readers, do read his book to understand different processes and behaviour and just ignore his reasoning behind those. It would take him ages to come up with an authentic reasoning.
Issues Waiting Westeners in India Sep 10, 2008
Craig Storti, like myself, attempts to help facilitate the business process between India and the West in his book, "Speaking of India: Bridging the Communication Gap When Working With Indians."
Storti has written a number of books about cross cultural communication and this will certainly be of benefit to business people travelling to India.
Storti very nicely identifies the issues that will arise when Westerners first try to do business in India. The book's real-life practical examples are helpful and realistic. The author's end-of-chapter summaries are especially helpful for anxious learners.
We share a willingness to express a sense of humor when detailing India's shortcomings as well as her greatness. I started and finished this book on a recent trip to Chennai, India and found it an easy and helpful read.
By Gunjan Bagla Author of Doing Business in 21st Century India
Highly recommended Jun 14, 2008
This book is essential for any American working with Indians. He gives clear descriptions of the differences in how the two cultures tend to function. I am an American living in India, and this book has made a huge difference in my ability to communicate well. Highly recommended.
Great addition for your rightshoring baggage May 31, 2008
In Speaking of India neemt Craig Storti je mee naar de valkuilen die Indiase en westerse collega's kunnen tegenkomen in hun contacten op de 'werkvloer'. Tussen quotes, want de werkvloer kan een verbinding tussen locaties verspreid over de wereld zijn, of een op één plek samengebracht team, waarin de beide culturen elkaar letterlijk ontmoeten. Storti waakt voor generalisaties, hoewel ze voor de beeldvorming natuurlijk wel handig zijn. Diverse herkenbare voorbeelddialogen laten zien hoe snel communiceren 'zo dicht mogelijk langs elkaar heen praten' wordt.
Aspecten als hiërarchie, Hofstra's onderzoeken naar collectivisme versus individualisme en machtsafstand, verschillen tussen mannen en vrouwen en het Engels worden beschreven. Elk hoofdstuk sluit af met best practices en tips voor zowel de Indiase als westerse optiek. Het boekje rondt na diverse communicatie issues in de taal (bevestigen, ontkennen, positieve en negatieve feedback, vragen stellen, het bespreken van deadlines) af met een overzicht van diverse gebruiken, waarin westerlingen en Indiërs verschillen, zoals eetgewoonten, cadeaus bij een visite, het dragen van schoenen, kledingkeuze, het schudden van handen om het omhelzen van mensen van hetzelfde of andere geslacht. Handig voor in je multi-culti, rightshoring bagage.
Finally Hearing India! May 2, 2008
As a project manager for a US-based software and web development company, I had some apprehension about working with a new off-shore programming team in India. As a second-generation American, paired with my experience teaching English and citizenship classes to refugees from around the world, I've come to know first-hand how challenging, and disastrous, culture misunderstandings can be. Now, with regular cross-cultural global communication also becoming a part of my career, I felt the pressure to make sure my misunderstanding did not interfere with business and project success.
Craig Storti comes to the rescue in a quick, yet comprehensive, read. I kept this book with in my laptop case to read a chapter whenever I had a free moment. I was able to absorb the content, even in short reading sessions. I found the introduction of the book helpful in expressing the crucial importance of cross-cultural communication in today's business world.
There are many features that set this book apart from others in its category. I really appreciated the scripted examples of conversations between an Indian and a Westerner that are included with the chapters. These examples really helped to make a connection in my mind between the lesson of the text and real world application. Storti points out the missteps in each of the example conversations, and how it could have been prevented. The extensive section of the book devoted singly to the "Indian Yes" and other agreements is especially invaluable and a must to any Western individual seeking to prevent the biggest road-block for Westerners in Indian communication. Non-verbal communication is also included, seasoned with rich content regarding cultural and familial backgrounds which create the foundation of differences in our communication styles, both of which give a comprehensive understanding. The end of chapter summaries give you the necessary points for your own comprehension check and review.
I recommend this book specifically for Canadians, Americans, British, and Western Europeans working with East Indians in the business world. Although the book is written in a business context, teachers, volunteers, and vacation travelers would also benefit from the communication elements of this book, for a richer experience in India.
I shared this book with some Indian colleagues here in the US, who are quite Western. They found the book quite humorous, but said the accuracy and truth of it all is right on. Speaking of India has expanded my cultural understanding, and the effectiveness of my communicational understanding, with both East Indians here as "Westernized" long-time Americans, and Indians completely outside of my Western-centric experience.