Cultural Sensitivities

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Category: Business and Industry

Date Submitted: 01/13/2012 07:40 PM

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In the recent years, hospitality has become more and more of a global business. Such growth requires hospitality industry to conduct their business with customers of different cultures. Working with people from our own culture sometime becomes a challenge let alone working and dealing with people from different cultures.

Any international service trade whether hotels or other services usually will involve service encounters and dealings with consumers from different cultures. Ignorance of core cultural sensitive values often leads to erroneous belief resulting in unhappy customers and lost business. It becomes painful when it doesn’t need to be. The fact that intercultural sensitivity which is an attitude that enables an individual to interact effectively with people from different cultures is a skill that can be measured and learned.

Research indicates that cross culturally sensitive employees are able to provide foreign customers better customer service. Employees are able to adjust their serving styles to meet the needs of the foreign guests. Such an act is extremely beneficial for any hotel as such employees are able to generate more revenue for the hotel through their impression on hotel guests and suggestive selling.

Business success in the 21st century will be dependent on how individuals and organizations acquire and practice cross-cultural sensitivity and skills when dealing with customers from diverse background. The growing international trade and dependence on service sector are contributing factors for practitioners in hospitality to acquire proficiency in coping with diversity. Research indicates cultural training is essential to appreciate cultural sensitivity.

As the market place becomes increasingly multicultural, hospitality industry is expected to experience an increase in cross- cultural experiences. A cross-cultural service may be impacted by the lack of support system and networks which mediate service environments with the own culture...