Cross-Cultural Communication and Negotiation

A virtual talk by Catz Alum, Michael Gates (1979, English)

Friday, 17 May, 12:00 GBT on Zoom

Michael Gates (1979, English) was a Scholar at St. Catz. He went on to work in radio in Manchester from 1982-1987 with broadcasters such as Chris Evans, Mark Radcliffe and Timmy Mallett.

He then moved to Finland to manage and establish a chain of language schools in Finland and Sweden. In 1990 he started in the field of cross-cultural management and has since worked globally in around 50 countries training some of the world’s largest companies as well as governments and NGOs.

He is an Associate Fellow of the Saïd Business School – teaching cross-cultural negotiation – and Adjunct Professor at Zhejiang University, China, as well as running his own cross-cultural consultancy. He also teaches on Chevening Fellowship programmes at St. Cross College and the Department of Politics and International Relations.

He helped in the creation of the Lewis Model of Culture and came up with the world’s first major online cultural assessment and resource which won an award from the US Department of Education, in addition to scripting a number of award-winning cross-cultural online programmes, such as with Video Arts (founded by John Cleese and Sir Anthony Jay).

Session Description – Cross-Cultural Communication and Negotiation

Good cross-cultural communication and negotiation are essential skills for international organisations, whether in the public or private sectors, and indeed within and between universities.
These days we hear a lot about Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, but my field is more about developing the capability to bridge cultures for practical improvements in results – whether internally in teams, or in external relations.

In my session I will be introducing a simple and communication-based model of culture which can help us navigate complexity and give us a starting-point for bridging gaps. At the same time acknowledging that all models are ladders to kick away once we encounter individuals with their multiple cultural layers and personalities. As Kurt Lewin – the German-American psychologist – said ‘there’s nothing so practical as a good theory’.

I will also look at how game theory experiments have indicated that the three cultural types that constitute the model negotiate in significantly predictable ways with regards to price and time. Knowing this enables us to modify our approaches for better results in the long-term.

Please register below to get the Zoom link! We hope to see you there.


17 May, 2024