“Why are Australians so hard to understand?”

2018-08-09T06:26:10+00:00 By |

I’ll never forget the moment.  I was facilitating a Global Teams program in Shanghai for Country leaders of the IT department of a multinational client.  It was a well-earned coffee break and Eric, a participant from Hong Kong approached me with a question which has stayed with me ever since.

“Why is it?’ he asked gazing  around the room, “that he’s from Delhi, she’s from Tokyo, he’s from KL, he’s from Bangkok…we’re all speaking English as our second language, and we all understand each other perfectly well.” He then paused and subtly turned to direct his gaze at Ben from Melbourne.  “And yet, we can barely understand a word Ben is saying.”

I asked myself, “Why are Australians so hard to understand?!” Australians often don’t realise how confusing their communication style can be. Australians use the English language in a particular way, have a unique approach to hierarchy and use banter and teasing to build rapport. Colleagues and clients who aren’t Australian can find this style difficult to understand.

After years of research and working closely with Australian businesses to improve communication in their global teams, Beasley Intercultural is excited to release our Working with Australians eLearning Program. This Program is designed to demystify Australian cultural and business practices.

The Working with Australians eLearning:

  • Provides practical strategies to develop rapport with Australians
  • Enables participants to understand how Australians communicate at work
  • Outlines how respect and hierarchy are demonstrated in business

As you observe the Australia Day Public Holiday think about your newly arrived team members or colleagues working offshore. Could they use some help understanding Australians and the unique Australian communication style?

Click here for more information about Working with Australians eLearning.

Tamerlaine

About the Author:

Tamerlaine Beasley is an expert who enables effective collaboration and communication in diverse and global workplaces. She is a member of the Board of the Australia-ASEAN Council for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and founder and Managing Director of Beasley Intercultural, Australia’s premier cross-cultural training and consultancy company. Tamerlaine’s keynote presentations, advisory services and training programs are described by clients as ‘transformational’ and ‘game changing’. Examples of her work include: coaching and advising business leaders in Australia and Asia; working with global teams to optimise performance; developing a framework for training and capability building through international partnerships for APEC; building local staff capacity at the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific; leading the development of diversity and inclusion programs for the Australian Public Service Commission and the Department of Defence.