22. Defining, Developing, and Defusing Difficult Dialogues

Session II B: July 16-18, 2018

Fear is the language of our times. Our communities, both domestic and global, are experiencing a wide range of volatile issues related to race, religion, and gender that people need to discuss and understand. Differences in experience can make these discussions difficult, no matter how well-intended we are. Unacknowledged bias, preconceived notions, and deep emotions can block communication. Using three core conceptual models (Contact Theory, Emotional Intelligence, and Stereotype Threat), this interactive workshop will offer useful tools and guide you through self-awareness exercises and challenging dialogues about real-life cross-cultural issues. Finally, you will identify applications for your personal and professional life. Our work is designed for anyone wishing to increase intercultural competence and comfort with difficult dialogues, whether in training, education, coaching, or management.

Designed for

Diversity consultants, trainers, administrators, and leaders seeking to create inclusive climates; coaches and managers developing others; teachers helping students increase effectiveness in diverse environments; or anyone wishing to increase their own cultural competence and comfort with difficult dialogues.

Workshop Objectives

You will have the opportunity to:

  • Build on your own experiences in the area of Contact Theory and Stereotype Threat with populations different from yourself
  • Develop the empathy required for Emotional Intelligence in dealing with differences
  • Learn to use knowledge about Contact Theory, Emotional Intelligence, and Stereotype Threat to become more effective with a target population (e.g., clients, employees, students, family members) and identify actions that allow greater contact/information about the population identified
  • Identify appropriate dialogues about real-life situations related to Contact Theory, Emotional Intelligence, and Stereotype Threat
  • Use tools and processes to develop greater intercultural effectiveness in yourself and others

Learning Activities

  • Introspection and awareness building through personal assessments and analyses
  • Practice engaging in dialogues about real-time issues
  • Application of models and theories to real-world situations
  • Using exercise and tools to reduce bias and develop cross-cultural competence
  • Creation of personal and professional development plans
Anita Rowe effective intercultural communication

Dr. Anita Rowe is a partner in Gardenswartz & Rowe, where for over 30 years she has helped a variety of regional and national clients manage change, handle stress, build productive and cohesive work teams, and create intercultural understanding and harmony in the workplace. She has helped clients such as Cox Communications, Starbucks, Shell, Boeing, and the IRS manage diversity and create cultures of inclusion. Anita and her partner, Lee Gardenswartz, have co-authored a series of articles and books on diversity themes, including Managing Diversity: A Complete Desk Reference and Planning Guide; The Managing Diversity Survival Guide; The Diversity Tool Kit; and Diverse Teams at Work. She is also a co-author of The Global Diversity Desk Reference: Managing an International Workforce.

Donna Stringer cross cultural communication strategies

Dr. Donna M. Stringer is a cross-cultural consultant. She was founder and president for 27 years of a successful organization development company specializing in cross-cultural issues, located in Seattle. A social psychologist with over 40 years’ experience as a manager, teacher, researcher, and writer, Donna specializes in cross-cultural instructional design, cross-cultural communication and value systems, team building, and culture change strategies for organizations in the U.S., Asia, Latin America, and Europe. She has co-authored three books: 52 Activities for Exploring Values Differences, 52 Activities for Improving Cross-Cultural Communication, and 52 Activities for Successful International Relocation. She has written articles on preparing the next generation of diversity trainers for the 2007 Pfeiffer Annual Training Series and on preparing global leaders for the 2012 Pfeiffer Annual Training Series. Her most recent publications include a chapter on Diversity and Inclusion for the Multicultural America Encyclopedia and chapters on Generational Diversity and Global Diversity Management for the Encyclopedia of Intercultural Competence. Donna currently lives and works as a solo practitioner in Seattle.