TN86: How to avoid intercultural misunderstandings – Sundae Schneider-Bean

If you’re growing a portable business and practicing it around the world, you will no doubt come across intercultural misunderstandings and situations where the local culture has an impact on you and your business.

“Cultural communication is about how to align expectations”

Sundae Schneider-Bean an intercultural specialist and a solution-oriented coach, and host of the podcast show Expat Happy hour.  Sundae is a mother two third-culture kids and has lived overseas since 1998.  She comes from the US and has lived in Switzerland, Burkina Faso and today lives in South Africa.  She has helped individuals from over 60 countries go through transitions and change.  Sundae also works with multinational companies and NGOs to support their employees as well as train multi-cultural and international groups around the world.  Sundae really understands the challenges of achieving your business goals when working across cultures.

“Ask yourself if the context is focused on the task or on building relationships”

Highlights from this episode

  • The biggest mistakes people make when dealing with different cultures
  • The definition of culture and how to be culturally aware
  • The difference between direct and indirect communication
  • What to do when you can’t read or understand other cultures or communication modes
  • How to build intercultural competence and measure it
  • How to deal with conflict
  • The 12 dimensions of culture
  • How to use Personal Leadership (PL) to deal with cultural misunderstandings
  • What kind of emotions to watch when dealing with an intercultural environment or conflict
  • What to do to get your needs met

 “Don’t underestimate what you can learn when you reflect on the role of culture”

The 12 key dimensions of culture



Sundae’s Resources

  • Argonaut Online –  online solutions for the development of intercultural competence

Find Sundae Online

Sundae has been on the podcast before so if you want to hear more from her, check out Episode 68: 3 Steps to Career and Life Reeinventions and episode 28: Dealing with high security risks and uncertainty.


Have you experiences a cultural misunderstanding before? Share with us what happened and what you learned from it.



Leave a Comment