AAC Global Blog

Free content to inspire and educate you from our language and learning experts

Success in India Requires More Than Risk and Profitability Analyses

Posted by Rana Sinha on 14/03/17 11:07

Many people approaching India from a strict production economy viewpoint and aiming only to maximize the return on their investment and the predictability of their operations will soon encounter their share of challenges. They often have their roots in cultural miscommunication: scheduling conflicts for projects, communication challenges, even personnel issues.

However, many companies manage to succeed in India, bringing in great results from their offshoring, outsourcing and co-operation projects. And no wonder! With a consistent growth rate of 7%, having overtaken the UK’s economy and with several unique achievements like reaching Mars at their first go, India keeps on dazzling with success stories. So, what can we learn from these?

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Topics: Cultural differences, Cultural training, Cross-cultural training, Indian Culture

Doing Business in Russia 101

Posted by Polina Koski on 21/02/17 09:38

Somebody once said that you can buy in any language, but you can sell only in the language of the buyer.

So, what do you do when you are entering a new market, such as Russia, and you don’t have the time, or the means, to learn the buyer’s language? It’s certainly not enough to prepare a flashy slide deck in the hopes of doing business in Russia; you need to take carefully planned, concrete steps to prepare yourself.

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Topics: Cultural differences, Cultural training, Doing business in Russia, Russian business etiquette, Russian customs and traditions

Mind your Ps and Qs

Posted by Glennon Kiernan-Lahti on 30/12/16 09:20

My New Year’s resolutions take the usual form of promising to go to the gym, or to watch what I eat, or to be ridiculously positive in my outlook on life. But, for this new year I’m planning on another form of mindfulness -  minding my Ps and Qs.

Mind your Ps and Qs is an old expression in English that means to mind your manners, or to be on your best behaviour in the company of other people. And it’s usually thought of as a reminder to be careful with the way you speak.


So, if for example your auntie was heading off to Buckingham Palace to meet the Queen (the lady, not the rock band), someone might call out, “Mind your Ps and Qs, dear”, as she was being waved out the door. The good advice being don’t drop your aitches, don’t slur your words, say “Really?”, not “What?”; in other words, talk posh.

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Topics: Cultural differences, Communication, Working life, Politeness

Santa Drives a Toyota Corolla

Posted by Glennon Kiernan-Lahti on 14/12/15 09:00

It was in 2004 that I realized I had been getting mixed messages about Christmas. Standing at a snow-covered bus stop in Tapiola I saw an old grey Toyota Corolla pull up at the lights across the road. Because there was very little else happening at 4 pm on a Christmas Eve, I glanced over to see who was driving. It was Santa! I couldn’t believe my eyes. But where was Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer?

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Topics: Cultural differences, Christmas, Language training

Language training is not what is used to be

Posted by David Brown on 08/01/15 12:02

One of the things I love about language training is the variety: No two clients are ever the same; no two lessons are ever the same.

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Topics: Cultural differences, Communication, Language skills, Language training, Working life

Get your message through using the cooperative principle

Posted by Michael Dowds on 20/11/14 16:43

Why do native English speakers hate group emails so much? What about info share sessions? Well, it’s because — although most natives don’t realize it — they’re probably following something called the Cooperative Principle, identified in the 1970s by the linguist Paul Grice. Not following the principle is a sure-fire way to make your receiver (listener or reader) frustrated.

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Topics: Cultural differences, Communication, Language training

Mixing social lingo and Finnish

Posted by Karoliina Rinne on 13/11/14 14:42

Over the past few years, the favorite blog subject of all language professionals has been the social media and its impact on the Finnish language. I can't help touching upon this subject either, and adding my piece to the debate.

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Topics: Localization, Cultural differences, Communication, Social Media

Small talk? The smaller, the better.

Posted by Antti Seppänen on 06/11/14 22:06

Finns don't do small talk.” This is what everyone has always been saying and wondering over the years. Of course, this is largely untrue. We can also talk about the weather, ask how the other party's trip went, or pretend to be fascinated about their new shoes.

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Topics: Cultural differences, Communication

Communication around the ball

Posted by Heikki Siltala on 16/10/14 11:57

Soccer as such – an sich, as the Germans say – might be boring for those who are not at all interested in the sport. However, when watching the soccer World Cup, one could see that a whole lot of aspects were included in this rather simple team sport. Even passive viewers of the World Cup received proper initiation to the diverse phenomena of the sport through coffee table discussions, newspapers, the television, radio and social media. In fact, communication was a pivotal phenomenon.

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Topics: Cultural differences, Communication, Language skills, Language training

Ethos, pathos and logos - should we care?

Posted by Heikki Siltala on 24/08/14 10:37

The legendary Greek philosopher Aristotle listed three rhetorical appeals; ethos, pathos and logos. The fourth was wine, but as we already know its appeal well enough, we will leave any further discussion of it till May 1, Midsummer or New Year's Eve.

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Topics: Cultural differences, Communication, Language skills, Language training

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