The ability to relate to and work productively in culturally disparate situations is referred to as Cultural Intelligence. It is the ability to cross limits and thrive in a variety of cultures. It expands on our current knowledge of cultural awareness and sensitivity by emphasizing specific capabilities and skillsets required to achieve your goals in culturally-diverse circumstances.
A Cultural intelligence is related to emotional intelligence, but takes it a step further. Individuals with high emotional intelligence can sense other people’s wants, needs, and emotions. Individuals with high cultural intelligence are sensitive to the communication styles, beliefs, and values of people from diverse cultures. They utilize this knowledge to relate to others in a more understanding and empathic manner.
Cultural Intelligence: A solution to racism?
According to research, cultural intelligence not only predicts our efficacy during cross-cultural encounters but is also linked to a variety of other performance results, such as creating inclusive or positive team culture. A person with a high CQ can form an understanding of the heterogeneity represented in a given environment, as well as a strategy for leveraging the group’s diversity and creating impartial experiences for all.
The Cultural Intelligence framework has the potential to be a powerful tool for dealing with racism and building anti-racist organizations and communities. It is a complex process that necessitates deep devotion and a laser-like focus on eradicating systematic racism. It must be driven by the presiding (white) culture, not by Black communities and people.
An anti-racist organization actively works to eliminate racist actions or behaviours, practices, systems, and policies. It is replaced by an all-inclusive and culturally intelligent community whose practices and policies establish impartial opportunities and experiences for all. It also necessitates leadership commitment to be resolute and long-term oriented. There’s no getting around it. There are no shortcuts or quick successes.
The first step in the process is to admit that systematic racism exists and that it has been rooted in many of our systems and organizations since the beginning of our country’s history. Redlining, a type of lending prejudice, is a good example.
Understanding the ARC (Affinity, Reality, and Communication) Triangle
According to L. Ron Hubbard, “Understanding is composed of affinity, reality, and communication.”
The ARC triangle allows you to gain a thorough understanding of people. When you genuinely understand your spouse or partner, children, coworkers, boss, clients, customers, employees, friends, neighbours, you’ll be able to help them, communicate with them, reach agreements, and enjoy their company more.
Some people have more ARC than others. For example, you have a high ARC with a colleague or coworker if you like him or her (Affinity), can talk about a wide range of topics (Communication), and agree on a wide range of topics (Reality). This person gets you, and you understand this person.
You’re also likely to know someone with whom you share a low ARC. You’re unable to reach an agreement (Reality), you dislike the person (Affinity), and you don’t communicate.
Increasing ARC with Anyone
“The triangle of affinity, reality and communication could be called an interactive triangle in that no point of it can be raised without affecting the other two points and raising them, and no point of it can be lowered without affecting the other two points.”—L. Ron Hubbard
All you’ve to do is decide which part of the triangle you want to increase, and the other two parts will rise automatically. For example, suppose you meet a new coworker named Michael and immediately dislike him. Perhaps his appearance or demeanour offends you. You really do not want to talk to him ( C ) or reach an agreement with him ( R ). There’s little to no comprehension.
You decide, however, that you have to understand Michael in order to work with him. You ask yourself, “Which of the points can I increase?” You settle for the C side of the triangle and start communicating with him. “Where have you previously worked?” “Do you have kids?” “How long have you resided in this area?”.
Consequently, you learn that he has three children who are roughly the same age as yours. You share a common experience here, so you talk about kids. You find yourself nodding in agreement with Richard (R ). You realize you like Michael after only a few minutes (A). You have a better understanding of each other than before. You’re excited to collaborate with him.
This is the power of the ARC triangle. You can create or rehabilitate an amazing relationship with anyone irrespective of culture if you have this knowledge. ARC coupled with cultural intelligence, you have the ability to lead multicultural teams and organizations in ways that better your products, your people and your community at large by eradicating this idea that one culture is superior.