Coaching World Issue 18: May 2016 - Page 18

RECOMMENDED READING our mindsets to incorporate a more ethnorelative, multicultural perspective. Coaching Across Cultures: New Tools for Leveraging National, Corporate and Professional Differences, by Philippe Rosinski, MCC (Nicholas Brealey Publishing, 2003) The Role of CQ in Cross-cultural Coaching “The Effectiveness of Expatriate Coping Strategies: The Moderating Role of Cultural Distance, Position Level, and Time on the International Assignment,” by Paula Caligiuri and Guenter Stahl (in Journal of Applied Psychology, July 2005, Vol. 90, No. 4, pages 603–615) Handbook of Cultural Intelligence: Theory, Measurement and Application, edited by Soon Ang and Linn Van Dyne (Routledge, 2008) 18 18 Coaching Coaching World World Leading with Cultural Intelligence: The Real Secret to Success, by David Livermore (2nd ed., AMACOM, 2015) The four-step CQ cycle (shown on the previous page) illustrates how coaches can, firstly, leverage their own CQ to bring a crosscultural perspective into the coaching process. The invitation is for us to stretch ourselves out of our own cultural comfort zone and cross over to “the other side” by questioning our own mental cultural schemas comprising cultural stereotypes, biases, prejudices and assumptions, and remain open to reframing our schemas, to fully make sense of our cross-cultural experiences. Only then can we connect our cross-cultural journey experiences and stories to those of our diverse clients. How well we leverage our CQ in our coaching repertoire will influence the rapport and emotional trust we can build with our crosscultural clients. Learning CQ in the Coaching Process Of course, not everyone can just switch their cultural lens on and off with equal dexterity. Our CQ is dependent on the depth and breadth of our multicultural experiences and our own psychological makeup. Coaches with a higher CQ tend to be willing to challenge and reflect on the accuracy of their own mental cultural schemas and worldviews. They are also more willing to recalibrate their perceptions of the clients they work with and adjust their coaching approach accordingly. That being said, coaches who are genuinely motivated to learn how to bridge more effectively across cultures will tap into their CQ Motivation (CQ3) to drive their cross-cultural learning and experimentation. CQ, unlike IQ, can be learned and developed over time. Our job is to help our clients uncover their hidden competitive commitments related to their own limiting beliefs and constraints placed by their own cultural setting. We help them experiment with new habits, changing the way they view their foreign environments to form new assumptions and beliefs. However, our coaching conversations are heavily influenced by our own cultural backgrounds, which in turn impact our emotional filters. We need to recognize that despite our valiant efforts to stay “neutral,” our cultural selves cannot be divorced from taking part in the coaching conversations at multiple levels of consciousness. Therefore, it is important for us to also engage in experiential learning and experimentation to address our own cultural blind spots and improve our own cross-cultural competence before we can help our clients make sense of their VUCA environments and their internal struggles to adapt. I truly believe that both the coach’s and client’s potential are unleashed when we coach from a crosscultural perspective. We just need to remember to have our “bifocal” lens on so that, while we stay authentic to our “cultural self,” we simultaneously have our clients’ cultural selves in plain view, and together, we leverage and celebrate our cultural differences to make our diverse world a better place to work, play and live in. © 2016 Fenny Ang. All Rights Reserved.