Summary of Cultural Intelligence

People Skills for Global Business

Berrett-Koehler, more...

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Cultural Intelligence book summary
From teamwork to negotiations, cultural differences shape business transactions – so get smart about culture’s impact.


7 Overall

9 Applicability

6 Innovation

7 Style


This brief book offers an easy-to-read description of what it takes to adapt to a culturally diverse business environment. David C. Thomas and Kerr Inkson make it clear that you can learn cultural intelligence only from experience, not from reading books. However, their manual does provide a basic introduction that will be extremely helpful to people experiencing cultural shock or dislocation. The most distinctive feature of the authors’ treatment of the subject is their insistence on mindfulness as the fundamental first step in developing cultural intelligence. getAbstract believes this book will be particularly useful for businesspeople embarking on expatriate assignments, but anyone working in a business context that includes diverse cultures will benefit from reading it – and thus will become better equipped to get some of that all-important experience.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How to work in a business context with people from cultures other than your own;
  • How to develop mindfulness about culture; and
  • How to accumulate a repertoire of culturally appropriate behaviors.


The Basics
Dealing with people from various cultures is necessary in today’s global business environment. Even those who do not travel for work may find other cultures traveling to them. International communication is a fact of daily business life. In this environment, technologies, markets...
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About the Authors

David C. Thomas is a professor of international management at Simon Fraser University. Kerr Inkson is professor of management at the Auckland campus of Massey University, New Zealand.

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