“Trusting is hard. Knowing who to trust, even harder” wrote the US fantasy and science fiction author Maria v. Snyder in her book, Poison Study.
Relationships – be they private or business – cannot be developed and become meaningful if they are not based on mutual trust. With the arrival of a global disruptive factor called Covid19, we are required to keep physical contact to a minimum, be “socially distant”, refrain from kissing, hugging, or shaking hands. Greetings and etiquette show only one side of trust-building, even though a handshake deal can be in theory legally enforceable. A weak handshake, or an overly strong one can influence our impression of a prospective business partner, and hence our opinion, like or dislike of this person.
As the pandemic brought the whole world to a halt, travel stopped, business and learning were shifted to virtual platforms, we also came to realize that the “new normal” will be indeed very much more virtual than it ever was in the pre-covid19 world. Virtual cooperation, and hence business, will increase and the big question is: How will trust be built in new ways and through yet little-explored channels ?
The game explores situations involving trust and building-trust, and changing tides in the world during and post pandemic. In a perspective wider than just the inevitable changes in etiquette, we shall look at how cultural reactions are connected with understanding the pandemic and its interpretations.
Global Rejig by Dr. Zeina Matar, Maria Todosiychuk, and students at DHBW University in Stuttgart, Germany: Rahul Purohit and Shubhanshu Shubhanshu
Dr. Zeina Matar, an intercultural business consultant headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany. She is an expert in Middle Eastern cultural issues and lectures about Doing Business with Arabs and Intercultural Negotiation at the Baden-Wuerttemberg Cooperative State University, and a consultant in projects involving Germany and the Middle East. She works in Arabic, English, French and German.
Maria Todosiychuk is an international trainer and consultant in intercultural competence based in Moscow, and since 2010 a developer of intercultural intelligence games and exercises. She conducts trainings and workshops on Edutainment and Gamification for Teaching Intercultural Intelligence in Belgium and France, as well as virtual sessions for interculturalists and educators from all over the world. Maria's international experience includes intercultural intelligence and intercultural gamification trainings for international groups in Russia and in Europe. Maria is a SIETAR Russia member, Richard Lewis Communications Licensed Partner, international conferences presenter and author of numerous articles on intercultural competence.
Rahul Purohit is a marketer, a public speaker, and an engineer. He has a profound interest in intercultural nuances. Having completed his bachelor’s in Electronics Engineering, he is currently pursuing an MBA in Marketing Communication and International Business from Stuttgart, Germany. He has worked in the field of digital marketing and search engine optimization. Rahul is from a culturally diverse country, India. He is fond of interacting with people from different cultures and countries. He likes to understand how different values, beliefs, and experiences have shaped people's perspective about life in general. Rahul speaks Hindustani, English, and is learning German.
Shubhanshu Shubhanshu is a native of India, graduated with a bachelors in Electronics and Communication Engineering in 2015. He has 4 years of work experience in a multi-national IT company and has worked with clients of the Big-4 in consulting business. He is currently pursuing his masters in Business Administration, specialization in International Business. Shubhanshu has achieved laurels at various levels during his professional career ranging from clients, to his functional division, his managers and leads. He has also won a national level short story writing contest and received a congratulatory personalized letter from SHIV KHERA. Currently Shubhanshu is an International student at DHBW Stuttgart, Germany.