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Isn't cross-cultural cooperation a bit like cross-cultural marriage?

I've been thinking about this issue for a long time. As you may already know, I am Russian (partly Ukrainian) and I have a Western/American mentality to some extent due to the years spent among American and European missionaries. Well, in 1998 I met a man in my church who always looked at me as if I was his worst enemy. I was even a little bit afraid of him. After some time we kind of started communicating since he became a student in our Bible College and I was interpreting there. That's when I found out that he was just a very shy person and that I totally misinterpreted his look. And I loved his accent :) We got married in 2001. That's my husband Albert and our daughter Delia (the picture was taken a couple years ago at a dinosaur exhibition).



He has a very characteristic Eastern mentality. In his family everybody is really close to one another, they have a clear family hierarchy and their understanding of what each of the spouses' role in the family is, how a husband and a wife should look like, what they should wear, how they should treat each other etc. He's assimilating slowly and accepting some traits of the Russian mentality. On the other hand, I am also slowly absorbing the Eastern mentality and my behavior changed a lot because I don't want my husband to ever feel embarrassed or uneasy.

Here are some tips for a successful cross-cultural marriage that I've come up with:



That's the work that my husband and I do on the daily basis in order to keep our marriage thriving (ok, maybe that's true for any family, but in cross-cultural families the differences are much sharper).

Doesn't that seem very much like the relationship with our clients all over the world? Please take a look at another diagram:

I can't help thinking how amazingly similar those two types of relationships are. In the first case, you do all those things because you love your spouse. As for the cross-cultural cooperation, you do almost the same because you love your work and you place an emphasis on the long-term cooperation.

What do you think about it? Comments are welcome!

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10 interesting facts about the Russian language

In my previous post I promised to follow with the  interesting info about some other languages. So here are 10 facts about the Russian language which might be of interest to those who are studying it. If you would like to have this list in Russian, please contact me and I will send it to you by email. So, what do I find interesting about my native language?

1. Russian has about 500,000 words, but only 2,000-2,500 of them are used frequently. 100 most frequently used words make 20% of all written and oral speech. A high school graduate's vocabulary usually has 1,500 to 4,000 words. Those who have graduated from a higher educational institution normally have a richer vocabulary consisting of approximately 8,000 words.
2. It's compulsory for all astronauts in the international space station to learn Russian, so we can call it an international language of space :)

Time for another update about guest posts, business, blogging and more!

Hi everybody! First of all, thank you for reading my blog. I love to see that the number of my subscribers is growing every week. That's so inspiring!
I've got some news for you. I am amazed with the way my work and business are developing. Life is getting more and more interesting and, hopefully, these changes will be good for you, too! So, here are my news:

How to Reply To a Negative Feedback About Your Translation

We are humans and we screw up many times!

And receiving a negative feedback about your translation work if one of them.

As translation professionals, we work daily with people from different cultures and backgrounds. So, it is quite important to keep a level of etiquette while we do our business communication.

Whatever your years of experience or your educational background, there are times when daily life affects our business badly. It is how we react to these situations what makes a big difference between professional translation service providers and those who are not.

I was lucky enough when I started my translation career back in 2004 to read about the “A Complaint Is a Gift” business book and receive my training by a true professional Arabic translator.

My colleague taught me the tactics of a professional’s reply to a negative feedback and the book mentions the bright side of receiving a complaint about your work. If the client does not like your work, he can just move to anothe…