Your Intended Message

Cross Culture Communication: Katja Schleicher

October 6, 2022

How to boost your cross culture communication results

Your culture is simply your perspective of the world

Episode 115 (Katja is based in Den Hagg, Netherlands)

In this conversation with Katja Schleicher, we explore:

  • What are the challenges of cross culture communication?
  • How to establish a positive relationship
  • How to recognize the traps that might blind you to your bias
  • Why you need to be a tourist more often
  • How food can bridge the cultural divide
  • How to build your multicultural team
  • When you should not use Oregano

About Katja Schleicher

KATJA SCHLEICHER knew already at an early stage that talking is gold and silence the beginning of all troubles…

Known for her provocative style and her sense of humor on stage she looks deeper in our communication troubles – and is not afraid to talk about them.

After her studies (German & English language & Literature. Linguistics & psychology) she pursued an international career in PR, Advertising and Corporate Communications for Media & HiTech Companies.

For more than a decade she now passionately enables effective & empathic communication with all the clients she works with. From big banking, conservative pharma to ambitious startups. From 1:1 dialogues to the big stages.

With three languages, two passports and an European heart, Katja travels across borders constantly to bring people and ideas closer through communication. She speaks at conferences about communicative misunderstandings and how to initiate change through communication.

Learn more about Katja and her programs at the website



Excerpts from this conversation with Katja Schleicher:


You know, you correctly said that I really love to be around people that come from different backgrounds and mindsets, because and that brings me to intercultural communication in a straight line.

This is where it's getting interesting. Where everything is the same or a similar a over time, it's getting less interesting. We are getting sloppy. We think, oh, yeah, he or she, they will understand me anyway, even if I do not pronounce clearly, even if I'm, you know, I'm in sloppiness, right?

And that was one of the reasons why I liked the title of your podcast,  Your Intended Message so much, often the intention doesn't get through, it simply gets lost in translation.

And you see that not just in business, you see that in relationships. A lot. That after a certain time, it's like Yeah, yeah, you know, oh, yeah, George. Yeah, yeah, yeah, of course. I love George. Yeah. Huh. And the intention behind it kind of gets lost.

So in intercultural context, this is one of the biggest challenges and that is one of the most beautiful things that you it's never getting boring, because there's always an impulse.

There's always a notch there was always something that happens, right and the end, especially in intercultural contexts, we try we as human beings, it's in us, we try in particular to get our intended message across and we take effort we, we check back.

If you ever had a relationship with someone from a different cultural or language background, you know that you make double and triple Sure, okay. Did sweetheart get what I meant? Or did he just hear my words and that to me is the way we should face all the challenges in intercultural communication.

So, accept there is someone from a different intercultural background and again, intercultural gene does not mean just countries, it could be in the same company that you speak to someone from the purchasing department and if you're from the marketing department, I can assure you there are quite some cultural differences and communication, right?

So, the more foreign the more strange, the better, because that keeps us sharp, it keeps us alert.

Of course, this is tiresome. Yes, it is much more easy if you have somebody mumbling and you know what you mean? Yep. But on the other hand, it gets boring, so fast. So, this is so the challenge to bring it back to this one send the challenge is in intercultural communication.

That is, it really requires everything from you. But it rewards you with everything is now you will learn so many new things in my perspective.



How do you feel about a leader in the workforce? Learning more about the other people's culture, language or beliefs? How can they do that without appearing to intrude?



Now there is this wonderful balance between interrogation or intruding and curiosity.

And what I invite my clients to do very often is to treat their teams as a destination and behave themselves as the best tourist they could be.

Because when we go somewhere, we are curious, right? We are usually more wired for question. When we started, you just asked me in German, "Wo ist der Bahnhof?" 

Where is the station? Right? So as a tourist we are wired for questions, because we know that maybe our message or intended message is not getting through. So asking a question is very helpful here.

And if you're if you're in leadership position, and you have a team to lead, I recommend that highly be a tourist in your own team. Be curious, not intruding and interrogating.

But be curious. Like you see, you go on a sightseeing tour every day.

Oh, George, I've never I've never seen someone doing this or that in my entire life. How did that evolve? Right? It's like, if I will be your boss, George, I'd be on go on George sightseeing.

So I think that this is because then people get a chance to respond. Right? You could tell me no oh, you know, that evolved like this or that. And this is the reasons why I'm very picky with my words.

And all these all the things we already we already talked about. And that is when you when you build as if when you're when you're leading a team, or you build a reservoir that you can use when you when you have a tough time with your team.

So be curious.


Your Intended Message is the podcast about how you can boost your career and business success by improving your communication skills. We’ll examine the aspects of how we communicate one-to-one, one to few and one to many – plus that important conversation, one to self.

In these interviews we will explore presentation skills, public speaking, conversation, persuasion, negotiation, sales conversations, marketing, team meetings, social media, branding, self talk and more.


Your host is George Torok

George is a specialist in executive communication skills. That includes conversation and presentation. He’s fascinated by way we communicate and influence behaviors. He delivers training and coaching programs to help leaders and promising professionals deliver the intended message for greater success.


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