By Nathalie Halcrow, content Creator/Editor, RW3 CultureWizard | might 31, 2019 12:50:27 afternoon | Cross-Cultural Communication


Body language is among the an ext nuanced facets of intercultural communication. That is also one the the many essential—the method people refer respect, disagreement, or concurrence are frequently conveyed through physical proximity, facial expressions, or eye contact.

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Hand gestures space one together essential part of non-verbal communication, and they frequently have various implications in different social contexts. Fortunately, plenty of of this gestures are easy to protect against so you don’t confuse or offend local colleagues, customers and clients. Take into consideration the adhering to gestures and also some options to modify your body language:


Many western cultures, particularly the US and Canada, gesture towards someone or something with their index finger, however this is considered impolite in number of European, Latin American and African nations. The is an especially rude in China, Japan, and also Indonesia.

In some European and Middle east countries, it is customary to suggest with your middle finger. However, this gesture is really offensive in most Western nations and considered impolite in countless other countries, specifically when taken out of context.

Best Practice: When girlfriend gesture towards a human being or meaningless object, merely use your entire hand.


There are numerous cultures where a thumbs-up suggests that other is great or well done. In Italy, Greece, Iran, and also Iraq, however, this is an violation gesture.

The “Ok” sign is also a typical gesture to show a optimistic reaction, however in France, the symbol method “zero” or “worthless.” Furthermore, in Venezuela, Brazil, and Turkey the gesture is actually offensive, especially to LGBT+ people.

Best Practice: Learn how to say “yes” or “okay” in a neighborhood language, or asking a local what hand gesture is appropriate.


Curling your index finger toward you v you palm challenge upward is a usual gesture come beckon who to come toward you. But in China, Japan, Singapore, and other components of eastern Asia, the gesture has actually a very negative connotation. In the Philippines, you can even be arrested for making use of it.

Best Practice: When friend gesture come beckon someone, that is much better to face your palm downward and make small sweeping activities toward yourself.


Crossing one’s finger is a common method of expressing hope because that luck or good fortune in numerous cultures. However, in Vietnam, this is thought about a an extremely vulgar gesture.

Best Practice: Cultivating positivity for one’s family and also community are an extremely important in Vietnamese culture. To express a wish for this sort of hopeful energy, carry your palms with each other at your sternum and bow her head contempt forward.


In many cultures, the is common to suggest the number two by hold up your index and also middle fingers. The authorize has additionally called the “peace sign” or can indicate “V” for “victory.” However, in nations such together the UK, Ireland, Australia, and also India, it can be offensive to produce a “V” through your fingers if your palm is dealing with toward you.

Best Practice: It is better to indicate the number two by holding your thumb and also index finger up.


In the center East, use both hands during a handshake. Use your best hand to grasp their hand, and your left hand to grasp their forearm close to the elbow.In the center East, North and also sub-Saharan afri nations, that is considered unclean to hand objects to civilization with her left hand.In East asian countries, present and receive items with both hands.

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