Cultural competence focuses on Awareness, Knowledge, and Skills. The objective is have participants leave with (a) STRATEGIES to improve their ability to work effectively in multicultural environments, and (b) communication, problem-solving, and other SKILLS necessary to work in diverse organizations. Acquiring cultural competence is a life-long learning process.
The BENEFITS of Cultural Competency include being aware of our own culture and values, acquiring culture-specific knowledge about cultures other than our own, looking at our biases and how these may impact interactions, flexibility and ability to adapt to diversity, effective communication skills across differences, and the ability to mediate cross-cultural conflicts. These are desirable outcomes to strive toward in the workplace.
The COST of not attaining these culturally-competent skills has negative consequences for all organizations: Lower productivity and poor performance, high employee absenteeism and turnover, conflict and tension among staff, discrimination complaints, loss of time and productivity due to misunderstandings, and lack of innovation and problem-solving.