Staying Afloat in the Hospitality Industry: The Importance of Intercultural Communication
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This study examines the importance of intercultural communication for career development in two segments of the hospitality industry, cruise and hotel. Three topics are explored: (1) the perceived relative importance of intercultural communication skills for career development, (2) whether differences exist between native and non-native English speakers in the importance assigned to intercultural communication, and (3) whether differences exist between cruise and hotel managers regarding the extent to which intercultural communication is perceived as important to career development. The sample for the original study consisted of 77 cruise ship directors and 111 hotel general managers. All 188 participants completed a Likert-style questionnaire. The questionnaire was designed to collect information on the personal characteristics and skills perceived to be critical to managers? career development in the hotel or cruise industry. Demographic information was also collected. Descriptive statistics, Pearson Product Moment Correlations, Independent Samples t Tests, and content analysis were conducted. Analyses indicated that the respondents perceive intercultural communication to be moderately important in the hospitality industry, that non-native English speakers perceive intercultural communication skills as more important to career development than native English-speakers, and that cruise ship directors perceive intercultural communication skills as more important for career success than hotel general managers. In addition, the results suggest a need for hospitality practitioners to improve upon and hospitality educators to teach intercultural communication skills to facilitate the career development of hospitality managers. Future directions for research are also suggested.
intercultural communication; cruise industry; hospitality industry; career development; native English speakers
dissertation or thesis