Reasons for Developing Global Competence

Instructor: Artem Cheprasov
In this lesson, we briefly describe the concept of global competence. Then we go over some of the reasons why it is important to develop global competence from a personal, communal, and global perspective.

Global Competence

Global competence, in so many words, is an individual's ability to use hard and soft skills within the context of a globalized society in order to navigate it successfully. This means appreciating cultural differences, seeking out diversity, and standing up for the rights of the oppressed. It's about becoming a global citizen, in a manner of speaking, as well. There are numerous reasons why someone should develop global competence. In this lesson, we identify many of them and provide examples.

Personal Reasons

So why bother becoming a globally competent individual? After all, it does take some effort. However, there are immense benefits for taking the time to develop these skills. One advantage is becoming a globally competitive employee. Instead of fearing outsourcing, a globally competent individual understands why it occurs and, instead, is able to use it to their advantage.

For example, while some jobs are being outsourced from the U.S. (like those in the IT field) many nations actually look to hire U.S. citizens to work for their firms. Such is the case, for instance, with China's big push to develop their scientific and language arts programs by hiring Westerners to come and work in China.

Another great benefit is the amazing experiences one will have interacting with different cultures, seeing new places, and even learning new languages.

Community-Based Reasons

There are also many community-based reasons to develop global competence. This could mean an individual's home community or wherever they end up in life.

Communities throughout the world can benefit from globally competent individuals as they, for instance, spread around the ideas of decentralized business models, human rights, democracy, and so on. But a globally competent individual is going to be, by definition, sensitive to local cultural elements. This means they will have the ability to use a great deal of tact and cultural understanding when introducing ideas. For example, introducing democracy via the invasion of a foreign nation is out of the question and extraordinarily poor and outdated thinking.

On the flip side, a globally competent individual's own native community (be it local or national) can benefit from using elements of global competence. By embracing refugees from a foreign land, a local community will not only help those in need but benefit from an influx of new ideas and experiences. A specific example the popularity of ethnic or fusion foods. Another great benefit is that many such refugees can help their new local community better navigate potential threats coming from abroad by, for example, serving within the intelligence community in a manner no indigenous, globally-incompetent, individual ever could.

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