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"Working as an auditor"- experiences outside of your home culture and what u gained

olasunmola 1 / -  
Oct 10, 2010   #1
Working as an auditor with akintola Williams deliote offered me the unique opportunity of meeting various clients across Nigeria. I experienced culture shock in Zamfara the northern and predominantly Muslim region. My audit team's original plan was to get there early proceed with our work and complete the job within a week. The female members of our team had dressed in formal trouser suits for a meeting with our client. However on arrival in zamfara our chauffeur politely told us that this was a state where the sharia law was in effect and as such the dress code of the female members of our team was inappropriate. I was shocked and confused, because i didn't see anything inappropriate for a business meeting. We summarily had to get to a clothes store where under the guidance of our chauffeur we got a number of scarves, and skirt suits.

I subsequently learned that dress codes, prohibition of alcohol consumption and restriction of sexes is justified by the teachings of the Holy Quran and if the indigenes practiced them then as a visitor i have to accept this. The experience taught me that cultural diversity is inevitable, understanding and tolerance is what the society requires. Respecting the diversity of cultures and traditions of others has given me perspective, enhanced my ability to appreciate diversity, and ability to excel in any environment.

linmark 2 / 328 7  
Oct 12, 2010   #2
This is an interesting essay. Could you include something about how the meeting was received (by the Nigerians) once you dressed appropriately according to the local custom and what was the result of your meeting? What would you do next time around if you had to repeat the audit in Nigeria? How does this compare and contrast to your home culture? Besides dress, did you have to behave differently as a woman? What would be the difference for a male colleague? What is it like to be a professional woman in your culture versus what you experienced in Nigeria. Is it a religious norm or sexual differentiation?

Your perspective will make the essay have more depth of meaning than purely dress code cultural adaptation.

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