Color in Culture

I was recently in Vancouver, British Columbia (Canada) on business and noticed this city enjoys enormous cultural and ethnic diversity. In fact, I also noticed that out of the hundreds of tour buses in the city, there were a fair number of red ones, specifically catering to Chinese tourists.

As a multicultural communications expert, I immediately identified this as an excellent example of the value of understanding small cultural nuances and adapting them to your business model in a way that virtually ensures success.

There are various colors in Chinese culture that are considered auspicious. Red, corresponding with fire, symbolizes good fortune and joy. Red is found everywhere during Chinese New Year and other holidays and family gatherings. Red is strictly forbidden at funerals as it is a traditionally symbolic color of happiness.

And isn’t “happiness” what you are striving to deliver to your guests, customers and clients?

 And how better to deliver on that than providing those guests with a small gesture of cultural understanding, like a red tour bus?

Diversity is reality. We are all connected in this global marketplace where knowledge and skills not only mean strength, it can also mean your economic survival.

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