3 Insightful Reasons Why Cultural Intelligence is Important


Even as Manila For A Day, we started not as a run-of-the-mill tour company, but as a cultural intelligence solutions provider. This decision to focus on more than just guided tours resulted in CQPH’s specialized consulting brand, Savant Solutions, which aims to deliver educational and professional solutions to those that can recognize the importance of cultural intelligence, or CQ, in our daily lives.

So, what is CQ?

You can go ahead and Google the term “cultural intelligence” if you want a more academic answer, but simply put, CQ is a measure of a person’s capability to function effectively across cultures—whether in terms of professional or personal relationships. So why is it important?

You live in a globalized country

I grew up near the tail-end of the 90s and I suffered through the age of pre-broadband internet. That also means that I watched the Philippines globalize from an agrarian supplier to the Asian regional headquarters of almost every conglomerate in the world.

The country’s societal and professional landscape is so diverse—whether they are fellow countrymen from another local province or expatriates from a different continent altogether—that everyone is required the ability to thrive in a multicultural environment. A low CQ is an unnecessary disadvantage you can’t afford.

Whether it’s colleagues from another province or from another country, you’re now living in a nation where you’re more and more likely to work in a multicultural environment. A low CQ is an unnecessary disadvantage you can’t afford.

You are your culture

Yes, there are many parts to you as an individual and many aspects of what makes you who you are, but taken as a whole, you are your culture. And now that you also live in a globalized, intricately connected world; your culture and how it interacts with the cultures of those around you matter more than you can imagine.

Your ability to understand your own culture and how it interacts with the cultures of those around you can have far-reaching effects in every aspect of your life, including your professional and personal relationships. From the way you talk, to the values you display, to the social norms you follow—you carry your culture with you, so you need to learn how to project it effectively.

Know thy enemy…

Sun Tzu said it best, but it still bears repeating more than a millennium later: you must know your enemy if you want to overcome them. Just as you are your culture, so are the people you interact with on a day-to-day basis. This knowledge of how others perceive the world is an invaluable tool in creating appropriate strategies for almost any given situation—whether you’re trying to win a date or win a war.

There you have it! Just a few—but important—reasons on why cultural intelligence is essential to you and your daily life. Still not convinced? Get in touch at savant@culturalintelligence.ph to find out how we can help you. After all, a Savant session is worth more than a thousand words!

Dustin is the founder and lead program developer of CQPH. He’s a history nerd and loves using history as a focal lens for understanding contemporary culture. When he’s not having fun guiding, Dustin uses his cultural intelligence expertise as business development consultant and helps his clients build businesses from the ground up. Shoot him a line at founder@culturalintelligence.ph.