My first deep immersion international experience came at 17, when I was an exchange student in Germany during my last year in High School. The biggest discovery I made was that there was more to difference than just language. Germans had a different perspective of life than I'd grown up with, and they handled it in a different way. It was a time when I realised my way wasn't the only way. It was a time of seeing both the gifts -- and the challenges -- of cross-cultural understanding. I've been fascinated with it ever since.
At the Beyond Storytelling conference last year, I met Joanna Sell, who is working in this field, using narrative to foster cross-cultural understanding. She supports cross-cultural teams, people moving from one culture to another and groups and organisations seeking to make the most out of their international people's expertise.
In this interview, I talk to her about how she stumbled onto her passion and she gives some very practical tips about how you can use story to engage across culture.