I don’t mean breakdown as feelings or mind breakdown but the communication breakdown.
The first world problem.
The improvement of communicational technology has accelerated our connection speed by virtual communication but the same time this has greatly reduces face-to-face communication. It is truly hard to justify this but this is the reality.
For the first 2 days, all of us didn’t have any mobile data or local sim card. We were trying to entertain ourselves by talking to each other, knowing each others. It was great. Ice-breaking, talking. We had some real good time.
On the second day finally we managed to obtain our mobile data so that we are able to connect to the internet to do our assignments in future or for me is Facebook (it is my drug and I was having withdrawal syndrome, thank god).
And well, fast forward to day 7(12/6/2013). Today. Throughout the training, we take turns to do the presentations in front of each other. Obviously everyone is fed up with the monotonous presentation. This is an inevitable situation and we have to do this for perhaps more than a month. People are so concentrate and attentive at their respective smartphones, go facebooking, whatsapping, etc. Leaving the presenters idle when they are hoping someone’s responses. Pathetic. We don’t talk that much anymore.
For the second part, the breakdown might also mainly due to some sorta language barrier and racial segregation. In our team of 11 people, we have 7 locals (HK), 1 mainlander, 2 Malaysian (one is me), and one Israeli. Naturally English is our common understandable language, therefore we used it as the mean of communication. Oh well, maybe not. Personally as Malaysian Chinese I’m blessed that I know canto, english, mandarin and malay. However, for others, such as the Israeli guy in our group he is sorta unfortunate as he is like any caucasion guy who couldn’t speak or understand mando and canto. Sad for him. He always has hard time trying to blend in as the locals often uses canto and mando to talk, isolating him. Although some(locals) might realize this, it seems like this situation hasn’t been changing and I think that if even I try to ask them to speak in eng they will also somehow change channel. This is hard for them too, given that they have been speaking canto since forever, it is somehow difficult to change the way they speaks.
Another problem arises. Because we are working with the NGO Community partner(CP), our employers(CP) are with thick Ghanian accent that sometimes even me has some hard time understanding what they said. But I guess my understanding is way better than other given I’m more experience and used to listen to different accents.