Essay: How to create and affect attitudes
Words have indeed the power to create and affect attitudes and influence behavior and perceptions. A difference in word choice can change the imagery created. For example, fire described as an orange, cozy flame warming the soul and a cruel red tongue consuming all within its reach creates different emotions by way of words in the minds of the receiver.
These words describe the same element, but create a different imagery, the same way different words hold different meaning in different cultures. For the Arab, words such as family would describe a setting where he is the leader and members have to all but listen to him. Whereas to the Chinese this word would entail a collective group of his immediate and extended family where the head is his grandfather and he is considered as an important but less powerful and less significant member. Therefore when the manager wishes to appeal to the employees’ roots he should be very careful in referring to family, because while for the Arab, the Arab might be the sole provider, the Chinese employee would feel that the manager was trying to make him feel insignificant in the decision making processes.