Beyond Ready CQ

Beyond Ready CQ logo

"We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are." - Anais Nin

The Farmer School of Business is committed to ensuring its graduates are “BEYOND READY” for their lives and careers. The world is becoming increasingly diverse and complex. Within this environment, effective use of diversity within the workforce has proven to impact positively on both organizational and individual performance. According to the latest McKinsey report on Diversity and Inclusion. embracing different cultures and viewpoints drives innovation, improves decision-making, increases employee productivity and retention, and leads to higher profitability.

However, when working in culturally diverse organizations, most people struggle to communicate and work effectively. The key to being BEYOND READY to adapt to rapidly-changing and diverse environments is Cultural Intelligence [CQ].

The Farmer School of Business is developing students who are BEYOND READY for the complex business environment that awaits them in the workplace, marketplace, and society. The BEYOND READY CQ program is designed to provide students with a unified strategy and skill set for how to relate and work across cultural differences at home and abroad. All components of the program will be available as curricular offerings to Farmer School of Business students. 

The Importance of Cultural Intelligence

Cultural Intelligence (CQ) is an individual’s capability to adapt and function effectively in different cultural environments and situations characterized by cultural diversity. Adaptability is about keeping an open mind, willingness to innovate, taking risks, allowing yourself to make mistakes and learn from them; it’s about practicing feeling comfortable with the uncomfortable. Cultural intelligence is especially important in stressful situations, often experienced when dealing with those who are different in any number of ways including demographic traits such as race, age, gender, nationality, sexual orientation, and cognitive traits such as thinking preferences, values, and cognitive abilities.

As such, our goal is to prepare students for differences that go beyond traditional definitions of “diversity”.  We must prepare our students for differences that are may not be readily-observable but must be observed for effective innovation, problem-solving, decision-making, collaboration and communication; those differences that exist between any two people and within any group of people, regardless of their own demographic traits.

What is Cultural Intelligence [CQ]? 

Descriptions of the four CQ componentsCultural intelligence can be divided into four CQ capabilities: motivation (CQ Drive), cognition (CQ Knowledge), meta-cognition (CQ Strategy) and behavior (CQ Action). The four capabilities stem from the intelligence-based approach to intercultural adjustment and performance.

Most notably, Cultural intelligence is not innate: students can develop it, along with other key work skills, when provided with an awareness of the four factors of Cultural Intelligence and how each factor contributes to cultural adaptability.

More than 100 peer-reviewed journal articles by scholars and research teams from all over the world document the scientific knowledge about Cultural intelligence. CQ is related to emotional intelligence (EQ), but it goes a step further. People with high emotional intelligence can pick up on the emotions, wants, and needs of others. Those with high cultural intelligence are attuned to the values, beliefs, attitudes, and body language of people from different cultures; and they use this knowledge to interact with empathy and understanding. People with high cultural intelligence are not experts in every culture; rather, they use observation, empathy, and intelligence to read people and situations, and to make informed decisions about why others are acting as they are. They also use cultural intelligence to monitor their own actions. Rather than making quick judgments or relying on stereotypes, individuals with high cultural intelligence observe what is happening, and adapt their own behavior accordingly.

While workplaces are becoming more diverse, research has shown that diverse teams underperform homogeneous teams if the team has low cultural intelligence.

Assessing Your Baseline Cultural Intelligence

When students enter the Farmer School, you will take the CQ Pro online self-assessment of your cultural assessment, administered by the Cultural Intelligence Center,  to set a baseline for your growth in the Farmer School of Business. Each student will receive a full assessment report that details your score on each of the four key dimensions and related sub-dimensions. You also see how they compare (low, moderate, high) to worldwide norms. We will re-assess your CQ in your final semester to capture the development of your CQ skills while at Miami.  


Planning to Develop Your Cultural Intelligence | BUS 106

In BUS 106, first-year students will participate in class activities to understand the concepts in the CQ report and how the data can be used in your personal development. You will create a personal plan for developing your CQ through participation in curricular, co-curricular, and extra-curricular activities at Miami University.

Diversity and Work Skills | BUS 101

You will also take a module on diversity in BUS 101 within the First-Year Integrated Core. Here the focus will be on both identity and cognitive diversity and psychological safety with an application to team effectiveness and collaboration. 

“The marketing and business leaders of today and tomorrow must necessarily have as a fundamental aptitude an understanding of the cultural diversity that defines consumers’ and colleagues’ priorities around the world,” Forbes community director Jenny Rooney explained. “Culturally intelligent leaders must guide culturally intelligent teams to drive not just brand but business growth. This curriculum will help the leaders of tomorrow and the most effective marketers collaborate in a diverse global business environment.”Students will focus on cognitive diversity using the HBDI assessment of thinking preferences. Here you will discover your core thinking preferences, understand when and how to stretch to non-preferred thinking styles when the situation requires it, and know your cognitive tendencies under stress so as to evolve into a Whole-Brain leader. 

Given the course’s focus on building effective collaboration skills, students will also learn about Google’s Project Aristotle’s five dimensions of team effectiveness. These five dimensions include Psychological Safety, Dependability, Structure and Clarity, Meaning, and Impact. These concepts will be applied using the Center for Business Leadership’s Farmer Team Initiative.

You will put all of these skill development tools into practice when you work in a “Diverse By Design” team to take on the FYIC Client Challenge at the end of the semester. And you better have your collaboration skills down - it’s your team against 125 others.

FSB Diversity Requirement

FSB Students must complete at least one course that provides an understanding of business diversity perspectives. The approved list of courses includes courses from all divisions and may overlap with Foundation courses, Thematic Sequence, major, or electives.

Global Readiness Certificate

FSB students may also elect to take the FSB’s Global Readiness Certificate through Miami University’s Global Initiatives program to build their Cultural Intelligence. The certificate allows students to take specific courses within their Miami plan and participate in various other activities designed to allow students to:

  • Acquire interdisciplinary global knowledge
  • Gain intercultural competencies
  • Develop culturally sensitive mindsets necessary to live, work and interact with diverse individuals in our local and global communities

FSB Global Studies

FSB students can choose from a variety of study abroad and internship programs in locations around the world duringspring, fall, summer and winter terms. Students can choose to study for an entire semester in London, Barcelona, Budapest and Maastrict or complete a semester-long internship in Australia and the Pacific Rim. 

“This program is perfectly designed to teach the new skills needed to be successful in the complex business world, and it represents the new way to teach and learn the necessary skills to be a great business leader. It’s good for the students as well as for all the business executives who are already working out there,” PDC Brands CEO Alex Tosolini said. “The program is so rich and relevant that it should be at the core of every business class.”You can also course semester-long programs in both summer and winter terms in locations as varied as Asia, Europe, the Mediterranean, and Canada in the summer with shorter programs over winter term in Asia, Australia, Latin America and Europe.

Business in the Global Market Certificate Program

The Business in the Global Market Certificate Program is designed to complement any business major in the Farmer School of Business. Previously the China Business Certificate Program, Business in the Global Market allows students to expand their global knowledge and focus on an entire region.

Upon enrolling in the Business in the Global Market certificate program, you will select one of four regional concentrations: Africa and the Middle East, Asia and Oceania, Central and South America, or Europe. As you move through the curriculum, you will engage in language practice, cultural engagement, an overseas experience, and business coursework, all related to your selected concentration. 

Farmer School of Business Study Abroad Scholarships

The Farmer School of Business has been fortunate to have generous donors to support study abroad opportunities for FSB students. Scholarship award amounts vary, and may reach up to $3000. Eligible students may apply for both needs-based and merit-based scholarships. Funding for study-abroad may also be available through Miami’s Global Initiatives program.

Measuring Beyond Ready CQ

FSB students will retake the CQ self-assessment during their senior capstone course to measure all four key dimensions of CQ as they move in the workforce. With your BEYOND READY CQ score, you can demonstrate to potential employers that you have the skills required to succeed in the diverse and global business environment that awaits you after the Farmer School of Business.

For More Information:

Please contact Dr. Gillian Oakenfull, Farmer School of Business Faculty Director of Diversity and Inclusion and Professor of Marketing at