The Culture of Pitching

This paper concentrates on a case of intercultural communication, i.e the patterns of interaction between people from different cultures as they engage in mutual meaning making, in the setting of highly competitive and very international entrepreneurial scene in Silicon Valley, California, USA. People from all around the world with entrepreneurial aspirations flock here to find investors, mentors and good teams to build “the next big thing”, the next Google, Apple or Facebook to change the world (and make a lot of money while doing so).

In order to start impressing anyone, they need to start with a good “pitch”, a short but compelling story that would impress both the potential investors, customers and a team. While this may seem like an easy thing to do for many American startup entrepreneurs, since the American school system supports public speaking skills and being vocally efficient, many foreigners find it extremely difficult to obtain since they come from a completely different background and culture where proactively speaking out and loudly introducing your (business) ideas is usually frowned upon and seen as something of tasteless self-promotion.

Continue reading