Margaret Bornhorst Cross-Cultural is a cross-cultural consultancy based in Brisbane. It provides innovative and creative solutions to problems and challenges related to cultural and linguistic diversity.
Margaret's interest in culture started in her childhood in the United States as the daughter of a 'foreigner', an Australian war bride, married to a German American. From the moment of her arrival in Australia, Margaret was fascinated by Anglo-Celtic Australian culture and has continued to be an avid observer of this unique culture, and its reaction to immigrant 'others'.
In her early teenage years Margaret discovered an aptitude for languages, later studying French and German to degree level, plus history and education at the University of Queensland. This was followed by acting studies at the National Institute of Dramatic Art in Sydney (NIDA), and a number of years in professional theatre and with ABC radio.
In the 1980s, while Margaret was working with the NSW Department of Housing, she began to include cross-cultural segments in her customer service programs. In this period she was personally influenced by two pioneers of cross-cultural and conflict resolution training in Australia, Ilona Lee and Helena Cornelius.
From 1994 to 2008, Margaret worked with the Bureau of Ethnic Affairs, now Multicultural Affairs Queensland, developing and delivering cross-cultural training programs across Queensland for every vocational area represented by state and local government organisations. During this time, many not-for-profit human services agencies received her training under the Local Area Multicultural Partnership (LAMP) umbrella, and a range of federal departments also contracted her training from time to time.
Specifically, Margaret's experience has included border protection, corrections, customs, education (primary, secondary, tertiary and TFE), electoral services, employment, health, housing, immigration, law enforcement, local government, mental health, natural resources, police, tourism, transport and the full range of the community sector (aged care, child care, family workers, housing, women's services and youth workers.)
Her extensive cross-cultural knowledge and skills are now available to be tapped by businesses of all sizes and by the wider community.
Margaret is particularly passionate about the personal, organisational and social rewards that come from being interested in other cultures. All societies on earth, and people from all ethnic backgrounds, can benefit from curiosity about different ways of conceptualising, doing, experiencing, feeling, interpreting, thinking and understanding.
Margaret Bornhorst holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree (German, French and English) from University of Queensland, a Diploma in Education and a Graduate Certificate in TESOL from the University of Queensland, a Graduate Diploma Social Science from the University of New England, and a Graduate Certificate in Research from QUT. She is an internationally accredited teacher of the Enneagram Personlity Model.
In addition, she is a registered teacher with the Queensland College of Teachers.
She has in recent years deepened her understanding of the challenges of second language learning by teaching English in a Tamil community in Sri Lanka.
Culture-specific Training programs
Margaret Bornhorst Cross-Cultural utilises the cultural and linguistic knowledge and skills of a range of consultants when asked to deliver culture-specific training.