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Cultural Differences in Business

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Katja Krope

on 13 April 2016

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Transcript of Cultural Differences in Business

Cultural Differences in Business
Germany
Germany
" Essential business culture guides for the international traveller." Web. 21 September 2014. < http://www.executiveplanet.com/index.php?title=Main_Page>.

"Germany Travel Guide." Family Vacations & Adventure Travel Vacation Packages. Web. 21 September 2014. <http://www.iexplore.com/travel-guide/europe/germany/business>.

"Global Negotiation Resources." Global Negotiation Resources. Web. 24 September 2014. <http://www.globalnegotiationresources.com/>.

"IUhl, Gerhard, and Elke Uhl-Vetter. Business-Etikette in Europa. [New York]: Betriebswirtschaftlicher Verlag Dr. Th. Gabler GWV Fachverlage GmbH, Wiesbaden (GWV), 2007. Print.

"Powell, Mark. IN Company, Upper-Intermediate Student's Book. [Oxford]: Macmillan Publishing Limited, 2002. Print.

"World Travel Guide, Inspiring Articles and Destination Guides for the Stylish Traveller." World Travel Guide : Official Destination Guides. Web. 02September 2014. <http://www.worldtravelguide.net/>.

"Index of /resources/global-etiquette." Index of /resources/global-etiquette. Web. 21 September 2014. <http://www.kwintessential.co.uk/resources/global-etiquette/>.

"Cultural differences in business" - YouTube video. Web. 20 September 2014. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XxFJiIntvv>
Resources:

Exchange of business cards without any ritual
Do

Give a quick firm handshake
Use titles and surname
Cultural Dimensions
According to Hofstede, there are 4 main dimensions in BUSINESS CULTURE:
Power distance (LOW / HIGH)
Uncertainty avoidance
Individualism vs. collectivism
Masculinity vs. femininity

Germans are direct
Firm, brief handshakes at the time of arrival and departure are standard in both business and social relationships
Do

Be calm and collected
Don’t

Hyperbolize
Enter a closed door without knocking


• Meetings follow strict agendas
• Germany is heavily regulated and extremely
bureaucratic
• Business is hierarchical, decision-making is
held at the top of the company
• A made decision will not be changed
Do

Get down to business
Follow contracts strictly
Don’t

Sit before invited and told where to sit
Do too much small talk
Behave confrontational or use high
pressure tactics
Don´t

Be unpunctual
Say „Du“ before invited to use first name
Finland


Business cards are exchanged without formal ritual
Can be printed in English alone or in English and Finnish
Do

Give firm handshake, have direct eye contact, smile
Say your first name and surname
Treat someone's business card with respect
Don´t

Present your business card with
written page down
Meet
Communicate
Finns are direct communicators
Finns are interested in long term relationships
Verbal commitments are considered agreements
Do

Speak succinctly and openly
Focus on business
Don´t

Expect them to tell what
you want to hear
Turn down an invitation to
use sauna
Meet
Communicate
Negotiate
Negotiate
Meetings and business deals are often conducted by telephone or at a sauna
Negotiating is usually a joint problem-solving process
Believe in concept of win-win
Do

Remain calm, unemotional, patient, persistent
Accept the inevitable delays
Don´t

Be uncooperative
Provoke open confrontation or conflict
China
Meet
Handshake when greeting and departing, sometimes with nod of head
Good idea: Translate one side of business card into Chinese
Do

Use professional title or Mr., Mrs., Ms
Present business card with both hands,
with Chinese side facing recipient
Examine business card carefully to
show interest
Don't

Put card in your wallet or pocket
Write on or fold business card
Communicate
Do
Stand a little less than arm’s length from one another
Have direct eye contact
Try to understand what they really mean
Don't
Be too direct
Ask personal questions
Provoke a loss of face
Most Chinese speak in indirect manner
Sometimes what they mean is opposite to what they say
Chinese value relationship building and harmony
Decisions are made by the head of the group
Do

Be patient
Accept their superstition
Don't

Do hard selling
Use pressure tactics
Provoke any sort of conflict or confrontation
Negotiate
Russia
Meet
Do
Give very firm handshake
ladies first
Address with first name and fathers name with proper ending
for males: -owitsch
for females: -ovna
Communicate
Hard to determine the Russian business partners' attitude
Russians speak very directly, which can come across rude but also evasive in order to be polite
Negotiate
Several meetings to come to a decision
Use of pressure techniques and bargaining
Shouting
France
Meet
First meeting mostly to establish relationship
Avoid mid July until mid September
Communicate
Conversing in french is favoured but not expected
Small talk is essential
Negotiate
Negotiations take place after the meal, during coffee
Decisions only taken after lengthy discussions
Great Britain
Meet
Communicate
Good command of English is a great advantage
Read between the lines
Small talk is an essential part of meetings
Negotiate
The British prefer a "straight" and efficient style of discussing
A topic which has been agreed should not be discussed again
Thank you for your attention!
Don't
Give yellow flowers
Refuse a drink when a toast is spoken
Prepare business cards in Russian and English
Bring an interpreter
Don't
Try to discuss political topics
Start talking about business before the host does
Do
Speak a few words of Russian
Do
Address business partner with "madame", "monsieur" and also title
Say goodbye to people one by one
Don't
Give kisses on the cheek on the first meeting
Do
Be informed about french politics, culture and economics
Use stylistic nuances
Don't
Start talking in French and later change to English
Shaking hands is usual on the first meeting but not always necessary on further ones
Do
Express pleasure to meet the other person
Ask rhetorical question "How do you do?"
Don't
pad their shoulder or other physical contact
Do
Talk about weather, holidays, customs and especially sports
Show a good sense of humor
When expressing an opinion use words like "might" and "could"
Apologize
Don't
Talk about personal life
Royal family and Northern Irish Conflict should not be ridiculed
What does this picture make you think of?
NEED FOR INTERCULTURAL AWARENESS IN BUSINESS

Cultural diversity is perceived quite often around the world with the change in geography, climate, countries, states, religion, language, race and gender.

For a business to develop, in terms of communication, travel and transportation, the cultural diversity must be respected and business people have to be well-aware of it.

"When in Rome, do as the Romans do."

USA
There is no better arena for observing a culture in action than business. Cultures tend to reveal themselves in situations where much is as stake, because it is here that their resources are most needed. E.g.: economic survival.

Business practices are shaped by deeply-held
cultural attitudes
toward
work, power, trust, wealth—and communication
.
Communication is fundamental in business, because business is a
collaborative activity
.
COOPERATION is SUCCESS!
LANGUAGE - IMPORTANT?
The language of business conversation
is very important.

Cross-cultural business normally takes place in a trade language, regardless of which cultural norms otherwise govern the transaction.

English
is currently the leading trade language in most of the world.

HOWEVER, even when everyone seems conversant in a common language, it may be good to use interpreters, because some of the parties may be embarrassed to say they do not understand.

Example:
Power distance index
shows very
high scores for Latin and Asian countries, African areas and the Arab world
.
On the other hand
Anglo and Germanic countries have a lower power distance


LET'S TAKE A LOOK AT A SHORT VIDEO ABOUT CULTURAL DIFFERENCES:
MEET
- Prior appointments are necessary
- A handshake is the customary greeting for both men and women

- The standard space between you and your conversation partner should be about 0,5m.
Most U.S. executives will be uncomfortable standing at a closer distance

- Direct eye contact conveys that you are sincere, although it should not be too intense
Communicate
Almost all business is conducted in English in the United States.

Compliments are exchanged frequently and are popular “conversation starters.”
Generally, Americans like to laugh and enjoy being with people who have a sense of humor. Jokes are usually welcome

Sports are very popular in the U.S., especially baseball, football [not to be confused with soccer], and basketball. Golf is another popular sport, so be prepared to play golf and talk business at the same time.

Your business card will not be refused, but you may not always receive one in return. The recipient of your card will probably place it into a wallet, and in the back pocket of his pants.
Don't
discuss religion, politics or other controversial subjects
ask women if they are married
tell ethnic or religious jokes
Do
talk about person's job/work-related matters
talk about sports, movies, books, hobbies...
Negotiate
the concept "time is money" is taken seriously in U.S. business culture. Businesspeople are used to making up their minds quickly and decisively

Americans tend to dislike periods of silence during negotiations and in conversations, in general, so they talk a lot

consistency is common among American businesspeople: when they agree to a deal, they rarely change their minds
What about Croatia?
What does your "Hamburger" look like?
?
Let's have a quick OVERVIEW
of the BUSINESS CULTURE
in different COUNTRIES:

OVER TO YOU...
NOW THAT WE KNOW A LITTLE MORE ABOUT THE INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS CULTURE,
let us have a look at some language exercises to
broaden your vocabulary and practice reading skills...
... and last BUT not the least:
A SHORT QUIZ ON TODAY'S TOPIC:
ANSWERS:
Further resources for students:
EVERYTHING ABOUT CROSS-CULTURAL BUSINESS ETIQUETTE
http://www.executiveplanet.com/index.php?title=Main_Page

http://www.scribd.com/doc/109125043/Jeanette-S-Martin-Lilian-H-Chaney-Global-Business-Etiquette-A-Guide-to-International-Communication-and-Customs

QUIZ: http://ridingthewavesofculture.com/culture-quiz/




Katja Krope, BA
Business English Lecturer

Visoka šola za upravljanje in poslovanje Novo mesto
School of Business and Management Novo mesto

katja.krope@guest.arnes.si
(find out more:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hofstede%27s_cultural_dimensions_theory#Differences_between_cultures_on_the_values_dimensions)
in the company premises...
so, do NOT refuse the sauna invitation!
Full transcript