Cross Cultural Management in the 21st century and how it effects Negotiations with an example of HP

January February 2014 Edition
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Within the European Union EU , each value has, correspondingly to the country, a prior status.

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The European market is valued for being highly diversified. Besides a unique cultural background, the EU has a great sense of business. The following chapters demonstrate how different the countries are to one another and that each country has various business techniques. Europeans must further master other languages and in order to do business internationally, they are forced to learn another language to gain competitive advantage.

Mead noted that Anglo countries such as the USA, the United Kingdom UK , Australia or New Zealand were able to depend on internal markets but in times of globalization, the necessity grows to gain competitive advantages by learning more languages besides English Mead, European countries are strong in business and the more one knows about the differences within the EU, the more advantages for a successful negotiation can be expected.

However, perceptions are misleading and once a business contract is negotiated, Germans prove to be accurate in all aspects. At first, Germans pay a high value on punctuality. This is, unlike Americans, not because of the time-is-money-factor, but mainly because of their accuracy and correctness for everything. Punctuality shows respect and reverence. Punctuality 2.

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Privacy 3. Perfection 4. Achievement 5. Punctuality, in business meetings or in general, is for the majority a very important aspect that is highly valued in Germany. If the business partner cannot make it to the arranged time, he or she is expected to call and make up a new time arrangement. The second most valued element for German businessmen is privacy.

Cross-Cultural Management

Privacy, in a German context, is for business people from Arabia, South America, Japan and China sometimes hard to understand. Often, Germans split privacy and business life. Whatever concerns private issues, the German will not share it with his business partner, who on the other hand might consider sharing private affairs as nurturing a business relationship Elashmawi, Hampden-Turner and Trompenaars put the Germans into a G-type for their analysis of cultural differences. The German-type G-type shows clearly that the space of privacy is much larger than the space which is open to the public, as illustrated in Figure 3.

The private sector of a German business partner is a taboo, unless he invites him to his home and offers the guest to call him by his first name. Unless this step has not been taken, Germans divide their business actions and their private ones. The new friend might call the German by his first name in private. However, at his workplace, the German prefers to keep it formal and call his friend by his title and last name Hampden-Turner and Trompenaars, In negotiations, Germans are formal, induce professionalism and like to follow a strict agenda of the well prepared meeting.

Decisions are mainly based on facts, numbers, charts and tables. Underlining high quality, hard facts and professionalism is inevitable. Their perfection in business actions shows credibility and expertise. Knowledge is compartmentalized which means that a marketing specialist does not necessarily know anything about finance. The one-track knowledge enables perfection in one field.

Challenge and achievement is therefore likely. To facilitate good performance, Germans like to gain high control of information which gives them security and an upper hand of their actions. Typically western, Germans prefer to be called by their titles which express their degree of education and social status. Material status symbols represent power, what they have accomplished and what role in society they embody Elashmawi, The UAI is the extent to which members of a culture feel threatened by uncertain situations. To avoid these uncertainties Germany leads a bureaucratic style that makes each questionable action and decision answered by policies and regulations.

Italians put a high priority on relationships with their family members, to their boss or supervisor and alliances.


Being loyal is absolutely necessary for Italians for a healthy business communication. Loyalty is expected not only from business partners but also from family members, friends and staff. Dignity and devotion are often considered as values too which goes along with loyalty Elashmawi, Puzo wrote about unspoken values, a family code and how important alliances are to compete in a criminal underworld that is signified by the power of the Italian mafia Puzo, Power is the key that opens many doors in business but also in society.

The bar chart on the next page demonstrates how important the role of managers is in society which includes the business and private life. When meeting an Italian business partner for a negotiation, Italians put a high emphasis on the first impression. The impression includes introduction, appearance and how charismatic the counterpart seems.

Italians like to express themselves in contemporary fashion. Their sense for fashion presents their position and power. In negotiations Italians maintain eye contact as it indicates respect and interest.

Good business contracts can lead to close friendships. It is not rare that doing business relies on networking. Many business contracts were established due to an alliance. A good deal indicates a good relationship that can be developed and nurtured in future Elashmawi, Switzerland has a great complexity that is shown in languages and on the image of being tough bargainers.

Background information of the Swiss business partner can avoid mortifications or embarrassments not knowing from which part of Switzerland the counterpart comes from. Although Switzerland is diversified in its languages, it shares mostly quite similar values throughout the country. The Swiss business people are known to be firm but polite and courteous in introductions. To recapture, the PDI expresses the degree of the desire of individualism, independence and equality. The higher the PDI, the stronger is the desire for caste systems and the lesser an upward mobility of citizens in society and business occurs.

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The UAI reflects how much risk can be taken and the level of tolerance for uncertainty and ambiguity in society, i. The lower the UAI, the lesser is the concern for uncertainty and ambiguity. It indicates more openness towards a variety of opinions Hofstede, Swiss people do not like ambiguity.

They rather follow a strict agenda, to avoid any mortifications or circumstances that have not been taken into consideration. To avoid any circumstances, whether they have good or bad effects on the negotiation, the Swiss are sometimes considered to be rigid. Rigid formality, however, expresses reliability. When Swiss business people plan, it is almost certain that it will happen as organized.

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This implies that the upward mobility of citizens in business and society is great. Competition is apparent and hierarchical relationships are perceived as convenient arrangements rather than having existential justification. Such analysis leads to the conclusion that businessmen like to see themselves as orderly or systematical and practical, although decisions are preferably made after consulting subordinates Mead, The values that have been marked as extremely high by Swiss businessmen and women are corresponding with the theory and the research work of Mead and Hofstede.

Again, the attitude of the senior manager of Bobst S.

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The values and beliefs are nor typically western or typically eastern. British citizens are as patriotic as Americans but less emotional than Italians. They are open for opinions like the Japanese and as cooperative to subordinates as their Chinese counterparts. The British are proud of their heritage and history. Both have proliferated in modern business. According to Elashmawi, British business people are loyal, traditional, reserved and formal. With their dry sense of humor, British tend to confuse others.

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Some business people can find it daunting, dealing with the British culture, as they seem to be reserved on the one side and humorous on the other side. The British do not like to get things derailed. When negotiating with them, a short, polite introduction is expected.

Business cards are not necessarily exchanged at first but can be provided in the middle of a meeting Elashmawi, The decision making process is slower than in most European countries and most western cultures. The low PDI indicates a strong need for equality and opportunity. The low UAI implies that the British are willing to accept various opinions and do not panic when a situation or circumstance moves into unknown territory.

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They are less concerned about ambiguity and uncertainty compared to people in other European and western countries all together, except for Denmark and Sweden. This also reflects that the UK is a less rule-orientated country and explains why the decision making process takes longer Hofstede, Add to cart. Bibliography Internet References Appendices Abbreviations illustration not visible in this excerpt Figures 1.

Individual Freedom 2. U-Type 3. G-Type 4. Role of Managers in Society 6. Impact of National Culture on Management Practice 7. Therefore, American respondents listed the following values by priority: 1.