Intercultural Business Strategies News & Views

Cross-Cultural Business Success Tips

Cross-Cultural Strategy in Sales Negotiation

Negotiation

Image by Elizeu Santos-Neto via Flickr

The most important cross-cultural strategy in sales negotiations is the same for your domestic sales negotiations.

  • Preparation

Do not forget to prepare for your sales negotiations beforehand.

Identify Sales Basics

Can you set the parameters: Read more »

Corporate Culture Shock in America – Part 4

"Think globally-act locally", Sofia ...

Image via Wikipedia

In this 4-part series, “Corporate Culture Shock in America,” author Susan Davidson explains the cost of lost productivity incurred by American corporations because of months of isolation, confusion, and frustration experienced by expatriates and foreign nationals who relocate to the United States to live and work.

In this section Davidson focuses on Conquering Corporate Culture Shock.

Click here to read part 1 of this 4 part series

Click here to read part 2 of this 4 part series

Click here to read part 3 of this 4 part series

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By Susan Davidson

Conquering Corporate Culture Shock Read more »

Corporate Culture Shock in America – Part 3

In this 4-part series, “Corporate Culture Shock in America,” author Susan Davidson explains the cost of lost productivity incurred by American corporations because of months of isolation, confusion, and frustration experienced by expatriates and foreign nationals who relocate to the United States to live and work.

In this section Davidson focuses on The American Spirit at Work.

Click here to read part 1 of this 4 part series

Click here to read part 2 of this 4 part series

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By Susan Davidson

The American Spirit at Work Read more »

Corporate Culture Shock in America – Part 2

American cultural icons, apple pie, baseball, ...

Image via Wikipedia

In this 4-part series, “Corporate Culture Shock in America,” author Susan Davidson explains the cost of lost productivity incurred by American corporations because of months of isolation, confusion, and frustration experienced by expatriates and foreign nationals who relocate to the United States to live and work. In this section she discusses:

  • Bottom of the Pyramid
  • American English “Sports-speak”
  • Acronym Soup

Click here to read part 1 of this 4 part series.

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By Susan Davidson

Bottom of the Pyramid Read more »

Corporate Culture Shock in America – Part 1

Looking south from Top of the Rock, New York City

Image via Wikipedia

In this 4-part series, “Corporate Culture Shock in America,” author Susan Davidson explains the cost of lost productivity incurred by American corporations because of months of isolation, confusion, and frustration experienced by expatriates and foreign nationals who relocate to the United States to live and work.

At the end of this section, Davidson discusses the Stages of Adjustment.

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By Susan Davidson

Expatriates and foreign nationals who relocate to the United States to live and work often have mixed perceptions about this young nation. Those feelings are probably best described by the late Irish poet and playwright, Oscar Wilde, who referred to America as “a land of unmatched vitality and vulgarity.”

While most Americans rarely think of their country as “foreign,” the fact is that non-Americans who relocate to the United States to do business and “do lunch” are often surprised to find they experience a severe case of “corporate culture shock.”

According to recently conducted research with dozens of foreign business professionals working in Atlanta and other southeastern U.S. cities, the human resource departments of multinational corporations are woefully inadequate in preparing foreigners for the American workplace. The purpose of the study was to learn about foreign managers’ experiences and attitudes regarding the American business culture. More than half of this diverse group of CEOs, CFOs, vice presidents, directors, managers, engineers, and analysts were European. In total, 26 different countries were represented.

Equally disturbing is the finding that American employees lack cross-cultural awareness and skills that would enable them to draw on the diverse, global talents and business experiences of their non-American counterparts.

Once the physical relocation to the United States is complete, most foreigners and their families say employers provide little, if any, assistance to help them integrate into the American community and business environment. They often struggle up to a year or longer to adapt.

The financial cost of cross-border relocations is steep; often two to four times the transferee’s salary. But the cost of lost productivity because of months of isolation, confusion, and frustration is incalculable. The adaptation period could be reduced by 50 percent with adequate cultural orientation and training, professional coaching, and mentoring. If corporations would simply invest an additional 5 to 10 percent of their relocation cost into cross-cultural orientation, training, and coaching, they would be buying an insurance policy that protects their substantial investment in their expatriate and foreign nationals, realizing a greater productivity return on their investment much sooner.

Stages of Adjustment

Left on their own, foreign professionals frequently go through three stages of acculturation:

  1. Discovery. First, they encounter the barriers and differences that create discomfort and frustration for them and their families.
  2. Search. Second, they begin to look for the people and resources that can help them overcome the cultural barriers.
  3. Adaptation. Finally, they make the necessary adjustments to their communication style, work style, and business practices to build relationships with their American colleagues.

Some foreigners never make it through the adaptation stage and continue to remain isolated from their American colleagues and are less-than-effective in their jobs.

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Susan Davidson is founder and president of Beyond Borders, Inc., an Atlanta-based coaching, training and consulting firm that specializes in improving the business performance of global managers and teams. Susan has worked with Fortune 500 and global corporations for more than 25 years to improve the sales, leadership skills, communications and business effectiveness of leaders, employees and salespeople.

Ms. Davidson has published several articles on her groundbreaking research with foreign business professionals who experience “corporate culture shock” in the U.S. workplace. She is also a featured speaker for human resource, international and training organizations. She can be reached at 770.451.997 or by visiting http://www.beyondborders.us.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Susan_Davidson

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Hurdles to Cross Cultural Business Communication

Author: Neil Payne

International businesses are facing new challenges to their internal communication structures due to major reforms brought about through internationalization, downsizing, mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures.

Lack of investment in cross cultural training and language tuition often leads to deficient internal cohesion. The loss of clients/customers, poor staff retention, lack of competitive edge, internal conflicts/power struggles, poor working relations, misunderstandings, stress, poor productivity and lack of co-operation are all by-products of poor cross cultural communication.

Cross cultural communications consultants work with international companies to minimise the above consequences of poor cross cultural awareness. Through such cooperation, consultancies like Kwintessential have recognised common hurdles to effective cross cultural communication within companies.

Here we outline a few examples of these obstacles to cross cultural co-operation:

Read more »

Improving Cross-Cultural Competence

Cross-cultural competence refers to the capability to communicate proficiently with people from various cultural communities. Even though the actual explanation may differ, the foundation of cross-cultural competence can be a mix of knowledge, understanding, skill, and attitude (Jane Suderman, Understanding Intercultural Communication).

At the company level, cross-cultural competence refers to a set of values, concepts, behaviors, attitudes, and guidelines that make it possible for a workplace system to function effectively cross-culturally (Cross, Bazron, Dennis, & Isaacs, 1989). Generally there are a couple key points to look at in understanding cross-cultural competence: Read more »

Cross Cultural Network/Mobile Communication Issues

In the impressive list of coverage announced by Alain Yee-Loong Chong, Editor in Chief of the International Journal of Network and Mobile Technologies (IJNMT), the very last topic is “Cross cultural network/mobile communication issues.” But just why would this prestigious journal feel that cross cultural communication issues are worthy of coverage?

As Chong explains, “The aim of International Journal of Network and Mobile Technologies (IJNMT) is promote, address and capture innovative and state of the art research and work in the network and mobile technologies field,” encompassing everything from businesses to entertainment.

Let’s look at this a little deeper. Read more »

The Communication Cycle

The Cycle of Communications explained in the video below demonstrates not only how communication takes place, but helps us see why miscommunication happens so often. Now if this much can go wrong between people speaking the same language and living in the same culture, can you see how easily miscommunication takes place across cultures?

“Unusual Overseas Etiquette”


In case you were wondering about how etiquette varies depending on where you are, read on. The following is from the News.com.au story titled “Unusual overseas etiquette.”

IF you kiss in public, forget to flush the toilet or wear a mask you may be surprised to find yourself in hot water in some countries.

Below are some lesser-known acts that may breach the etiquette rules of some of the most popular tourist destinations around the world.

St. Louis, Missouri, US

It is actually illegal for firemen to rescue women who are still in their nightdresses or other various underwear attire. Interestingly, it’s also illegal to sit on the curb of any city street and drink beer from a bucket.

United Arab Emirates

Public nudity is a criminal offence in the UAE and a kiss on the cheek can Read more »