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Doing Business Abroad

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The increasing globalization of business has focused interest on the issue of cross-cultural management and the qualities needed in global managers. For many years, US companies relied heavily on expatriate managers when expanding operations abroad.

- Identify at least three specific ways that cultural differences would affect doing business internationally.

- What specific skills would global managers need to address these differences?

- Do you think expatriate or foreign-national managers would be better equipped to deal with these challenges?

Please provide all references used for background information.

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Please see response attached for best formatting, which is also presented below. I also attached two informative and supporting articles.

RESPONSE:

Let's take a closer look through discussion, research and example, which you can draw on for your final copy.

1- Identify at least three specific ways that cultural differences would affect doing business internationally.

a. Cultural Differences in Business Etiquette, Values, and Behaviours (click on the following links for each country, according to Geert Hofstede's Cultural Analysis) SEE ATTACHED REPSONSE FOR LINKS

Africa Argentina Australia Brazil Canada Chile China Colombia Costa Rica Ecuador Egypt El Salvador France Germany Guatemala Hong Kong India Indonesia Italy Japan Mexico New Zealand Panama Russia Saudi Arabia Spain Taiwan United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Venezuela
Source: http://geert-hofstede.international-business-center.com/mcsweeney.shtml

b. Cultural Differences in Communication and Language across workers and customers - lead to misunderstandings and crisis (click on the above links, which most include communication styles for each country)

c. Cultural Differences in Customers Needs and Expectations and the fast speed of these changes. http://geert-hofstede.international-business-center.com/mcsweeney.shtml

2- What specific skills would global managers need to address these differences?

In essence, today managers need new management skills, which are equally effective for managing both local and international business operations. Equipped with these skills one can become like an international soldier capable of fighting international wars.

According to Kottolli (2006), success of managers in a foreign country is never easy. It takes a lot more than technical skills. He argues that the expatriate requires - global soft skills: Ability to understand the cultural difference, ability to work with those difference and take advantage of those difference. It requires a cultural mind shift. For example, even the very small things like where the leader sits at a lunch meeting or where to sit in the car. Some would assume riding shotgun next to the driver in front is where the big boss sits, but in US the seat of power is in the back behind the passenger seat. For example, Kottolli points out that as the Indian economy grows, this problem will worsen because so many managers are sent abroad who are completely unprepared for what they are up against. http://arunkottolli.blogspot.com/2006/07/soft-skills-for-global-managers.html

Therefore, teaching expatriates- managers and top leadership to understand the need for global soft skills will make an impact on the performance & success of the organization.

According to Global Management Skills (n.d.), the following core skills will be required for effective global managers:

1-COMFORT WITH RAPID CHANGE:

Change is not just a fad ...

Solution Summary

This solution identifies at least three specific ways that cultural differences would affect doing business internationally, as well as the specific skills the global managers would need to address these differences. Finally, it discusses if the expatriate or foreign-national managers would be better equipped to deal with these challenges. Supplemented with articles of global skills and self-development. References provided.

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