Business: it's a Multicultural Affair

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Seeing as I'm in Carlson, I decided it would be worthwhile to look at problem solving in cross cultural business practices. I took a Management class last semester which lightly discussed the difference in businesses across cultures, so I previously had some knowledge of this. I definitely agree that Western managers tend to rush to solutions before defining the problem, and I think this can have big impacts when dealing business across different cultures. What I find the most interesting is that often times the biggest chunk of business is not actually business at all. Instead of going through charts, graphs, and negotiations, much of a business's time goes towards recognizing the cultural business practices of where they are. A typical Western manager trying to do business is a different culture will often want to move faster than the people they are doing business with because they are much more focused on quick solutions than identifying the problem.
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I think it's obvious that we should always be aware of customs across different cultures, and in regards to doing cross cultural business practices it's the same. For me personally this could be extremely useful in my career because I will be dealing with technology in businesses. Often times technology departments will do business with people from around the world so it's important for me to be considerate of different customs. Overall I think it's important to be aware of cultural differences, regardless if it's for business or not.

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How do other cultures approach problems? Do they use different problem solving techniques? What kinds of things could Western business people do to help reduce problems? Links to more information on this topic would be helpful.

This is an interesting point you have brought up. I am also in Carlson and took a management class last semester that placed emphasis on thoroughly understanding the culture you intend on doing business with. It was interesting to see all the similarities and differences across cultures. For example, the United States tend to be more individualistic and like to make quick choices whereas in other countries (such as China) do the exact opposite. What country do you think would be the hardest to business in?

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This page contains a single entry by holt0703 published on March 25, 2012 1:54 PM.

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