British and German business culture

British and German business culture Author : Dennis Henners
Publisher : GRIN Verlag
Pub Date : 2007-04-25
Page : 20
Language : en
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Nowadays conquerors are big companies, hedge funds, the so-called “Global-Players”, etc. Mergers between companies from different countries have become very common. One of the most recent and most discussed is DaimlerChrysler. Not only globally, but also on a European level, we have experienced the urge of companies to expand their business operations into different parts of the EU with the result of settling on the targeted ground where they try to expand their market share. For this reason companies encounter more and more cultural diversity within their own borders. Therefore an effective cross-cultural-management becomes essential in order to work efficiently and build a strong union with the “foreign” branches. Throughout numerous vacations abroad, I have experienced cultural differences between nationalities. Having stayed in the U.S.A. with a host family I have started to investigate these diversities where they have their roots and how to deal with them effectively. Having worked on an internship program for a German company in the U.K. I have experienced what the specific problems were when the two national cultures clashed. Even having a “corporate culture” could not prevent the faut pas being made for example during meetings. These faux pas were triggered by cultural diversity. The complexity of this topic is immediately clear, if only from the number of definitions for the word „culture“, and from the number of theories trying to explain the problem. I have chosen to lay my focus on the work of three major theorists on the topic that best fit my experiences. In this paper I will therefore introduce the theorist’s works and their view of culture to the reader and then apply the results to several situations one will encounter while doing business in either one of the countries. Already several theorists have explored cross-cultural issues affecting the business environment. One theorist will always be outlined when talking about cross-culture: Geert Hofstede, but also will I briefly describe the work of Fons Trompenaars and Hampden-Turner.

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