Skip to main content

Metis Talent Management brand new website goes live

Last fortnight was a joy, as we came to the launch of Metis Talent Management's website. Metis is a Singapore based organisation that advises clients on Talent Management with a primary focus on Talent Development and Organisation Design. Best wishes to team Metis!

The other great thing is how folks at Metis approached this by going in for a full overhaul, including getting a new logo and brand colours. Do leave your comments on what you feel about the website and the logo!!

Cultural Issues in Strategic Alliances & Negotiations

One of the greatest cross cultural successes in the business world is the Renault Nissan Alliance. If one reads the differences between the two cultures, it appears too good to be true. In fact, almost unreal.With Mitsubishi joining the alliance recently, there is another spice in the curry!

Despite the obvious contrasts in the French and the Japanese cultures, how do such alliances succeed? The large question is, what are the dynamics of cross cultural alliances, howsoever big or small they are? How does one negotiate in a culture that is markedly different? The Hofstede dimensions provide us a clue!


Power distance often tells us the how the communication channels may work. If Power Distance in that culture is high, there is no point in seeking a meeting with the senior most executive. It is unlikely that an appointment will be granted easily! Instead, it is advisable to work with junior executives initially, who will report everything in detail to the boss!!

If negotiating as a team, one must ascertain the Individualism vs Collectivism score of that culture. This helps in determining whether the decision will be taken by the senior most person(middle east, maybe), or the entire team(as in Japan). One can plan the discussions accordingly.

Uncertainty Avoidance scores tell us whether the other party is likely to keep things vague, or prefer to have clear stands. If the native culture is low on uncertainty avoidance(India!), it is okay to expect some vagueness and open endedness.

Long Term vs Short Term Orientation: When meeting a client in an alien culture for business negotiations, it is important to ascertain his country and organisational orientation on this score and plan accordingly. For example, if the alien culture is very short term oriented, a 5 or 10 year long plan may be of little interest to the client.

Masculinity vs Femininity: In a business negotiation context, this parameter is extremely significant. It helps plan gifts, for example. In high masculine environment, the gifts need to be ego touching. Example, one can plan a better gift for the boss than the rest of the team. However, in high feminine environment, same gifts may work well, despite the hierarchy.


Contextuality

By knowing this aspect one can ascertain some aspects of communication and behaviour. In High Context cultures, one can expect a lot between the lines, and therefore body language has to be observed very closely. In low context culture, one can expect direct communication.

Keeping these factors as part of the negotiation or alliance plan can remove unwanted anxieties, and make the discussions productive.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

USABILITY, WHAT THE HECK?

14 Nov was billed as World Usability Day.(In India, it has traditionally been celebrated as Children's Day). So what exactly is the big noise about Usability.

Ever come across a gadget you had to struggle to make use of? Or, a door lock that you had to struggle to open because the lock system was so complex? Or, a TV remote that refused to help? Or, the car fob with so many buttons that you do not know all the functions. Well, in the words of World Usability Day website it is all about 'making life easy'. Succintly capturing the dilemna, it says:

"Why doesn't this work right? What am I supposed to do with this now?"

Usability, undoubtably, is something that affects us in our daily lives. It is about user experience in using a product, rather, the ease of it. Imagine,your cousin gifted you a new mobile but you found navigation so clumsy that you had to put it back in the box and started using the old one.

As products get more complex and manufacturers come under p…

THE WORLD IS NOT FLAT - THE BOOK IS!

Just finished reading 'The World is Flat' by Thomas Friedman. The subtitle suggests it is the 'A brief History of the Globalized World in the 21st Century'.

Once again an attempt at creating a stereotype. This book is targetted at western audiences, who have probably read about outsourcing etc through the media, but have not had the chance to read it in the form of a story, something the three times Pulitzer awardee is very good at.

Mr. Friedman conjures up images of Indian IT companies as replacing the jobs in the US, but he forgets some parts of the story, viz, most of the Indian Tier 1 IT services providers have strong sales arms in the US, which have many an American employed.Outsourcing is not new at all. A famous acedemician recently commented that Americans outsourced their undergraduate education to India decades ago. That remark, made half in jest, alluded to the large number of Indian students who went to(and still go) US to after earning their basic engineeri…

Abdul Kalam Tomorrow

President is set to retire in a week's time. Rajdeep Sardesai post on the president at one of his last official engagements is all about the magnetism of this simple looking man. There are talks about him becoming involved with various academic initiatives. Anna University in Chennai is preparing for his return to the campus, and Nitish Kumar is planning to offer him the Visitor position of the revived Nalanda University. Whatever finally happens, it is clear that Kalam is not fading away. That's reassuring. For me, this is double happiness, since I trace my roots to Nalanda area and live in Chennai. BTW, his future website is already being readied and will go live on 25 July 2007. The site seems to be hosted by NIC. Even Google seems to be saluting him, since, the site has no content yet, but seems to be enjoying PR of 4. Interestingly, there is less talk of India's incoming president in blogosphere, more or the outgoing one.So much for hamara President.

Relat…