chapter
8 Pages

Introduction

ByJEAN-FRANÇOIS CHANLAT, EDUARDO DAVEL AND JEAN-PIERRE DUPUIS

The Chinese always use two hands to present business cards. So when an arriving American consultant started a meeting by offering his own one-handed – as if dealing playing cards – none of his Chinese interlocutors would accept one. In such a transaction, such observed behaviors might lead the Chinese to think of Americans as uncivilized – barbarians – even though the Americans are doing everything ‘right’ according to their own social and cultural references. Incidents like these, trivial as they might seem, go to the heart of what this volume proposes to explore. Managers in international enterprises confront cultural differences constantly, in ways that affect cooperation, collaboration, effectiveness and effi ciency.