Is negotiating always legal? Is bribery always illegal?
Today we live in a much smaller world than our parents and subsequently there parents. The rapid growth of Globalization has meant that the ease in which we exchange currency, people and resources has increased. The process of Globalization has seemingly made the world a smaller place and has intensified competition for business.
According to Coertze (1973) there are as many cultures as there are people, and with the rapidly increasing rate of globalisation many of these organisations are operating in environments very dissimilar to their own. The globalized nature of competition that organisations have to deal with today place a high emphasis on an organisations ability to manage cultural differences with respect to its employees and business operations.
Globalisation forced organisations to search further than they may have in the past in order to seek greener pastures. Due to Globalization these organisations are fortunate to operate in technological age that allows them to do so. Therefore it is becoming increasingly important and almost a necessity for multinational organisations to be successful to network and foster professional relationships with organisations and people from other cultures.
The ability to understand diversity and communicate through boarders presents a hurdle for many organisations. Such importance places cultural understanding at the centre of all foreign business practices having specific and vital implications on the process of negotiation.
Negotiation is defined as the process whereby two or more parties engage in communications, the aim of which is agreement on terms affecting an exchange or distribution of benefits, burdens, roles or responsibilities (Cramton and Dees, 1993).
The ability to negotiate with different should be navigated with caution and understanding, a connection of common beliefs, norms, benefits and responsibilities needs to be understood for successful alliances to be fostered. This paper will argue that the ability to discern between ethical and unethical business practices specifically those relating to negotiations have been reduced by the process of globalization.
This paper will demonstrate the importance in understanding cultural diversity with the examples of China, the U.S.A, Nigeria, and other countries that show how difficult Negotiating among diverse cultures can be extremely difficult and the implications in misunderstanding expression of culture.
In China alone there are 3 separate methods of thinking. These 3 methods of thinking can influence an individual and the way the conduct business. These separate methods of thinking are Confucianism, Maoism and the Market ethic view introduced in the reform period. Meaning that even in one country many different views on business are at play. A widely accepted practice in China is known as Guanxi – the literal translation of Guanxi means to connect or friendship. For western professionals the act of Guanxi is the process of gift giving. (Steidlmeir).
The Chinese culture is a collectivist culture this may have to do with the fact that at one stage China was a communist country or it maybe just a natural way of thhnking on China. To be a collectivist means to put the in-group first the in group may be family, friends or an organisation an it is is placed above the individual and the individuals needs.
It is common for Chinese professionals to treat work colleagues as if they were friends or family a practice that does not occur in America. Americans believe that business is business and friendship is friendship and that one should not interfere with the other. The Chinese tradition Guanxi or gift giving is a gesture of thanks and a way to build rapport a way to foster friendships and symbolizes a meaningful connection within the group. A key ritual in Guanxi is the reciprocation; it is customary to continue