Presentation on theme: "Action – Doing vs Being S.East Asia Middle East Latin America Africa E. Asia E. Europe Israel E. Asia USA Canada."— Presentation transcript:
Action – Doing vs Being S.East Asia Middle East Latin America Africa E. Asia E. Europe Israel E. Asia USA Canada
Action/Being In general, Africa is more being than doing oriented Work gets done only after trusting relationships have been built Urbanization is lessening this only slightly Work is not the central component of life, leisure and family are Aggressive focus on the task at hand may seem like a demonstration of superiority Because friendship is pleasant, we partake of our friend's entertainment; not because we have not enough to eat in our own house.
Some guidelines … Spend time developing relationships. Be sincere Don’t appear too task oriented – be sure never to seem condescending Expect to conduct serious business on a one-on-one basis only Always keep your promises
Communication – Low context vs High Context Israel Germany Denmark Australia USA UK Canada Latin Europe Latin America Asia Africa
Communication Often high-context, indirect and unexpressive Politeness and protocol are highly valued and hospitality is generous Forms of address are often related to status and seniority
Guidelines Communicate formally and respectfully Soften your directness and listen for indirect meanings Be open to receiving and giving hospitality Always use titles Be assertive but avoid arrogance Avoid political discussions Show genuine interest in African culture and don’t compare Africa with your own culture
The Oral Tradition Very old tradition of spoken communication “In Africa, when an old man dies, it is as if a whole library has been burnt” In the modern business this can cause many problems: Imprecision of management and administration objectives Lack of readiness to read relevant documents Difficulties in writing Difficulties in filing systems