2International Projects Types of ProjectsDomesticOverseasForeignGlobalIssues in Managing International ProjectsEnvironmental factors affecting projectsGlobal expansion considerationsChallenges of working in foreign culturesSelection and training of overseas managers
3International Assignments PositivesIncreased incomeIncreased responsibilitiesCareer opportunitiesForeign travelNew lifetime friendsNegativesAbsence from home and friends, and familyPersonal security risksMissed career opportunitiesDifficulties with foreign language, culture, and laws
4Environmental Factors Affecting International Projects FIGURE 15.1
5Environmental Factors Legal/PoliticalPolitical stabilityNational and local laws and regulationsGovernment, state and local bureaucraciesGovernment interference or supportGovernment corruptionSecurityInternational terrorismNational and local securityLocal crime and kidnappingRisk management
6Environmental Factors (cont’d) GeographyClimate and seasonal differencesNatural obstaclesEconomicGross domestic product (GDP)Protectionist strategies and policiesBalance of paymentsCurrency convertibility and exchange ratesInflation ratesLocal labor force: supply, educational and skill levels
7Environmental Factors (cont’d) InfrastructureTelecommunication networksTransportation systemsPower distribution gridsUnique local technologiesEducational systemsCultureCustoms and social standardsValues and philosophiesLanguageMulticultural environments
8Assessment Matrix Project Site Selection FIGURE 15.2
9Assessment Matrix Project Site Selection FIGURE 15.3
10Cross-Cultural Considerations: A Closer Look CultureA system of shared norms, beliefs, values, and customs that bind people together, creating shared meaning and a unique identityCultural Differences.Geographic regionsEthnic or religious groupsLanguageEconomic
11Cross-Cultural Considerations… (cont’d) Ethnocentric PerspectiveThe tendency believe that one’s cultural values and ways of doing things are superior to all othersWanting to conduct business only on your terms and stereotyping other countries as lazy, corrupt, or inefficient.Ignoring the “people factor” in other cultures by putting work ahead of building relationships.AdjustmentsRelativity of time and punctualityCulture-related ethical differencesPersonal and professional relationshipsAttitudes toward work and life
12Cross-Cultural Orientations Relation to NatureHow people relate to the natural world around them and to the supernatural.Time OrientationThe culture focus on the past, present, or future.Activity OrientationHow to live: “being” or living in the moment, doing, or controlling.Basic Nature of PeopleWhether people viewed as good, evil, or some mix of these two.Relationships Among PeopleThe degree of responsibility one has for others.Source: F. Kluckhohn and F. L. Strodtbeck, Variations in Value Orientations (Evanston, IL: Row, Peterson, 1961).
13Kluckhohn-Strodtbeck’s Cross-Cultural Framework Note: The line indicates where the United States tends to fall along these issues.FIGURE 15.4Source: F. Kluckhohn and F. L. Strodtbeck, Variations in Value Orientations (Evanston, IL: Row, Peterson, 1961).
14Hofstede Cultural Dimensions Framework Individualism versus collectivismIdentifies whether a culture holds individuals or the group responsible for each member’s welfare.Power distanceDescribes degree to which a culture accepts status and power differences among its members.Uncertainty avoidanceIdentifies a culture’s willingness to accept uncertainty and ambiguity about the future.Masculinity-femininityDescribes the degree to which the culture emphasizes competitive and achievement-oriented behavior or displays concerns for relationships.
15Sample Country Clusters on Hofstede’s Dimensions of Individualism-Collectivism and Power Distance FIGURE 15.5
16Cross-Cultural Considerations (cont’d) Working in FranceWorking in the United StatesWorking in ChinaWorking in MexicoWorking in Saudi Arabia
17Working in Different Cultures Relying on Local IntermediariesTranslatorsSocial connectionsExpeditorsCultural advisors and guidesCulture ShockThe natural psychological disorientation that people suffer when they move into a different culture.A breakdown in a person’s selective perception and effective interpretation system induced by foreign stimuli and the inability to function effectively in a strange land.
19Working in Different Cultures (cont’d) Coping with Culture ShockCreate “stability zones” that closely create home.Modify expectations and behaviorRedefine priorities and develop realistic expectationsFocus on most important tasks and relish small accomplishmentsUse project work as a bridge until adjusted to the new environmentEngage in regular physical exercise programs, practice meditation and relaxation exercises, and keep a journal
20Selection and Training for International Projects Selection FactorsWork experience with cultures other than one’s ownPrevious overseas travelGood physical and emotional healthKnowledge of a host nation’s languageRecent immigration background or heritageAbility to adapt and function in the new culture
21Selection and Training for International Projects (cont’d) Areas for Training to Increase Understanding of a Foreign Culture:ReligionDress codesEducation systemHolidays—national and religiousDaily eating patternsFamily lifeBusiness protocolsSocial etiquetteEqual opportunity
22Selection and Training for International Projects (cont’d) Learning Approaches to Cultural FluencyThe “information-giving” approach—the learning of information or skills from a lecture-type orientation.The “affective approach”—the learning of information/skills that raise the affective responses on the part of the trainee and result in cultural insights.The “behavioral/experiential” approach—a variant of the affective approach technique that provides the trainee with realistic simulations or scenarios.