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Issues in International Marketing

Question:

Discuss about the Issues in International Marketing.

Answer:

Introduction

Business cultures are significant to global business, specifically in the current business environment.Various nations possess their own different attitudes and values, personal communciation, social structure, customs and manners, education and religion concept (Anderson & Kolko, 2010). Each part of the American culture has an influence of the efficiency and success of global businesses that should be paid more attention. Other countries in the rest of the world have placed their hope in this nation.

Research approach

The idea of fit between environment and the industrial structure is among the oldest concepts in management studies. The research in this paper taks a static view and that the reality of the matter is that environments and organizations are ever changing in dynamic interaction. The study of such dynamic interactions necessitates a more detailed case study approach whereby changes are jotted down over a considerable duration. The research found in this paper seeks to contribute to the body of knowledge by describing and analysing the various dynamic relationships between the environment, organizational strategy, and structure in American business culture.

Geert Hofstede Analysis for American Business Culture

The Geert Hosfstede analysis for American bears resemblance to other nations whose heritage is rooted in Europe. Individualism is ranked the highest and is a contrubutory factor in the life of American nationals. The least ranking of Long-Term Orientation is a vivid reflection of the freedom in the culture drawn from long term traditonal involvements, a factor that allows freedom and flexibility to react with immediacy to new opportunties (Hofstede, 1994). In accordance with Hofstede research, there are 7 nations that are known to have individualism (IDV) as the highest dimension, that is, US (90), UK (89), Australia (88), Canada and Netherlands (81), and Italy (75). The IDV ranking for the U.S. is a clear indication that a society that has more individualistic attitutude combined with loose bonds with the rest of other business partners. Its population is more self-reliant; one that depends entirely on itself and its close knit of family members.

The second factor of Hofstede Dimension is Masculinity (MAS) whereby the U.S. is ranked with 62, compared to the world’s mean of 50. This shows that America experiences a higher level of gender differentiation of roles. The males do dominate a substantial part of the American society and power fragmentation. This condition produces a female populace that is more competitive and assertive, whereby women are found shifting and changing toward the male roles. The USA was clustered in the group of nations that had the record of Long Term Orientation (LTO) that was added to it. The U.S. has been ranked low at 20, comapred with the world average LTO of 45. The low LTO indicates that the American society’s belief in meeting its mandate is a reflection of an appropriation for cultural traditions. The next least ranking  Dimension for the USA is Power Distance (PDI) which stands at 40, which differes with 55 of the world Average. This indicates that there is greater equality between societal levels inclusive of families, organizations, and government. This kind of orientation acts as a reinforcement for cooperative interaction across various power levels and further forms a network of stable cultural environemnt. The final Geert Hofstede Dimension for the country of America is Uncertainity Avoidance (ababreviated as UAI). America’s UAI ranks at 46, compared to 64 (which is the current world’s Average). By having a least ranking in the UAI, this is clear indication that the American society is composed of fewer rules and hardly attempts to control all results and outcomes. It further bespeaks of greater tolerance for various beliefs, throughts, and ideas for the country (Hofstede, 1994).

American Mix of Businesses up to the Present

The mixture of businesses going on in America has been developing for over 200 years, since the dawn of 1800. In the recent years, the growth of econonomic globalization coupled with the increase of overseas immigration has accelerated the rate of business growth. The gigantic consumption of American goods and services (both locally and in other countries) bespeaks of the popularity of American business culture and the special adoration which other countries have towards America as an icon of hope. According to Becker, the culture of one nation has the potential to affect the local bussinesses in a serious way (2000). The American diverse range of culture would be analysed in respect to the below factors.

Attitudes and Values

Values refer to the general attitudes and merits to the signficance and meaning of sorrounding objective things (Bianchi & Arnold, 2004). The moment values are confirmed, they will enable people to stay stable. To the society and group, social values are bound to change over a considerable period of time in accordance with the substitution of the environment and personnel. The American values are comprised of the below points.

Individual Freedom

This forms one of the most important elements of american values. Presently, it represents the pursuit of liberation of personality. It is majorly advocated by the American citizenry to bring a distinction between one individual and another, and everyone has the right to do anything he/she wishes in the scopre permitted by the american law (Bianchi & Arnold, 2004).

Self Reliance

Every individual is borne to be free (according to the American’s opinion), meaning that everyone can enjoy the libery and freedom by relying on themselves and not others. It is commonplace observation in American society to find small children earning their pocket money by doing a multitude of small jobs, unhindered.

Equality of Opportunties

Americans believe that everyione is equal before God and the country’s law, and thus should be given equal opportunties in the society. This implies that one should not be denied of equal competition as their economic and social position beliefs, and race pronounce their being in the mainstream society.

Competition

The aspect of competition has the primary foundatiuon and ideal condition from social democratic opinion, economic unrestrained freedom philosophy, and political liberalism. Everywhere, people pursue individualism and success in the business atmosphere and coupled with competition, they  find the efficient way of attaining their goals.

Seeking Wealth

In America, the success of a person is measured by the kind of wealth which he/she owns (Woolliams & Trompenaars, 2003). The best symbol of their economic and social position is displaying beautiful houses, luxurious limosines, and expressive dresses.

Hardworking

In America, working hard is something that is taken seriously. It shows the way by which everyone makes a living, as well as the duty that one should take not only in  America but also across the world. The working attitude and achievements have become the benchmark of judging the wellbeing of an American.

Cultural Analysis of My Country in Comparison with America’s

­According to the writing by Leung, Bhagat, Buchan, Erez & Gibson (2005), manners  and customs refer to the particular pattterns which a person expresses in communciation and these patterns differ from one country to another. The precise understanding of my nation’s cutoms and manners is very significant for global businesses. Customs and manners are known is terms of social manners, taboos, customs, and dinnner manners. Just like the people in my country, Americans too are people who are known to be open-minded, enthusiastic, and love making friendship with strangers (Shenkar, 2001). Though sometimes they act casually in the daily lives, they always remember to pay attention to certain special manners. They are used to polite laanguage such as ‘excuse me’ and ‘please’ while in public. They also cherish time spent with one another (Merish, 2008).

The clothing preference could be described using using various wordings: comfortable, loose, and natural. Nevertheless, they emphasize much on the neatness and the details of the dress, for instance, it is improper to put on sleep coats in public or while attending to visitors (Merish, 2008). Various rules should be obeyed while in public. For example, smoking and making noise ought to be avoided while eating. The act of taking off shoes and clothing in public is considered impolite while in public, as well dicussing sick things. Americans harbor many customs, including enjoying dinner with family during Christmas and celebrating each holiday. They dislike the number “13” and the day of Friday among all days of the week. The act of asking about another person’s incomes and age is highly discouraged. On the contrary, the kind of life Americans live requires more money and is usually founded on riches. This differs with my country, Singapore, which harbours people who are mostly middle income earners and the poor.

Social Structure

Wright (1982) defines social structure as a pattern of members. The social structure
 contains income distribution structure, straturm structure and occupation structure. In America, the composition of service industry  has been recorded to be on the rise, and has emerged to become the  biggest industry while that of agricultre and manufacture have been declining. The stratum could be divided into six categories: underclass, poorer class, laboring class, lower middle class, upper middle class, and the top, there is upper class (Wright, 1982). The populace of middle class occupies close to 50% of the social members whereas the labouring class accounts for 40%. Stratum structure composition is same to that of the income distruction structure. The upper class (who form 2% of society members) own more than 45% of the nation’s wealth, whereas underclass lives with the public welfare (Wright, 1982).

Personal Communication

The opinions and views of American nationals are best expressed via personal communication and their culture as well. In all facets of life,  Americans always ask actively and talk directly, with unmeasurable boldness. They used to acquire simple information via simple and direct words and are not bothered with the beauty of euphemistic nature of such words (Merish, 2008). In case they have any questions regarding a certain topic, they will ask with a lot of inquistiveness until they ensure they have grasped the entire details of such a topic. Body language is appreciated as an element of communication whereby a person’s attitude in business will be reflected by the social expression, posture, and gesture (Truty, 2012).

Religion   

As informed by Woolliams & Trompenaars (2003), religion forms an important part of the American culture. According the research done by Anderson & Kolko (2010), 80% of adults are Christian faithfulns in American by 2010, while the rest occupy 5.5% of other religions. The residual 14.5 % have no belief (atheists). The impact of business cultures to global businesses shoud be studied  indepth wherefore misunderstanding of foreign culture leads to further misunderstanding of other people’s feelings (Anderson & Kolko, 2010). It has been noted that different business cultures influence the level of communciation in international business. For instance, in different cultures, the thinking models and logical ways are expressed in terms of gestures, tone, and face (Shenkar, 2001). Americans normally talk directly to each other and are not fond of speaking in euphemisms. Any time they fail to unnderstand each other’s culture, they consult to know the details of such culture. That bespeaks the inquistive nature of Americans in attempting to learn other people’s culture across the world. The broad mind of wanting to know a variety of details about someone (includinf thier language and culture) puts Americans ahead in busness deals more than any other country. As Becker (2000) puts it, it is only in America where you  find people who are seriously trading but not hindereed by language barreirs.

Business negotiation is usually influenced by business cultures. As primary business activities, Becker (2000) notes that business negotiations are among the major determinants of profit accumulation and success of international business. Business culture also affects negotiation in progress, strategy, style, and location. For instance, American people prefer using long time small talk and always choose formal commercial location for any negotiation. Also to mention, is that harmony and solidarity are highly emphasized in generic connection, in management, and in family relationships.

Business Cultures of Singapore

For my country (Singapore) to continue shining as an icon of business, a variety of business cultures shall to be considered. The most significant cultures to Singapore are personal communication, socia structure, customs and manners. Understanding social structure setups would help us to understand the target market and the individuals  who come to consume the Singaporean products.

Corporate Culture

In a nation that prides much on its own individualism, organizations  are structured and organized with a lot of styles depending on its current leaders, the firm’s history, and the entire structure of the industry. In the U.S., the formation of business relationships are founded between companies and not people. This compels Americans to carry out business where they are assured of the best deal and the best services. It is meaningless to develop an individual relationship as a means of establishing a long and successful business association.

Conclusion & Findings

Various factors can be used to demonstrate business operations and culture in a foreign nation. As a means of realising substantial improvement, there is need for America to imprive the marketing of all its firms, and more importantly to boost its tourism and sector. The government has the economic mandate of ensuring that all the firms embark on increasing reasonable prices as a means of increasing the revenue which this nations has been receiving from various sectors of the economy. Now that the business culture of this country has been analysed in depth in this paper, it is important to realise at this juncture that one of the factors that America enjoys most is its superior unmatched technolical infrastructure. IT infrastructure has formed the backbone of America’s business culture to an extend that nearly every business is conducted using technology. Perhaps, this phenomenon explains why America is a 24-bour economy and always ranks high in its annual GDP as compared to most nations across the globe.

References

Anderson, R & Kolko, J . (2010). Business, culture, and society. Interactions, 17 (3), 5-5. 

Becker, K. (2000). Culture and international business. International Business Press: New York. 

Bianchi, C. C. & Arnold, S. J. (2004). An institutional perspective on retail internationalization success: Home Depot in Chile. The International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research, 14, 149-169.

Fischer, RH. (2012). Business and Culture. Beijing Review, 55 (45), 48.

Hofstede, G. (1994). The business of international business is culture. International Business Review, 3 (1), 1-14

Leung, K, Bhagat, RS, Buchan, NR, Erez, M & Gibson, CB. (2005). Culture and International Business: Recent Advances and Their Implications for Future Research. Journal of International Business Studies, 36 (4), 357-378.

Merish, L. (2008). Barry Shank. A Token of My Affection: Greeting Cards and American Business Culture: A Token of My Affection: Greeting Cards and American Business Culture. (Popular Cultures, Everyday Lives.). The American Historical Review, 113 (1), 183-184. 

Shenkar, O. (2001). Cultural distance revisited: Towards a more rigorous conceptualization and measurement of cultural differences. Journal of international business studies, 519-535.

Truty, D. (2012). International Business Etiquette, Manners & Culture. Choice, 50 (3), 532.

Wright, EO. (1982). The American Class Structure. American Sociological Review, 47 (1),  709.

Woolliams, P & Trompenaars, F . (2003). Business across cultures. Capstone: Oxford.


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