Cross cultural negotiations

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  • Publié le : 27 septembre 2010
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1. Introduction
The concept of culture is something really difficult to be well-defined. There is an endless number of definitions and the complexity involved is something important. Trying to reach a traditional definition, culture would be a “knowledge acquired by transmission between individuals indifferent social groups (Camilleri, 1985). It is definitely something really soft.
The core elements of a culture a pretty much the following ones:
* Something learned not innate
* All that is built by human beings,
* All that allows them to adapt
* A collective reality, shared with others
* Can be observed through beliefs, collective representations, values, norms, and rules…
*Composed of subcultures,
* A concept in perpetual evolution.
However, when a businessman of a country goes to negotiate with someone coming from a different place and background, there we have the concept of Intercultural Management. The goal here will be to reach shared solutions to universal problems of external adaptation and internal integration. It is important to stress that this issomething that might be tricky, but is definitely an incredible experience. Therefore, when negotiating in this context, the preparation step is essential.
This work will explore this aspect of “cross-cultural” negotiation, taking the example of an important country in the international scenario, with a rich culture and values: the Netherlands. The goal is to go through all the important stepsin the negotiation process with Dutch people in order to come up with the best information in order to succeed with them.

2. The Netherlands

3.1. General Information
Constitutional Monarchy of 16 million inhabitants, the Netherlands belongs to the European Union since the Treaty of Rome of 1957. A major player in European politics the Netherlands is a founding member of the EU,NATO and OECD. The Netherlands are a country built around three core cities: Amsterdam (the historic capital), Rotterdam (economic capital) and La Hague (European Cities). Instead of the English is a very common language in the country, the official language is the Dutch. There is no strong national culture because the country is historically and culturally divided between north and south. Thefounding values of the Dutch society are openness, tolerance of differences and receptiveness for foreign influences.

3.2. Fact File (Reference: Communicaid Group 2009)

* Official name – Kingdom of the Netherlands
* Population – 16,570,613
* Official Language – Dutch
* Currency – Euro (EUR)
* Capital city – Amsterdam (seat of government in the Hague)
* GDP –purchasing power parity $529.1 billion
* GDP Per Capita – purchasing power parity $32,100

3.3. Key Concepts and Values of the Dutch Culture
We can underline four key concepts of the Dutch culture:
* Egalitarianism: Dutch people enjoy the group and are altruistic people. Like American people, they want to believe in meritocracy. They will more easily respect someone who has worked hardall along his life than someone who has just a good social status.
* Individuality: the group cannot impose something to somebody. Everybody is free to do what he wants if it doesn’t threat the others. There is strong tolerance for individual difference.
* Consensus: this characteristic is strongly linked to the precedents. In fact, Dutch people want to let everyone express their views.* Direct communication: Dutch people are franc and direct, they enjoy scientific approach and they always target efficiency and clarity.

3.4. Business in the Netherlands – General Aspects:
There are precised working practices in the Netherlands. Dutch people use to work from 8.30 am to 5.30 pm. Punctuality is very important because Dutch people want to optimize their time. They use...