Germany intercultural communication training

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Germany intercultural communication training

  1. 1. Doing businesswith...GermanyIntercultural Training SeriesUnit 1Presented by: Charles Rei
  2. 2. purposeThe purpose of this training is to gain a better understanding ofGerman work culture. This presentation provides an overview ofthemes and issues in German culture, communication styles, andetiqutte to help improve cooperation and collaboration withGerman colleagues. (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permittedAs with all cultural training, the issues presented do notrepresent all individuals. Personality types will differ in allsocieties. Instead, the training serves as a general guide. 2
  3. 3. agenda• Facts and myths about German culture• Public vs. private spheres• Communication styles• Business etiquette basics (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted • Do • Don‘t • Be careful• Resources and references 3
  4. 4. CULTURE What we think we knowFACTS AND MYTHS ABOUT GERMAN (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & 4 non-commercial use permitted
  5. 5. Assumption 1 – beer andbratwurst• Significant regional differences • Culture • Dialect (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted • Industry / economy• Reunification• Bavaria• The Ruhr 5 Source: http://library.thinkquest.org
  6. 6. Assumption 2 – punctuality• What on time means in German• Meetings and appointments (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted• Deadlines • Quality / completeness vs. punctuality 6
  7. 7. Assumption 3 – order anddiscipline• Rules based society • The spirit and the letter • Collective enjoyment (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted of society‘s benefits • Changing attitudes• The role of history• Humor • Satire and sarcasm 7 Source: http://www.buffalorising.com
  8. 8. Assumption 4 – a nation ofengineers• Made in Germany• The value of quality• Education • Identifying potential (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted • Developing specialists• Critical and creative thinking Source: http://www.porsche.com 8
  9. 9. What to talk about and what to avoidPUBLIC AND PRIVATE SPHERES (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & 9 non-commercial use permitted
  10. 10. public• Colleagues• Aquaintences• Social groups • Clubs (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted • Social mobility Source: http://www.businessinsider.com 10
  11. 11. private• Family• Friends • Exclusive group• Goals (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted• Individual privacy • Assessments• Mutual respect Source: http://maps.google.com 11
  12. 12. interests Good topics... Not so good topics...• Personal hobbies • Politics • Often taken to a • Globalization professional level • Rumors and gossip (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted• Nature and the environment • Wellness • Balance• Sports 12
  13. 13. What Germans say and hearCOMMUNICATION STYLES (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & 13 non-commercial use permitted
  14. 14. just the facts, please• Drawing conclusions• Detailed understanding of the situation (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted• Analysis vs. hunches• Information overload 14
  15. 15. direct, not impolite• What you see is what you get• The power of truth• Customer service (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted• Complaining Source: http://mixedmedia.pro 15
  16. 16. professional disagreement• What no really means• Person vs. opinion• In-depth discussions (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted• Silence is not agreement 16
  17. 17. reaching a decision• Risk• Decision-makers• Clarity • Detailed planning (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted • Following the plan• Consensus Source: http://www.hermann.k12.mo.us 17
  18. 18. Making the right impressionBUSINESS ETIQUETTE BASICS (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & 18 non-commercial use permitted
  19. 19. do• Arrive on time, well-prepared• Follow the honor system• Greet everyone with a firm handshake and eye contact• Engage in small talk before getting down to business (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted• Support opinions with facts• Participate in professional discussions• Accept invitations 19
  20. 20. don‘t• Treat men and women differently• Get comfortable• Ask colleagues to mix business and personal lives• Be offended by direct comments / questions (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted• Make tentative promises• Act overly friendly out of politeness• Expect to shake things up 20
  21. 21. be careful• Talking about history / politics• Commenting on cultural differences• Using humor• Asking personal questions (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted 21
  22. 22. (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permittedFor more about German business travel and cultureRESOURCES AND REFERENCES 22
  23. 23. resources and references For more information References• The Economist “Doing • Jandt, Fred E. (2010). An business in Berlin” podcast Introduction to Intercultural http://www.economist.com/b Communication. Thousand logs/gulliver/2011/02/doing_ Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, (cc) Charles Rei 2012, attribution & non-commercial use permitted business_berlin Inc.• Guide to handling specific • Dr. Sabrina Mallon-Gerland business situations at Intercultural Communication Executive Planet Trainer http://www.executiveplanet.c Constance, Germany om/index.php?title=Germany http://cltmallongerland.word• BBC Country Overview press.com/ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/e • Contact me for more urope/country_profiles/1047 information at 864.stm charles_rei@yahoo.com 23

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