Au Contraire!: Figuring Out the French

Au Contraire!: Figuring Out the French

by Gilles Asselin
     
 

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Coca-Cola ran headlong into French culture when a hard-core, bottom-line management style met with boycotts in cafes and supermarkets. Even Mickey Mouse met angry protesters hurling tomatoes and eggs when joining Michael Eisner to launch Euro Disney’s arrival on the Paris stock market.

What makes the French so…well, French? As a culture the French are fiercely

Overview

Coca-Cola ran headlong into French culture when a hard-core, bottom-line management style met with boycotts in cafes and supermarkets. Even Mickey Mouse met angry protesters hurling tomatoes and eggs when joining Michael Eisner to launch Euro Disney’s arrival on the Paris stock market.

What makes the French so…well, French? As a culture the French are fiercely independent yet seductively romantic, deeply conservative yet avant-garde, dispassionately rational yet dramatically emotional?

For anyone involved in interactions with the French, whether in business or government, as a student or trainer or armchair devotee of crossing cultures, Au Contraire! unearths the often invisible cultural forces that govern behavior. Asselin and Mastron draw on their front-line experience as consultants and trainers, on expatriate students and practitioners living and working in both countries, and on their research of hundreds of professionals in business and government to offer the best and most useful analysis and advice on French-American intercultural relations. Going beyond the obvious, this bilingual and bicultural author team explores what lies behind what we see: the assumptions, attitudes, patterns of thought and beliefs that make the French so uniquely French.

In a global world filled with multinational mergers and international partnerships, Au Contraire! provides context and perspective on what happens when Americans and the French come together at work, at home, and in any social setting; it addresses such issues as education and play, friendship and romance, politics and education. In an in-depth case study of how pharmaceutical giant Rhône-Poulenc Rorer overcame challenges to foster cross-cultural teamwork, the authors take a behind-the-scenes look at the dynamics of working and managing across the French and American cultural divide. With a quick and useful guide to social behavior and etiquette and professional guidelines for managers working in the United States and in France, Au Contraire! provides the critical tools to effectively develop creative and appropriate responses to any situation, based on a deep understanding of the unique dynamics of these two cultures.

About the Authors: Gilles Asselin, founder and president of New Jersey-based SoCoCo Intercultural, is a program designer, trainer, and consultant who helps international executives and managers succeed when working across cultures. Ruth Mastron is vice-president of SoCoCo Intercultural and was formerly a liaison for overseas operations for various international

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781877864827
Publisher:
Intercultural Press
Publication date:
12/28/2000
Series:
INTERACT Series
Edition description:
Older Edition
Pages:
308
Product dimensions:
5.67(w) x 8.71(h) x 0.78(d)

Meet the Author

Gilles Asselin, founder and president of New Jersey-based SoCoCo Intercultural, is a program designer, trainer and consultant who helps international executives and managers succeed when working across cultures. Ruth Mastron is vice president of SoCoCo Intercultural and was formerly a liason for overseas operations for various international corporations.

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