The Mindful International Manager: How to Work Effectively Across Cultures

The Mindful International Manager: How to Work Effectively Across Cultures

by Jeremy Comfort, Peter Franklin

Paperback(Reprint)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780749461973
Publisher: Kogan Page, Ltd.
Publication date: 01/28/2011
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 176
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Jeremy Comfort founded York Associates, UK, nearly thirty years ago. He has trained and coached hundreds of teams and individuals about the challenges of working internationally.

Peter Franklin is a professor of intercultural business and management communication at HTWG Konstanz University of Applied Sciences in Germany. He also teaches at MBA programs in Germany, Britain and Switzerland.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements viii

Foreword ix

Introduction 1

1 Home and away 7

Core competences 7

Surfacing expectations 10

Understanding your own cultures 11

Profiling your own cultures 12

Best practice: focused on goals, flexible on approaches 16

2 Difference and common ground 19

Competing values? 19

Power in national and organizational cultures 21

Time in national and organizational cultures 22

Communication in national and organizational cultures 24

Individualism and group orientation in national and organizational cultures 26

Best practice: building a common culture 30

3 Individuals and groups 33

Stereotypes 33

Personality and behaviour - at work and at home 37

Personality 38

Connecting personality and culture 40

Best practice: get to know your team 42

Best practice: the role of leadership 44

Case study 1 Laurence Berger 46

4 Direction 49

The relationship between setting direction and uncertainty 49

Direction and vision 51

Communicating direction: big picture or detail? Push or pull? 52

Long- and short-term orientation 54

Past, present and future 56

Best practice: top-down or bottom-up or something else? 58

Case study 2 Phil Carey 61

5 Organization and change 63

Attitudes towards change 63

Changing organizational structure 66

Working in international projects 67

Working without a leader 69

Best practice: the four Ps 70

Case study 3 Pierre Menton 72

6 Roles 75

Management roles and styles 75

International roles and local roles 77

The role of the expert and the role of the manager 78

The role of the influencer 80

The role of the connecter 83

Best practice: defining roles 84

Case study 4 Sun Mei Ling 86

7 Communication 89

Constructing meaning 89

Tuning into body language 90

Taking turns at speaking 92

Using language to create understanding 93

Listening actively to create understanding 96

Communicating, socializing and building relationships 96

Best practice: speaking transparently and listening effectively 99

Case study 5 Talal Hamieh 101

8 Feedback 103

Formal and informal feedback 103

Culture and feedback 104

Face and feedback 106

Personality and feedback 106

Types of feedback 107

Best practice: balancing transparency and harmony 109

9 Conflict 113

Personal attitudes towards conflict 113

Culturally influenced attitudes towards conflict 116

Preventing conflict through effective communication 119

Preventing conflict through understanding the context 121

Resolving conflicts: some options 121

Best practice: yourself, the others and trust 124

10 Cooperation 127

The basis for cooperation 127

Regulating cooperation 129

Building a common culture to leverage diversity 131

Best practice: cooperating in virtual teams 134

Best practice: cooperating in international teams 136

Case study answers 139

Profiles of the managers quoted 143

Glossary 147

References 155

Index 159

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

…busy managers who are not going to sit still for too much theory and pages of academese are the real winners here…It is very practical and includes five detailed case studies that bring the concepts to life in situations almost any manager can relate to. The Mindful International Manager is a lucid, brief, extremely accessible book that presents more useful, practical insights in its 130-plus pages than many books two and three times its length." -Craig Storti, author of The Art of Crossing Cultures

"The Mindful Intercultural Manger is the perfect handbook for individuals that interact with and manage diverse workforces… provides an easy to understand breakdown of cultural variation in the workplace and provides best practices built soundly on intercultural theories… Comfort and Franklin have created a useful management guide which individuals may use to improve productivity within the work environment by focusing on creating a universal work culture built on the strengths and competencies of employees."  -SIETAR Baltimore

"...weaves theory and practice together - with the emphasis on the latter - so that both experienced and inexperienced managers can be guided through the many challenges of working internationally." 
-Gabriele Eilert-Ebke, Corporate Learning, Henkel AG & Co.Kgaa, Dusseldorf 

"Consultant Jeremy Comfort and professor Peter Franklin provide basic pointers on how to become "mindful" of aspects of culture that, if ignored, could derail your business… getAbstract recommends its concise and informative tips to frequent business travelers, expatriate employees, managers leading culturally diverse teams and anyone looking to get a better grip on doing business globally."
-getAbstract.com

"...a very accessible and practical guide that supports managers in their complex international work...remarkable chapters on feedback and conflict." -Vincent Merk, former president, Society for Intercultural Education,Training and Research, Europe

"...a first-rate book...really useful, even for managers with a lot of international experience." -Ludger Opgenhoff, former Marketing Director Europe, DHL Express and Professor of International Management, Gelsenkirchen University of Applied Sciences, Germany

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Mindful International Manager: How to Work Effectively Across Cultures 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
RolfDobelli More than 1 year ago
Globalization and technology are making a small world even smaller. Yet cultural differences still exist. International managers have to recognize those distinctions and harness them to get the most out of their global employees. Consultant Jeremy Comfort and professor Peter Franklin provide basic pointers on how to become "mindful" of aspects of culture that, if ignored, could derail your business. The authors practice what they preach: Their plainly written guide is free of jargon and accessible to non-native English speakers, and it provides an essential overview of a complex, multifaceted subject. Seasoned international executives may find the book's contents to be old news. Nonetheless, getAbstract recommends its concise and informative tips to frequent business travelers, expatriate employees, managers leading culturally diverse teams and anyone looking to get a better grip on doing business globally.