International Business and Cross-cultural Communication
The increase in international business and in foreign investment has created a need for executives with knowledge of foreign languages and skills in cross-cultural communication. Americans, however, have not been well trained in either area and, consequently, have not enjoyed the same level of success in negotiation in an international arena as have their foreign counterparts.
Negotiating is the process of communicating back and forth for the purpose of reaching an agreement. It involves persuasion and compromise, but in order to participate in either one, the negotiators must understand the ways in which people are persuaded and how compromise is reached within the culture of the negotiation.
In many international business negotiations abroad, Americans are perceived as wealthy and impersonal. It often appears to the foreign negotiator that the American represents a large multi-million-dollar corporation that can afford to pay the price without bargaining further. The American negotiator’s role becomes that of an impersonal purveyor of information and cash.
In studies of American negotiators abroad, several traits have been identified that may serve to confirm this stereotypical perception, while undermining the negotiator’s position. Two traits in particular that cause cross-cultural misunderstanding are directness and impatience on the part of the American negotiator. Furthermore, American negotiators often insist on realizing short-term goals. Foreign negotiators, on the other hand, may value the relationship established between negotiators and may be willing to invest time in it for long-term benefits. In order to solidify the relationship, they may opt for indirect interactions without regard for the time involved in getting to know the other negotiator.
Clearly, perceptions and differences in values affect the outcomes of negotiations and the success of negotiators. For Americans to play a more effective role in international business negotiations, they must put forth more effort to improve cross-cultural understanding.
谈判是为了达成协议而反复交流的过程。 它包括说服和妥协。 但是为了去进行说服和妥协，谈判者必须懂得在谈判的文化中怎样说服人和怎样达成妥协。
在国外的国际商务谈判中，美国人被视为富有和不带个人情感。 在外国谈判者看来，似乎美国人代表着一个庞大的拥有数百万资财的大企业，不用进一步地讨价还价就能出得起价钱。 美国谈判者的角色变成了一个没有个人感情的信息及现金的供应者。
对在国外的美国谈判者的研究中，我们找出了损害谈判者能力的几个特点，或许证实这个已成定式的看法。 尤其引起跨文化误解的两个特点是美国谈判者的直截了当和缺乏耐心。 此外，美国谈判者经常坚持实现短期目标，而外国的谈判者会珍视建立谈判者之间的联系并愿意为长期利益投入时间。 为了巩固这种联系，他们会选择非直接的交流而不计较投入用于了解对方的时间。