Page 75- Career Applications
Q1. Resolve a conflict between a Baby Boomer manager and Generation Y employee over productivity and privacy in social networking.
It is important to sit both the employer and the manager and let them understand the importance of the other person’s concern. For the Baby Boomer manager, let him or her understand that we are currently living in a digital age and every aspect of our lives has changed including the business sector. Marketing done through social media is more efficient today resulting to higher sales thus increased productivity. For the Generation Y employee, he/she should know that privacy of the organizational information is mandatory, as this would compromise its success in competing with its rivals. Working hours should not be used for social networking activities, as this would compromise productivity of the organization.
Q2. Influence of technology on business communication habits.
Education, marketing, business, shopping, communication among others are often affected by the technological trends present in the society at that time. For a business to succeed and compete favorably, it has to meet the customer demands, which are often in sync with the technological adjustments. Moreover, for every technological advancement there lies an advantage in communication resulting to businesses adapting to the new developments for faster and more efficient communication. For this reason, it is worth concluding that for as long as we experience technological growth, we will definitely experience change in business communication.
Page 85 -Multiple-choice questions
Q1. Kang, a recent immigrant from South Korea is brilliant programmer who continues to impress everyone with her programming skills but doesn’t do a good job of documenting her code. You suspect she has a problem writing in English, what should be your first step?
Visit her in her office and discuss the situation; ask if she understands the importance of documenting and whether she has encountered any problem doing so. (C)
Q2.Your employees are breaking into ethnically based cliques. You appreciate how the groups are giving the members a sense of belonging but are worried that these channels are alienating non members and fragmenting the flow of information. How do you encourage strong sense of community and teamwork across your department?
Structure work assignments and other activities (such as volunteer projects) in ways that bring people from various cultural groups into regular contact with one another and make them more dependent on one another as well. (C)
Q3. Vasily Pevsner, a Russian immigrant has worked in the department for five years. He works well alone but he resists working with other employees, even in team settings where collaboration is expected. How do you handle this situation?
Talk privately with Pevsner and help him understand the importance of working together as a team. During the conversation, try to uncover why does not participate more in team efforts. (D)
Q4. IBM boats of one of the most educated workforces in the world and your department is no exception. However you have been surprised at the confusion that some of your memos and other written messages have generated lately. You suspect it is your casual and often humorous style and decide to test drive a different writing styles. You drafted four versions of a blog posting explaining a new policy on keeping software projects on schedule as they near completion. Which one would you choose and why?
“As you should all be aware, numerous entities both internal and external to the corporation rely on us for timely project completion. While the inherent nature of software development presents unexpected difficulties during the final stages of a project, it is incumbent upon us to employ every tactic possible to avoid significant completion delays. Hence forth, team members will be excused from nonessential tasks during the final four week of every development project.” (D)
This blog posting is more professional compared to all the other options. Moreover, it clearly explains the reason behind the new changes and how the changes should be made.
Q8. Choose a specific country such as India, Portugal, Bolivia, Thailand or Nigeria. Research the culture and write a brief summary for your class blog on concepts of personal space and rules of social behavior that a US manager would need to know to conduct a business successfully in that country.
Travelling to a different country unfamiliar to you is often challenging to everyone irrespective of the reason behind the visit. Culture shock is no respecter of persons and is particularly more problematic when the traveler had neither prepared nor understood the visited country’s culture. Below are some of the most important facts one needs to familiarize with when planning to visit Portugal for business purposes with regards to personal space and rules of social behavior.
The Portuguese highly uphold their traditions thus are very formal and conservative in their interactions. Their relationships are very polite; they respect hierarchy and authorities who are often sought for guidance as well as decision making. Moreover, the Portuguese highly regard their appearance, which indirectly communicates a person’s social class or success. They therefore take it upon themselves to always dress at their best.
Initial greetings ought to be reserved, courteous and gracious. Handshakes involve eye contact alongside the appropriate greeting depending on the time of the day. Personal greetings only apply to those with personal relationships whereby men greet each other through a hug and a handshake whereas women may kiss each other twice from the right. When addressing one another use tiles like ‘senhor’ or ‘senhora’ with the surname whereas those with university degrees are addressed as either ‘doutour’ or ‘doutoura’. It is advisable that you address your Portuguese friend in the formal sense unless he/she allows you to use the informal.
Building a successful business in Portugal means that you have to be familiar with their business rules. The Portuguese venture into business with people they feel are trustworthy. For this reason, it is imperative that you make contact for introduction purposes. Developing the relationship requires a lot of investment in time, which will require you to have more face to face interaction with the people in charge. Changing a negotiating team translates to beginning the negotiations afresh. The negotiations are constantly formal and follow protocol. Respect is also highly regarded during the time of the business transactions; therefore, when having a discussion or presentation, it is important to let one finish the presentation before you interrupt. Despite the fact that using hand gestures are allowed, it is important for you to moderate your movements. In case the Portuguese fail to keep their promises this should be of little concern since the Portuguese are relaxed when it comes to keeping promises and time. Avoid direct criticism as this is thought to be impolite.
All business appointments should be made at least 1 to 2 weeks beforehand followed by confirmation a few days prior to the meeting date. A correspondence should also be prepared in Portuguese language. Avoid their holiday like August and between Christmas and New Year. Be punctual for meetings and in case you are kept waiting, you should not display irritability. Consider the agendas as starting points of discussions rather than schedules for the meeting. In addition, when speaking maintain eye contact and refrain from removing your jacket unless your business partners do so.
In conclusion, it is important for you to know that the Portuguese give a lot of importance to the character of the person with whom they do business. They will therefore take time to understand your persona. However, do not rush into the relationship building process. They are keen for details and take the entire process slowly thus patience is key here. Avoid aggressive conduct since they find this to be offensive. It is mandatory that you respect contracts.