Business Culture Italy

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R EPORT IN TO THE CULTURAL A S PECTS OF BUSINESS IN ITALY

http://www.italiansworldwidenetwork.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/itaestero1.jpg

Comparative Business Culture 2012
James Dyce 391375 Darren Cheung 335654

Italy’s Business: A Cultural Analysis!

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TABLE OF CONTENTS
I." "
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Introduction
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I.i. " I.ii.!

What is Business Culture? Impact of Business Culture

II."
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Country Profile: Italy
! ! II.i. ! Business culture in Italy

III." "
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Hofstede Centric Analysis of Italy’s Business Culture
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III.i ! Power Distance III.ii ! Individualism III.iii ! Masculinity III.iv. ! Uncertainty Avoidance III.v. ! Long-Term Orientation III.vi. Hofstede Critique

IV." V." VI."

Potential Issues and Recommendations Conclusion Bibliography

Italy’s Business: A Cultural Analysis!

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Introduction
This report will centre around the current business culture and Italy focusing on the current climate of Italy's economy and the similarities and differences when compared to other business cultures and the challenges that must be faced when doing business with or in the country. This report will begin by first explaining what exactly business culture is followed then with a general country profile of Italy followed by an explanation of the current business culture in the country. This will then be rounded off by an analysis of what problems may arise when doing business in Italy and suggested solutions of how to avoid or solve these issues.

What is Business Culture?
The definition of business culture in many ways is very similar to that of the culture of a country, geographical location or any other group or collective, and like these other cultural groups there are many definitions as to what exactly it is. Hofstede(1980) states culture as a “co"ective programming of the mind distinguishing the members of one group or category of people #om others” while Meade (1953) tells us that culture “is the total shared, learned behaviour of a society or a subgroup.” In both these examples when the definition of culture is orientated around people and their behaviours culture can be seen as a way a group of people have came to act around their peers through either direct or non-direct conditioning in order to fit in to the group, or in more simple terms a group identity. When this is put into a business context this pattern changes very little although instead of being how say a family interact with one another or with how much reverence is attached to things such as food, it is instead focuses on things such as how much importance is laid onto timekeeping or how formal the dress code is in a given situation. This is not to say there is no cross-over between these business and general culture, things such as how superiors are addressed, or the etiquette when meeting someone for this first time generally follow similar patterns a blight to slightly different degrees.

Impact of Business Culture
In recent years the importance of culture in business has came to be more and more well recognised, this is especially true due to the rise of globalisation with many companies buying, merging, joint venturing and generally doing business with each other globally now becoming the normal way to do things. Many companies found much to their dismay that the way business was conducted in their own country or business could have a vastly different or indeed a polar opposite outlook on how to do things in a difference business in another country. This was also true for those companies expanding and wanting to begin doing business in new terri-

Italy’s Business: A Cultural Analysis!

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tories, many of these found that their new local employees work ethic and indeed consumers culturally grounded opinions to be at odds with the company culture. This then caused many large companies to fail in their endeavours to expand to these new territories and new approached and...
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