Charles Martin in Uganda: What to Do When a Manager Goes Native

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September 19, 2011

Charles Martin in Uganda: What to Do When a Manager Goes Native

1. There are many Ugandan culture attributes that might affect operations of a foreign company doing business there. This includes corruption in the government that is also the highest degree of difficulty and risk any company could face. Moreover, Ugandan tends to hire relatives the locals recommend, though it might seem as a smart solution to hiring best human resources, this could cause complications in the future. Since more employees could be potentially closely connected with each other in different sectors, this could even involve the government. As a result this might create employees conducting favorites and perhaps even fraud. For instance, charging extra for imports clearance due to transaction agreement between friends within the company and a custom officer. The end result of such action is illegal and could result the company being sued, fined, or even imprisonment of an action performed by a local employee. Furthermore, paying extra in order to get things done is common within the Ugandan culture; this affects foreign company doing business because bribe or extra payments is illegal and or ethically unacceptable in powerhouse countries such as U.S and Canada. Finally, one last aspect is Ugandan’s trial rituals, this sometimes involves the international manager or representative themselves to participate in the ritual in order to continue the work needed to be done. Firms need to be aware of this culture enforcement because it could damage image of the corporation since many are under religious influence that are incompatible with the Ugandan culture.

2. The respective attitudes of Martin and Green are completely opposite of each other. Green definitely is ethnocentric because he believes the company should operate under the same morals and values as it does at home. Though the idea seems to be logical, however, under different cultures those morals and...
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