Case 14-2 – Marketing an Industrial Product in Latin America 1) The Sales Manager, in this case, had already predetermined the outcome of his stay and the time frame this would occur in without taking the country and its cultural norms into the equation. Cultural norms ‘are sometimes referred to as the way things are done around here’ (Human Resource Institute, 2006) and despite getting a way to conduct himself as well as guidance to follow the lead of the commercial attaché, the sales manager, was more concerned about the sale than about the relationship he needed to forge with the purchasing manager.
The Purchasing Manager, used to being heavily involved in the daily process of meeting suppliers and sales people, seems the person who would take them through the process of discovering if they were purely there for a quick sale, or if there were looking at forging a relationship with him and his company. Understanding the irritability factor from his secretary of the sales manager when at his office, sensing his uneasiness at understanding the time constraints on the purchasing manager with the myriad of calls and details he had to go through during the meeting would have already set him off to stereotype the sales manager to being very ‘American’ wanting things his way and not interested in the cultural significance the purchasing manager himself brought to the table with his books on poetry.
Further, the sales manager seemed to relax slightly during dinner and the nightclub plan after that would leave the impression on the purchasing manager that perhaps, gratitude and appreciation for the purchasing manager’s time and hospitality has had an effect on the sales manager. Perhaps at this stage, the misgivings about the American sales manager would take second place to the need to do business with the American company and the fact that the sales manager perhaps needed time to relax.
However, the following day with the irritability evident about...
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