Global Business Cultural Analysis: Italy
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- Word count: 4890
- Category: Business Communication Italy
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Globalization has an impact on how nations do international business. In ever nation there are particular dimensions of culture that can impact international business. The paper will discuss and analyze the major elements and dimensions of culture in Italy. The dimensions of culture discussed in the paper are languages, values, dress code, etiquette, time, and education. The paper then discusses how these elements and dimensions are integrated by locals conducting business in Italy. The paper then describes how elements and dimension, and integration by locals in Italy compare to culture and business in the United States. Finally, the paper discusses implications for US businesses that wish to conduct business in this region.
Global Business Cultural Analysis: Italy
Globalization in the business world is known as the advancement or development of businesses within a globalized world. Every nation has different cultures and systems for conducting business. In order for globalization to be successful all cultures have to be incorporated and combined into the business world. There are particular dimensions of culture that can impact globalized business between nations. The main dimensions of culture that can impact globalized business are languages, communication, values, dress code, etiquette, time, education, and politics. Italy is a nation that is centered on family relationships, trust, and socialization. Locals in Italy integrate these elements and dimensions into conducting business. The culture and business in the United States compares to and different from the elements and dimension, along with the integration by locals in Italy. Then the paper will discuss implications for United States businesses that wish to conduct business in this region. Background
Italy is a long cape shaped in the form of a boot, enclosed by the Tyrrhenian Sea and Adriatic, constrained by France, Switzerland, Austria, and Slovenia. Italy has been a Fascist government since 1922. In 1938 anti-Jewish laws were ratified by Italy banishing Jewish pupils and instructors from schools; limiting the Jewish community, specialized and financial presence, and canceling the residency of Jews that had been established after 1919. In 1940 Mussolini declared that before 1925 Italy would not have any more Jews. In 1940 Jews that were still in Italy were detained and imprisoned in camps, when Italy merged into the war. In 1943 the Allies landed in Sicily. Mussolini was defeated in 1943. Mussolini’s replacement engaged a cease-fire contract with the Allies in 1943. Then Mussolini was resumed into control, and the Fascist government was reinstated.
The banishment of Jews was directed by German militaries in 1943. What are the major elements and dimensions of culture in this region? The main dimensions of culture in Italy are languages, values, styles, etiquette, time, education, and politics. There are seven cultural dimensions and Italy has a placement in each dimension. The first cultural dimension is Universalism vs. Particularism. Italy is between both dimensions. The nation uses rules as guidelines, not universal truths. Individualism vs. Communitarism is the next cultural dimensions. Amongst the two, the Italy citations are individualistic people because they put themselves and family first in life. Specific vs. Diffuse emphases on parting amongst altered features of life such as professional and personal.
Italy’s society try to incorporate professional parts into their personal lives. Affective vs. Neutral determines how individuals display or conceal their feelings. Italy’s citizens are affectionate individuals who like to embellish everything. Achievement vs. Ascription is when an individual has to accomplish goals to achieve a particular standing or were born with position and honors. Sequential vs. Synchronic Time is the next cultural dimension. Italy is known for synchronic time, they do not have a significance for promptness and do not keep a strict schedule. Inner vs. Outer Directed is whether or not a civilization believes it is guiding nature however difficult it will be, or Outer directed cultures consider what happens is nature and explains it as faith. Language
There are two diverse influences that contribute to Italy’s language. Tuscany and Florence had the biggest influence on Italy’s language. The setting of Tuscany is how Italy’s language established the Tuscan dialectal impact. The numerous industry operations in Florence enable it to be one of the most powerful cities in Italy. Italy’s dominate language is Italian. There is only 7% of the population that is not native. There are some smaller cities that have languages in Italy but they are not officially recognized. Friulian, Ladin, and Slovene are all pronounced in the north district of Italy. In the south district of Italy Albanian, Catalan, and Sardinia are pronounced. Communication
Communication is essential for all businesses in global business. The culture of a nation has a great impact on communication and can cause conflicts, when there is a language barrier. All individuals communicate by their chosen language and upbringing. In Italy communication consist of verbal communication and non-verbal communication. When doing business in Italy it is essential to know and understand Italian. In Italy is shows respect to know the language and communicate when doing business. Italians are known for feisty debates, acquainted information, business cards, hand gestures, and formal conversation. Verbal communication should be clear and direct to avoid misunderstandings or confusion. Nonverbal communication is also very critical in Italy. In Italy individuals like to motion with their hands and they are very invading of personal space. Non-verbal communication for Italy also consist of hugging and air kissing of the cheeks. Communication in Italy is so dominant that it will benefit and promote a nation that wants to do business if the nation can efficiently communicate verbal and non-verbal.
Italy’s cultural values are genuinely centered on family and close friends. Family in Italy is known for emotional, monetary support, and trust. Italy’s cultural values have a large impact on the business segment because most businesses are family owned in Italy. Italy has the highest ratio of family owned businesses through Europe. Values are stronger within smaller family owned business versus large business because in family owned businesses all employees have the same morals and upbringing. In Italy family foundations are formed on values that maintain flexibility and strength amongst the family. Italy’s family structures have a strong bond and work together to adjust to any cultural changes even in the business aspect. Ethics and Religion
Religion and Ethics are consistent elements and dimensions of culture within Italy. Religion has an influence on business culture in Italy. Religion is an extremely considered lifestyle in Italy. Italy’s main religion is Roman Catholic: Christianity. Ethics are very critical in Italy when conducting globalized business, all individuals are expected to conduct their selves in an ethical style. In Italy business owners conduct themselves in an ethical manner consisted of honestly, morals, respect, and dignity. Globalized business can have a negative impact if one of the nations do not respect the religion or ethics of the other. Styles
In Italy dress apparel and style are important for first impressions. An individual’s dress style can describe details about the individual such as designate social position, family circumstantial, and educational rank. The style in the business culture depends on the particular business atmosphere. If a particular business has a traditional atmosphere, traditional attire will be reflected, if the business atmosphere is relaxed then the style will be causal, and if the atmosphere is formal then the style will be formal. In order to impress business owners in Italy, the proposed business should research and determine which dress style is appropriate for the first meeting. Italians will judge an individual on their dress style, accessories, and the way they present their selves. Etiquette and Time
Greetings in Italy are passionate but relatively proper. A causal handshake with direct eye interaction, with smile serves amongst visitors. After a bond grows, air-kissing on bilateral cheeks, and a pat on the back is acceptable. In Italy individuals use proper names such as Mr. or Mrs. With the last name, until asked to be called on a first name base. First impressions in Italy are essential, so individuals should use respect and politeness when greeting individuals, exclusively when meeting for the first time. Italians use profession cards which are more informative then business cards. Profession cards are a good idea to use in Italy when conducting business.
Gift Giving Etiquette in Italy is very common. A common gifts that is used in Italy is high quality wine. Dining Etiquette is very structured in Italy. Dress style for dining parties should be formal even if the invite states informal. It is a complement if flowers are delivered to the party before stat time and to bring a wrapped gift such as wine or chocolates. Punctuality is not mandatory in Italy. Italians are seldom on time. It is not rude to be at least 15 minutes late and 30 minutes late to a dinner. Italians have long conversations and never begin any dinner or meeting on time. Education
Education is a high significance in Italy. All children that are residents in Italy have free State education. Education starts at age three for nursery school. Children begin official, required education in primary school at age six. Primary school lasts for five years, within the five years children study reading and writing, mathematics, geography, science, Italian and English language. The classes for children have at max 25 students. Secondary education begins at age eleven. The secondary education is also known as First Grade Secondary School. This level last until age fourteen. High school also known as Second Grade Secondary School has six different types of programs for students. Then students have three years to obtain their Bachelor’s Degree also known as Laurea. Vocational schooling is also called the Formazione Professionale. The first stage last for three years and the student is presented the Qualifica Professionale. The next stage consist of two years and students receive the Licenza professionale or the Maturità professionale. Politics
The article discusses the government in Italy. Italy elected to eliminate the Monarchy and converted to a Democratic Republic in 1946. There are 945 elected members within the Italian government. There are two branches within the government, the Italian Chamber of Deputies and The Italian Senate. Both branches have equal privileges and control. Italy’s voting arrangement is not based on a voting cast, each nominees are categorized in order of significance. The lead of state is self-governing of all branches of government which is the President. The President aids as a central point between all branches of authority. Each President is designated for a seven year period. No President has ever been designated for two terms. The President assigns the Council of Ministers the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister counsels the President on the conformation of the Council of Ministers, which includes the priests in control of the other constitutional branches.
How are these elements and dimensions integrated by locals conducting business in the nation? In Italy it improves how businesses interact successfully and effectively when understanding cultural features of Italy, while overcoming difficulties that may arise when conducting business. Italy has numerous small and medium family owned businesses. Most businesses in Italy are family owned, which can cause weakness and hierarchical within the organization structures. All decisions of the business is determined by the owner or by the family. In Italy communication is very essential for business owners. Italians will become louder during discussions, along with being dramatic. Italians may use formal be formal in business conversations. In Italy promptness is not essential. It is common for business meetings to start late. Businesses in Italy do not have business plans or an advertising plan. Respectable Etiquettes
Local businesses in Italy have respectable etiquettes, elegant behaviour, and dress to impress. In Italy respect is considered above any other behaviour. In Italy there is hardy space left between individuals when conversation is taking place. It is considered unfavourable to dodge eye interaction, shaking hands, and keeping space. When building relationships within a business, business owners will embrace common faces. In Italy all citizens believe what you wear will make a strong imprint on individuals. Punctuality is not essential in Italy unless the business owner is late continuously. Hospitality has a huge impact on business in Italy. Italy business owners desire to do business with individuals they are familiar with. Individuals should use acquaintances and links to announce themselves before arranging meetings or business deals. Communication
All local business in Italy believe in strong concrete communication. First impressions are vital to the Italian culture, and will have an influence on the business connection. Italians are very informative and enjoy feisty debates. Italians only discuss matters they are familiar with. Local businesses in Italy use business cards to draw business and inform individuals of the business. Handshakes are normal as a sign of welcome, a more welcoming salutation is kissing on the cheeks. Kissing on the cheeks is for familiar business associated individuals. Eye contact is very essential to determine trust and interest in the meeting. When conducting business in Italy it is proper to use an individual’s last name unless it has been discussed otherwise. Traditions
In Italy culture, traditions, and customs impact local business owners. Italians prefer to do business with individuals they have a relationship with and have already established trust. Business meetings commonly happen amongst 10 -11 a.m. or after 3 p.m. in the afternoon. Negotiations can take a long time with a business in Italy because Italians want to comprehend matters fully and completely trust the individual they are considering to work with. Being impatient is a sign of weakness and Italians only want to perform business with strong, determined individuals. In Italy respectable manners and graciousness are essential. Once an Italian business owner becomes acquainted they will squeeze or welcome with a kiss. Business in Italy is known for performing business deals at a luncheon or dinner. Italians believe that meeting for a meal is a form of mingling and getting to know all individuals.
The discussions are not always limited to business, also there will be a variety from recent affairs, foreign customs to athletics. How do both of the above items compare with US culture and business? Italy and the United States have some common elements and dimensions of culture, along with some differences. Greeting, dress style, gifts, corporate culture, dining, entertainment, time, communication, rules and regulations, making decisions and leadership, competition or motivation, excellent client service, job satisfaction, and international virtual team are all areas of elements and dimensions of culture between both nations. Each area is essential when conducting globalized business. The United States must understand their culture and the differences they will encounter when conducting business in Italy. Greetings, Dress style, and Gifts
When business partners are meeting for the first time it is polite to introduce themselves by smiling and shaking hands. Americans do not invade personal space, they is a two to three feet distance between parties. In American businesses it is common to use first names instead of Mr. or Mrs. Americans will introduce higher ranking business partners first. Americans have small talk, and always appear to be happy in front of business proposals. Americans normally depart by small lines such as “we should get together”. This does not always mean the individuals is going to chat later. Americans feel as though religion should be void from any business setting. American greetings are normally rather informal, it is not anticipated to seem disrespectful, but everyone is treated equally. Americans do not always shake hands when meeting, normally it is a simple hello. If there is too many individuals in a room, Americans may not even speak at all. When American’s introduce business individuals they include professional information and titles.
Americans do not get to close to individuals, such as Italians. Americans must watch colleagues to see if they are comfortable with touching such as a back tap, or a hug. Americans do not use the middle finger in any fashion because it is known as offensive and rude. Americans smile at everyone, this is a silent hello. Americans are very standoffish and will engage in greetings first. Eye contact is not essential to Americans as it is for Italians. Americans do not feel that greeting is a long process or should be extended for a long period of time. Americans have a casual dress code for most businesses. Business dress varies by region in the United States. Americans appreciate gifts of any sort, but in most business employees are not permitted to take gifts from clients. Gift giving amongst businesses are not common or extravagant. Corporate culture
Americans establish business amongst organizations rather than amongst individuals. Americans want the biggest business deals that will make the most money with the less time invested. Americans want to receive the best price and deal, rather than a relationship with a small business. Americans do not think personal relations are mandatory or needed to have a positive professional relationship. Americans believe that if a personal relationship is build it can hinder or cause conflicts within the business. Professional life and personal life should be separate to conduct in the most professional manner to perform an actuate job, in the eyes of Americans. Americans culture is extremely different than Italian culture because Italian culture is centered on family and most businesses in Italy are family owned. Dining, Entertainment, and Time
Americans entertain in their households, a backyard cookout, or in diners. Americans do not believe is large social parties to conduct business. Americans like small informal parties that are only centred around work or business partners. Americans always have work agendas and stay on task to avoid wasted time. Work Agendas help to keep the dinner or meeting flowing at a regular pace. Americans do not sat and socialize like Italians, they eat faster than any other individuals from different countries. Americans are promptly, they believe promptly means that the individual is great for the job and reliable. Americans are strict on arriving on time for any business mater. Communication
Americans are straight forward in conversations, to the point, and detailed in business information. Americans feel that in the business settings individuals need to express themselves and speak openly to save time and money. Americans do not extend communication to topics that are not business related. Americans are in a hurry to conduct business not discuss the weather or sports. Americans may often have visual matters such as posters, books, computer PowerPoints, or other information that helps to communicate the business information. Americans unlike Italians do not stress over face to face communication. Americans do not always get to know individuals that they do business with. Americans feel that communication is just as promising over the phone or by emailing. Americans thoughts is that as long as the point is reached no other form of communication is needed. Rules and regulations, making decisions and leadership, competition or motivation, excellent client service, job satisfaction, and international virtual team.
The article explains rules and regulations, making decisions and leadership, competition or motivation, excellent client service, job satisfaction, and international virtual team. Americans are law enduring and have rules and guidelines in any business setting. Each business has a durable structural culture with stern rules to abide by. Any decisions made within a business are established and enforced by the head of the business. Employees hardly defy or question assessments or directions from the business management. Americans see competition as constructive. Businesses award competition for employees that have increased sales or services. Americans enhance their businesses by catering to their customers. Customers or clients always come first. Americans unlike Italians will do anything to please their clients. For Americans job satisfaction is very essential for success of the business.
Americans believe in great work ethics, a confident, positive and lively manner. Americans aim for uniqueness, competitiveness, productivity, familiarity, and openness to advancement and change. What are the implications for US businesses that wish to conduct business in Italy? In order for the United States to conduct successful business in Italy it must learn and understand how to adjust communication practices, a relationship, customs, language barriers, targeting audience, technology and politics. The United Stated must learn to make changes and adapt to culture in Italy to build and support a strong globalized business. In order for the United States to make changes the leadership needs to work together and develop a relationship with Italy. Leadership
Leadership begins with a plan to develop areas to succeed in business. When conducting global business, they has to be changes in order to properly conduct business in the nation. The leadership amongst the United States must develop a plan to successful adapt to some of Italy’s elements and dimensions of culture. The United Stated must plan and research essential business areas in Italy to know how to conduct business. The United States must be able to strength the areas of communication, building a relationship, customs, language barriers, technology and politics to fully understand how Italy ruins day in and day out. Leadership will help the United States to overcome obstacles and conflicts that occur. Communication practices and Language barriers
Ethnocentrism is known as the belief that one nation believes that its culture is better than another, Ethnocentrism can hinder communication and issues will arise. Developed tension between the parties, can cause conflicts in the business deal. Culture will impact communication during international business thru a language barrier, technological differences, organizational structure, body language, and punctually. International business can be difficult because of language barriers. Americans do not know the language or body gestures that business owners use in Italy. If Americans are not familiar with Italian language or gestures it will show disrespect. Americans must study all forms of communication to perform successful business in Italy. Americans should have business cards in English and French, so they can pass out their information at public places. Italians are big on dinner meeting that are proper and extended, so Americans need to be prepared to talk and take their time during the dinner. I perfect time to communicate. Americans need to adjust to Italians during conversation. Italians ask several questions and will interrupt the speaker at any time, Americans must know to relax and keep the conversation going. Relationship
Americans do not care to make personal relationships, while conducting business. Americans like to jump straight to the point and do not like to waste time. Americans must learn to chat and engage conversation when conducting business in Italy. Italians find it rude if an individual do not speak or answer questions. Americans can build relationships in Italy by hosting business meetings or dinners to socialize. Business meetings give Italians time to chat and exchange information. Italians will feel more comfortable once they get to know an individual and learn about their lifestyle. It is essential to form and keep relationships when conducting globalized business. Forming relationships help to establish trust and faith in the individual. Customs
Nations should consider different customs a nation may have when doing business. Being familiar with the culture of a nation can help with the business proposal, and help the nation relate and gain the trust of the other party. Organization structure can cause conflicts between international businesses because Italians are used to discussing matters with family or the business owner, when Americans are use to a structure that involves different parties. Body language can be confusing at times. Different cultures have different attitudes and it may be hard to recognize how an individual may truly feel. Punctually may cause issues because Italians do not stress to be on time, where Americans believe in being on time and starting in a timely manner. To address individuals in Italy there should be referred to as Monsieur or Madame. In Italy things are much more formal than in the United States. Americans should introduce themselves using their first and last name or last name first. Italians use handshakes to greet and welcome individuals.
The handshake should be quick and graceful. Italians believe it is disrespectful not to shake heads. Italians believe in looking nice, on the other hand Americans are more causal. To make an amazing first impression, Americans should always wear business dress, to look professional. Learning French gestures can help Americans associates with Italians and build trust. Americans should have business cards in English and French, so business possibilities can read and understand the card. Italians are big on dinner meeting that are proper and extended. Americans need to be prepared to talk and take their time. Italians prefer to keep business and family life isolated. Americans need to adjust to Italians during conversation. Italians ask several questions and will interrupt the speaker at any time. The Targeting Audience
A nation should always study the targeted audience they are doing business with to ensure they can relate and persuade the individuals to seal the business proposal. The United States should research and take notes on the languages, communication, values, dress code, etiquette, time, education, and politics information that Italy conducts every day. The United States needs to know as much information possible to relate to Italians and respect their lifestyle. It is a good idea for the United States to have a known spokesperson in Italy. The spokesperson can help to assist in communication strategies and helping the Americans become familiar with local businesses. Americans need to be able to relate with Italy’s businesses and the only way to successful connect is to know all aspects of living and business protocol in the nation. Technology and politics
The United States is advanced in technology but must remember Italy may use different technology. If one nation uses advanced technology that the other nation is not familiar with it can cause confusion and issues during the business deal. Having a lack of knowledge on technology can cause communication barriers as well. Advancement in technology can be difficult to understand when it has never been seen or worked with. The United States has advanced technology that Italy has never been trained on. The United States can set up meetings to discuss different technology and train Italy’s representatives on how to use and navigate the technology. A nation’s political view can effect whether or not a nation does business with another nation that has opposite political views. In the United States Americans focus on freedom, equal opportunity, democracy, individuality, harmony, and diversity.
The United States has political disputes on how accomplish these principles. The United States believe that individuals should be able to do what they want, including freedom of speech. Freedom is established within guidelines that individuals may do what they want without interfering with someone else’s freedom. Equal opportunity is where all individuals are determined equal under the law. All Americans have the same rights and opportunity. Democracy is when all individuals have a say in decisions made within the nation. Individuality is protected in the United States by the bill of rights. Harmony is peace within the nation. Diversity is when Americans have multiple cultural backgrounds and embrace a variability of morals. Italy is a democratic republic, where the citizens have some authority and elected officials make up the government. The United States and Italy have similar political views, but it is always a great idea for the less amount of political conversation in business proposals. Conclusion
Globalization business pertains to two nations that must understand elements and dimensions of culture to successful conduct business together. A global business cultural analysis evaluates the cultural perceptions of conducting business in another nation. The analysis has information to successful understand and study cultures to enable a successful business deal. According to the analysis, Italy has dimensions of culture that can impact globalized business. The elements and dimensions of Italy’s culture are languages, communication, values, dress code, etiquette, time, education, and politics. The listed elements and dimensions of culture in Italy offer a beneficial research start for nations that are conducting business.
Local business owners in Italy have learned to adapt to the elements and dimensions of culture in Italy. Local business owners how to communicate, the etiquettes that are essential, and traditions that impact business. The United States culture has some similarities to Italy. There are several elements and dimensions of the United States culture that is different to Italy. In order for the United States to conduct business in Italy, Americans must understand and respect Italy’s greeting style, dress style, gift procedures, corporate culture, dining, entertainment, time, communication, rules and regulations, making decisions and leadership, competition or motivation, excellent client service, job satisfaction, and international virtual team are all areas of elements and dimensions of culture between both nations.
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