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United States and Czech Republic Cultures

Essay by   •  July 18, 2011  •  Essay  •  1,695 Words (7 Pages)  •  1,225 Views

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Introduction

A look at different cultures in the world will reveal many similarities and many differences. Currently in the world communism still exists and freedom is a dream waiting to come true for many. People tend to be riveted to their cultures, traditions and values. I can attest to that because of the fact that I will under no circumstances eat any pig products because of my customs, culture and values which was instilled in me as a child. Cultures and values are essential components which defines an individual thinking which will also be seen spilling over to the business world. A closer study of Czechoslovakia and United States will reveal the common aspects of doing business and the differences because of cultures and values, traditions and non-traditions.

United States and Czech Republic Cultures

United States Culture

The US has over the years established a very high standard of work ethic based on growth, development, achievement, accountability and many other factors to keep them ahead and give the US that edge from other nations. The culture differences between the US and many other countries are very distinct and noticeable. The US cultural values embodies individuals to play a pivotal part in the business future while being realistic in their aspirations and working hard to accomplish the objective goal. The US business environment also embodies that an employee's primary obligation is to the organization they belong to, because employees can be easily terminated for failure to perform job standards assigned by the organization. The US system is also based on competition, which is believed to stimulate high performance employees and generate a successful business. Many companies build its foundation and success on innovation, hard work and integrity. The US companies are defined by a few basic characteristics. They have a willingness to take on challenges and explore new ideas; they have the drive to excel and the determination to perform their best. The embrace hands on mentoring and dedication to the success of the people. These are all examples of how the culture and values are governed in the US business environment. If Steve Kafka, has these same values and principles doing business in the US then perhaps he will be able to venture into a successful business arrangement with the Czech Republic citizens.

Czech Republic Culture

The Czech Republic was once a country belonging to the communist Soviet Union, the breakaway from communism has brought many changes for the lives of the Czech citizens. However, the Czechs although they are no longer married to communism has indeed adopt and kept many of the communist culture and values as seen in their business style. Unlike the US, where individuals are encouraged to make individual decisions and take risks, the Czechs rely more on communitarianism, where they believe in group decision making, the Czechs also firmly believe in achieving which is one of the similarities between the Czechs and the US. The Czechs also share a neutral and specific culture where emotions are held in check and public life is open to all but private life is privilege to few. Steve Kafka will need to understand and break down the culture, customs and etiquette of the Czechs, when venturing to open his pizza shop. The most important aspect of the Czechs lives is their family, the family is the center of the social structure, Steve Kafka can use this as a guide, to integrate this as the theme for his restaurant by focusing on the family and the traditions of spending time with the family in the Czech Republic. Czechs are known to be private people until they get to know an individual, they are formal and reserve, once an individual develops a personal relationship Czechs open up a bit, but they are never openly emotional. These are qualities Steve will need to study, embrace and penetrate the barriers and establish himself as a Czech and one who promises to deliver and bring the family together with his pizza restaurant. Although Steve Kafka has a heritage from Czech Republic and he speaks the language, he will still be seen as an outsider trying to capitalize on the Czechs market, he will face many challenges and criticism, one of the distinct features of the Czechs is that on Fridays after lunch many business close early and the same applies on for the month of August, these changes in the customs and practices of the Czechs , Steve will have to implement ways to divert the traditions and maintain a successful business, I believe that if Steve learn and spend time understanding the business environment and the people where he plans to establish his pizza shop, if he respects their customs and values even though he shares similar customs and values.

Hofstede Four Primary Dimensions.

While Steve Kafka embarks on a study of the Czechs and their business environment to establish his business, the Hofstede's theory will give him a heads start and an eye opener as to the challenges he will be faced with. The Cultural Comparison Graph below shows an idea of the relationship of Hofstede's theory between the US and the Czechs based on the four primary dimensions of Power Distance Index (PDI), Individualism,

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