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They grant significant respect to women, which allows them to easily adapt to the workplace. Humor is not valued within the Indian workplace, their culture encouraging formal relationships between employees.
The Work Environment in the U.S.
The U.S. work environment is significantly different than that in India. The business environment in the U.S. is results-oriented, encourages and support performance, efficiency, and productivity. The U.S. managers are trained in time management, given the fact that they must reduce the time spent for certain tasks and activities.
In addition to this, the work culture in this country is rather informal. Even so, employees must respect the work relationship they have with their superiors. In comparison with Indians, U.S. workers hold frequent meetings. The common characteristic is represented by the fact that participants in the meeting must respect certain speaking rules. The dressing code is variable and is established in accordance with the company's activity, size, and with each job. In the Indian workplace, employees must usually follow strict dressing codes (Immihelp, 2011).
In comparison with Indian companies, American ones pay great attention to the corporate social life. In other words, such companies organize numerous events, parties, and team building sessions. The Indian companies are rarely characterized by such phenomena.
Communication Across Cultures
There are several cultural differences between various regions in India. This means that companies that want to do business in this country must thoroughly assess the region they intend to address. In order to benefit from accurate results, it is recommended that these companies hire specialized human resources and marketing companies in India that are familiarized with the cultural environment and that are able to provide insight about the aspect that interest Western companies. In addition to this, such companies can provide recommendations and they can collaborate with foreign companies in developing and implementing personnel selection and recruitment, motivational, and marketing strategies that are suitable with the Indian environment.
Companies that do business in India must train their American employees when sending them to work in the company's Indian subsidiary. They must learn the public behavior that is accepted in India, conversational and networking rules, and the business etiquette. Asian and Arab countries have significantly different business etiquette. They differ in the number of meetings required for discussing deals and signing contracts, receiving and giving gifts to business partners, and communicating with foreign collaborators.
Negotiation and Decision Making
Many of the business techniques used in the U.S. are different in India. Even if American businessmen have strong communication and negotiation skills and knowledge, this knowledge might not be applicable in the Indian business environment. For example, American businessmen spend a lot of time scheduling meetings, while Indian businessmen prefer to focus on the people involved in the meeting and the event it is associated with (Executive Planet, 2010). This means that Indian businessmen are more flexible than their U.S. collaborators. This can be observed in the environment of the meeting that is usually a relaxed one.
U.S. businessmen should take into consideration the fact that numerous Indian businesses are owned by families. This is probably because of the collectivism orientation of the country that encourages and supports such types of business ownership. In addition to this, Indian businessmen prefer to relate to business partners that share such values. They also enjoy discussing personal issues in business meetings. Indians are considered to be curious people and might feel offended if their curiosity is not satisfied.
Also, in order for the negotiation to reach its expected results, it is recommended that the foreign business partners respect the rules that Indian workers must obey towards their superiors, even if they do not necessarily agree with these rules. The Indian business etiquette also reveals the conditions that must be met when participating to certain events with their business partners.
Negotiations between U.S. And Indian business partners are often characterized by misunderstandings derived from cultural differences, language barriers, and the lack of understanding between the parties involved in the negotiation. The decision making process in India is quite slow and thoughtful. Therefore, it is not recommended to rush Indian business partners into making decisions, because this is considered aggressive, rude, and disrespectful. It is recommended to benefit from proper training when doing business in this country (Gorrill, 2007).
Companies in the U.S. are continuously interested in improving the efficiency and productivity of their personnel. Their interest is revealed by the attention these companies pay to training programs and development of their employees. These companies value their human resources and understand that they must invest in their professional development in order to improve the company's productivity.
In order to help Indian employees to adapt to the American work culture, companies enroll their employees in intercultural training courses designed for the process of business outsourcing. There are numerous specialized companies across the world that provide such training services. These intercultural training services are designed in order to suit the needs and characteristics of each country (People Going Global, 2008).
Although India provides a large talent pool of skilled it workers, foreign companies feel the need to train their India employees. This is intended to help them familiarize with the American work culture and to try to adapt these workers to American work standards (BPO Watch, 2009). The differences between the two types of work cultures determine U.S. companies to invest in staff training.
The types of motivational strategies developed and implemented in India and in the U.S. are another divergent point between the two countries. The motivational strategy used by most U.S. companies relies on communication with the employees. These companies are interested in the feedback of employees regarding certain aspects. They try to include employees in the decision making process and to allow them to express their opinion about certain activities of the company.
Another important aspect addressed by the motivational strategy is represented the rewards and punishment system. Companies in the U.S. pay great attention to providing significant financial rewards and bonuses to employees that prove high efficiency. However, the rewards system depends on the type of activity and on the importance of the job. For example, positions that are characterized by high risks decisions are paid more, while positions that deal with more routine activities, like those in human resources, are paid less.
The situation is different in India. It has been observed in internal motivation factors are preferred by Indian employees. In other words, they prefer to be stimulated by employment packages that ensure them long-term stability. In addition to this, they are interested in learning opportunities that allow them to develop their career (BPO India, 2010). Indian employees put less emphasis on financial motivation. They are also interested in career advancements, in traveling, and in other benefits.
Companies that want to do business in India must pay attention to their communication with employees. In Indian companies, the manager supervises and controls the activity of his subordinates. The manager also gives advice to his subordinates on their tasks. Given the fact that Indian workers value self-esteem, criticism must be made in order to take this into consideration. American managers that are sent to work with Indian subordinates must be thoroughly trained in order to be able to adapt to the Indian culture. It is not recommended to determine Indian employees to adapt to the U.S. work culture because this might reduce their productivity. Therefore, it is their manager's job to help them achieve efficient results in accordance with the objectives established by the company and by its stakeholders.
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