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    This whole thing about cultural differences is simply bunk! Essay

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    A further example is the Vauxhall Nova which was introduced in the Mexican market and failed to target consumers because Nova in Spanish means ‘does not go’. The latter is a good example which describes a feature of communication which causes problems, written and verbal translation. Words have different meaning in different languages. The meaning of Nova to us in English is bright where as in Spanish it means ‘does not go’. ‘Silent Language’ is another feature of communication which influences culture. Colours for example symbolise different things in different cultures.

    Black symbolises death in the west where as in Asian countries, white and purple relate to death. Body movements, facial expressions and gestures also influence communication. Communication is crucial when entering markets with diverse access. Market access fails if communication fails. Religion This is an important element of culture which must be respected always. It must be recognized in order to successfully access a market and sell a product. Magazine publishers are unable to sell some of their magazines such as FHM and GQ in Islamic countries because women must cover up, therefore having pictures of women in magazines is unacceptable.

    Social activities GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis and Pfizer are examples of pharmaceutical companies which use language and models to give talks to school children about HIV and AIDS in order to gain market access. Stereotyping Stereotyping is a ‘personality type to which we consign people on the basis of their membership of some group’5. This helps to understand people from different cultural backgrounds however care must be taken to ensure personality types are not exaggerated. Culture shock Culture shock is the impact people feel when they move into a new environment with a new culture.

    Students, especially international students feel a sense of excitement, challenge and are not sure 100% sure of what to expect as they move abroad. Culture shock is part of learning and adapting to any new culture. Conclusion As can be seen, national cultures affect organizational cultures in specific country settings. Firms must understand and recognise cultural differences so that they can manage them by learning to appreciate the various cultures, and understand the positive impact of being culturally savvy.

    If this is prepared for prior to venturing into new cultures then firms will be successful and no consequences will have to be faced. Failure to identify cultural differences will lead to failure in market access.

    1 http://stephan. dahl. at/intercultural/layers_of_culture. html 2 Trompenaars F. , (1993), Riding The Waves of Culture, 1st Edition, Nicholas Brealey Publishing 3 http://www. tuta. hut. fi/studies/Courses_and_schedules/Tps/TU-53. 309/SecondLecture. ppt.

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