Cultural environment

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Importance of the cultural environment in the international market

Many companies that are successful in their national market decide to go internationally but they fail in their attempt. Most of the time because their unable to recognize the cultural differences and adapt to it. They think that if a strategy work in their home market, it can be used indistinctively in the others, which is acostly mistake. Even we are in a globalize world, cultural differences still exist and if people is not able to recognize them, they won’t be able to succeed. The culture plays a crucial role in international business and because of that it is important to understand its effects when going to the global market.

When we refer to the cultural environment we talk about[1]“the whole range ofbehaviours and relationships in which individuals engage in their personal and private lives, including: the characteristics of the population, values and attitudes, lifestyles and relationships”. Because of this, the cultural environment is one of the aspects to take into account when doing business, however, it is often misunderstood. As a consequence, when the cultural differences are ignored,problems arise and that is the reason why in an international business you need to know how to manage this.

Because of that, when analysing the cultural environment of business it is important to recognize that society and culture are not homogeneous and that makes necessary that business stay in touch with this cultural shifts.

As mentioned, the cultural environment plays a major role whenentering to knew markets and if the company is not able to distinguished the differences it can be the failure of the business in that market. For example, the case of Kellogg’s in India, that did not research about the consumer preferences and behaviors, so it was not able to notice that Indians like to eat cereal with hot milk and their product was not made for that and this meant their failure and achange in their product to be able to succed in this market.

Also, globalization have a big impact. [2]“Globalization allows the flow of cultural ideas, belief and values which makes it a major factor in the emergence of common culture worldwide”. The globalization has created big opportunities for global collaboration between different countries, but also has created unique problems that arerelated with the effective management of relationships with different cultures. That is the reason why [3]“knowing the cultural environment allows to connect with the foreign counterparts”.

Additionally, Hofstede, an organizational sociologist, defines culture as “the collective mental programming of people in an environment”. This definition refers to the fact that people in a culture areconditioned by the same experiences and he argues that differences in motivation, management style and organization structures in the world can be attributed to the different mental conditioning.

Aa a consequence, it is important to consider that a business can be influenced by the cultural environment in which it is embedded because business is an activity that is undertaken by people whose valuesand attitudes are shaped by the culture of which they are a part and the roles they perform are related to this. So, the business’s own organizational culture can get in conflict with the culture of a new market, and that makes necessary to be able to adjust to this differences as they can affect the negotiation process and the relationship with the consumers.

Therefore, as the business itselfhave a culture and it could be a factor that influence its success or failure, shaping this culture is a key point because you need to avoid mistakes when doing business like judge others actions according to your own culture. As a consequence, organization’s culture influences the business result.

Besides, the differences in the cultural environments influence all dimension in international...
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