The cross boarder business deals have been made more common than ever by the globalization process. Nevertheless, these business deals are lost or jeopardized when foreign associates are essentially offended by a particular country unaware of the other countries’ manners, cultures, and customs. Thus, it is important for those particular countries to be cultural sensitive. This is simply being both aware and accepting the other cultures. In business, this is vital because what seems to be acceptable in a particular country may appear derogatory in another and this might have negative effects on someone’s business.
A company’s competitive advantage can in fact be created by both developing and maintaining effective long term relationships with customers. Therefore, to achieve long term business relationships that are successful, the business needs to build up and uphold high degree of relationship quality. The internationalization theory proposes that there is a need for the culturally distant business people to allocate significant resources to building relationship activities with the foreign customers so that they can enhance mutual understanding and this will help in reducing the inherent uncertainties that are experienced in foreign markets.
For that reason, enhancing understanding of and the adaptation to the cultural differences in the foreign markets help these business men to conduct their businesses without much difficulty. Business persons who are actually sensitive to the cultures of the foreign customers will thus face less effective communication barriers hence they are in a better position of achieving successful business relationships that are long lasting. Lack of knowledge about the cultural differences in foreign countries thus creates difficulties in conducting businesses in such countries. The success in the international business marketing is determined by the firms’ ability to break down various cultural barriers and create close business relationships with the foreign partners.
Asian continent features diverse kinds of cultural heritage of many societies, nationalities, and ethnic groups. As a result, it is important for the business people to have this in mind before conducting their businesses in any country that is found in Asia. Vietnam is one of the countries that are found in South East of Asia. It is a culturally rich country where its distinctive history has aided in shaping its development of a modern state. Both the French colony and Chinese rule has actually influenced unique Vietnamese culture, values, traditions, beliefs, and business. Understanding the mentioned influences is very crucial for any company that is wishing to conduct a business that is successful in this country and build relationships that are strong with the people in this country.
There are various major cross cultural differences that one needs to put into consideration before expanding his or her business operations in this country. As mentioned, this country has various cultures hence it is important to be cultural sensitive when doing business there. One of these cross cultural differences is the family life in this country. The culture in this country places high value on family life. Thus, it is a common thing to find several generations living under the same roof. Following Confiscation tradition, the family head is the father and he makes crucial decisions. The life of the people found in this country is influenced by the ancestor worship and their children learn when they are still young that they actually owe their ancestors and parent everything. Respect for ancestors and parents is extended to all the elders in this country where their life experiences are much valued. In business situations, family importance is in addition apparent where family members’ opinions may in fact be considered during decision making process. Thus, it is important for a company wishing to expand its business operations bin this country to attend Cross Cultural Training Program to maximize their understanding of the culture in this country hence they will be in a position to approach business situations with confidence.
The other cross cultural difference that need to be considered is the issue of collectivism. This country is a collectivist country where the group needs are frequently placed over those of an individual. Therefore, the community and family concerns will always come before the individual or business needs. The society concept as a family extension is key to the Vietnamese business culture. Vietnamese usually tend to create their business relationships on personal basis and in addition, they are always relaxed on sharing their personal lives, as well as opinions, hobbies, and family issues. This actually may be uncomfortable to the foreign business persons who are accustomed to keeping their business and private life separate.
The third cross cultural difference is Confucianism. The people in this country believe in Confucius teachings. This was an early Chinese philosopher. These teachings stress the importance of responsibility, obligation, and relationships. In addition, the teachings promote respect for status and age. Therefore, this philosophy remains to be an important component in Vietnam. Confucianism principles in addition can be found in the Vietnamese business culture where collective good importance is essentially emphasized. It is thus important for a company to consider these three cross cultural differences before expanding its operations in this country.
United States has used marketing mix business tool that is more advanced than Vietnam. But in modern times, Vietnam has in fact exported its services and goods to the U.S market and other markets globally. In terms of the country’s product, Vietnam has been concentrating more on real estate products which are essentially sold to both foreign customers and Vietnamese. The country has also been exporting agricultural products like rice to other nations. On the other hand, US has been successful in product mix. The US economy has increased its product lines number where various product development strategies have been in use hence making these products more attractive.
In terms of promotion, the use of various promotional methods have been in use in Vietnam. Trade fairs, outdoor sourcing, making presentations, radio advertisements, and foreign Ad agencies have been employed in to promote the products produced in this country. United States on the other hand, have used various communication methods to provide information about its products to various consumers.
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Robinson, J. W. (1995). Doing business in Vietnam. Rocklin, CA: Prima Pub