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Cultural Understanding

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Submitted By nitinzachrias
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PLANNING AND PREPARATION SHEET- I

Question 1: Describe who you plan to ask? Where are they from? What is your relationship with this person? (no need to identify the person by name)

Answer 1:
I plan to ask my housemate. He is from China. I have known him for over 4 months and he comes across as an individual who would be in need of paper clips because I always see stacks of paper lying around his room.

Question 2: What are their cultural values? Based on your knowledge of this group or individual are they likely to “fit” with their culture?

Answer 2:
My interactions with Chinese individuals have given me the impression that they are of a gentle disposition and prefer their space. Similarly, they tend to find it difficult to say “no” and this is one of the reasons I felt that my roommate would be the right person to negotiate with. My roommate fit the Chinese prototype nicely and could be seen as a perfect fit with their culture.

Question 3: Given your knowledge of the person’s culture, what is your step-by-step plan for the meeting and what do you hope to get out of it?

Answer 3:
My step by step plan for the meeting is:
a.) Have a conversation to get him comfortable
b.) Make a point about his need for a paper clip
c.) Suggest that as I had solved a big issue for him, he owes me one. Although this sentence would be spoken in jest, Chinese tend to take things seriously and he is likely to give me something in return.

I hope to get a better understanding of how negotiations work across different cultures and whether such simplistic techniques can be enough to succeed.…...

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