1. What is the difference between a gift and a bribe? How would you, as a representative of your company, respond to an offer of a questionable bribe from an international government or business professional? As it relates to bribery and international business, what are your thoughts with the following saying “When in Rome do as the Romans?” Note: students are expected to use references beyond the textbook in order to assist them with their answer.
2. Does globalization result in cultural and economic homogenization (alikeness) through a heightened emphasis on consumerism, or is this an exaggeration? Explain and defend your position. Note: students are expected to use references beyond the textbook in order to assist them with their answer
3. Do you believe Facebook, MySpace, and other such social-networking sites are, will, or can promote more commonly shared values of people across cultures—knowing that some countries have their own such Web sites in their language? Explain.
4. Explain the differences in perception and experience with regard to moral issues for (a) a host country viewing an MNE and (b) an MNE viewing a host country. Which perspective are you more inclined to support or sympathize with? Why?
5. Offer an example of and explain why one of your own values or an ethical standard you deeply believe in and follow might conflict with a different cultural or regional ethic in, for example China, Russia, the Middle East, or the U.S. (if you are from a different culture). How flexible would you be, or not be, in negotiating one of your core beliefs in another culture? What would be your constraints on being flexible and changing your value-based position? Explain.
6. Evaluate and argue different sides of this statement: “McDonaldization is not a ‘bad’ thing. Everyone has a choice of what and how much to buy and consume. People are lucky to have a low cost food option like McDonald’s.” Note: students are expected to use references beyond the textbook in order to assist them with their answer
7. You (Jane) are a 29-year-old single woman who has an MBA and has been working in your current marketing position for a year. Your firm recently opened a new pilot branch in a somewhat remote Russian location. The CEO of your company believes there are real growth opportunities for your firm’s products in that region and also wants visibility there. The company has decided to launch a small office there for visibility as well as to introduce the product. You are one of the most outgoing and talented marketing professionals in your firm. It is believed that you’ll make a positive impression and represent the company well.
There is a small community of American business professionals there who will assist you. Country values there are very different from what you are accustomed to. You overhear a discussion between two of your male colleagues who were recently in that country completing arrangements for the office. One says, “Jane’s going to have some interesting challenges with the men she has to do business with. . . . It’s like the Wild West.” The other answered, “Yeah, she’s got some real surprises coming.” Your research suggests that country laws and norms on issues you take for granted (like women’s rights and sexual harassment) are not well defined.
You have a conflict over wanting to advance with your company but not wanting to take this assignment. You are aware that the CEO has his mind set. In fact, you’ve already had a discussion expressing your concerns and fears. He brushed your issues aside when he told you earlier, “Jane, try it. You need the international exposure and experience.” The second time you approached him with your concerns, he blurted out, “Look, Jane. I understand your concerns, but this is important to me and our company. There are some people there who can help you. I know it’s going to be a challenge. But after a couple of years, you’ll thank me.” You still don’t feel right.
1. What do you do, and why?
2. If you do decide to go, what speciﬁc preparations should you make?
3. If you decide not to go, draft out the dialogue you would have with your CEO.
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