Cross-Cultural Communication Research Paper
Bulgaria vs. Germany: Business Culture Contrasts
December 05, 2011
Each country and its inhabitants have their own specific way of communicating with one other. It involves greeting, laughing, smiling, and basically every kind of human behavior. This specific behavior we simply call – culture. The culture reflects in every aspect of people’s everyday life, even at our workplace or business. It is not surprising, that business culture reflects many aspects of the culture itself. Indeed, national culture often serves as a model for companies’ culture. Thinking of business and business culture no one can skip one of the leading economies in the world – Germany. Comparing the Bulgarian and German culture and business relations is a very exciting topic. It is very interesting how both countries’ cultures are influenced from the history they had for the last 60 years, creating different and contrasting business environment. The typical inhabitants both have different context culture: “Otto Mustermann” for Germany has a low-context and “Bai Ganyo” for Bulgaria has a high-context culture. Having a look at all the economical and statistical charts, these two countries always diverge as black and white from one another. But what are the basic geographical and demographic differences between Bulgaria and Germany? As a matter of fact Germany’s area is three times bigger than the Bulgaria’s one and it has eleven times more population (81.7 million in 2010), which means really a lot of people to do business and to communicate with. The lowest salary in Germany is eight times higher than the one in Bulgaria and the rank “ease of doing business” for Germany is much better than the Bulgarian one. Comparing countries’ indexes and facts it looks like nothing is better in Bulgaria than in Germany!? Having a deep look in the culture of both countries may show another results.
THE CULTURE IS DEEPLY ROOTED IN HISTORY
If there is something which influences the culture at most, this is the history. Both countries have an exciting history. What Germany and Bulgaria had in common is the communism period, with the exception that the west part of Germany never had this influence. The communism was a period of limits. It created many rules, leading to many privations and people distraction. The political disunion in Germany after the World War II influenced the people’s culture and way of behavior and created frugal, patient and taciturn people. Those people of course work in the same strict and reserved business environment. Because of the people’s nature the companies have autonomous departments and business units with very little and sometimes even without any communication between the various companies’ compartments. Germans corporations can be classified as bureaucratic organizations in which personal relations play a minor role because the focus is on the tasks at hand, everything depends on the personal skills. In comparison to the Germans the Bulgarians were influenced in a very different way. All those limits and privations during the age of communism created very open-minded, gregarious, good-humored, motivated and strong people, when this era finished. Since 1989, when the democracy age started, the citizens were finally allowed to have private business. This fairly new business environment is full with motivated and creative people inspired by the new opportunities they now have.. In comparison to the Germans’ taciturn relationships the Bulgarian companies have better and easier communication between one another. OTTO MUSTERMANN AND BAI GANYO
Despite those differences both countries are doing business together very well. According to the governments review from December 2009 Germany has ranked among the leaders in terms of direct investment in Bulgaria. More than 1200 companies are active and they are doing really well. Although this is much more because of the economic...
References: Bulgarian Investment Review. (2009, December). Sofia, Bulgaria: InvestBulgaria Agency. Retrieved from http://investbg.government.bg/upfs/45/BIR%2012.2009.pdf
Culture 's Influence on Business as Illustrated by German Business Culture
Beamer, L., & Varner, I. (2008). Intercultural Communication In The Global Workplace (fourth ed.). The McGraw-Hill Companies.
CultureGrams.com. (2011). "Bulgaria". Retrieved from http://online.culturegrams.com.proxy.cityu.edu/pdf/world_pdf.php?id=26
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