Web conferencing is currently a major tool available to the business world. Its advertised uses are to save time and travel costs, bring large groups together for meetings, training presentations and interviews, allow sales teams to deliver a sales pitch from anywhere in the world and the ability to reach key decision-makers quickly. (Cochand, 2011) What is not presented is a disclaimer warning that knowing the intended audience is important prior to replacing the traditional method of face-to-face meetings, with the new wave of technology based meetings. Laying the framework for potential deals on the international stage still requires face-to-face meetings and a thorough understanding of not only the people involved but an understanding of the culture is necessary for success.
The idea that modern information and communication technology reduces the need for foreign business travel is a misleading claim. The underlying idea in the “It’s All About Face-to-Face” case study is building relationships and showing a presence is necessary to successful relationships in business especially on the international stage. The keystone to building a solid relationship is presence. By being present you are able to learn, firsthand, from the culture in which you wish to enter your product. You discover if the product fits in well or if tweaks are required to blend it in with the environment. With the example of Bill Roedy of MTV Networks, his in person exposure to Arab rappers Jeddah Legends allowed him to learn that their lyrics are generally about family and religion (Kreitner, Kinicki, 2010). In the US, rappers do not tend to rap about the similar topics. Mr. Roedy was able to adjust his view, attend his face-to-face meeting and truthfully answer questions based on what he learned in person in previous days (Kreitner, Kinicki, 2010).
Understanding the culture in terms of being a high-context or low context culture is also important in making the most out of...
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