Cross-Cultural Training : A Study on the use and Attitudes of Cross-Cultural Training in a Swedish Multinational Small and Medium Enterprise

University essay from Luleå tekniska universitet/Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle; Luleå tekniska universitet/Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle

Abstract: Globalization is unsealing national boundaries and cross-cultural interactions are becoming a natural part of modern business. Many enterprises are going international, as a result, there is an increasing need of sending employees, so called expatriates, abroad. Operating in a foreign market require certain knowledge. Adjustment may be a struggle and many expatriates shorten their assignment early because of this. A cancelled expatriate project harms both the individual and the organization and literature suggests that cross-cultural training (CCT) could be used to facilitate adjustment. Research on CCT has mainly been focusing on large multinationals, hence, there is a lack of research on the subject in small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Addressing this gap, this study contributes to existing research by providing a deeper understanding of how CCT can be used in SMEs and the attitudes toward it. To begin with, a literature review is presented. Following, a case study in a Swedish Multinational SME was done, including four semi-structured interviews with expatriates and a HR-manager, which is presented subsequently. The interviews covered topics regarding how the company works with cross-cultural training and personal impressions of expatriate projects. General findings of this study are that they implement abstracts of CCT activities and the attitudes toward CCT are generally positive. Expatriate projects are successful and the case company expresses a desire to implement CCT further.

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