The important part is that we have established a relationship, then we can conduct business : Cultural conflicts and dilemmas in international business
Abstract: Recent literature state that the relationship between buyers and sellers has gained more and more importance in business-to-business segments. The distribution of products may even end up in the shadow of these important relationships. The statement, of increased need for relationship marketing, is proven more tangible in cross-border interactions and communications. Managers who are maintaining and establishing international accounts have to acknowledge cultural differences, norms and preferences when keeping their international key accounts satisfaction. However, the practice around how cultural diversity implement the relationship process is something that could be further explored. Therefore, the purpose of this thesis is to explore cultural conflicts and dilemmas in manager’s relations with international key accounts.The thesis has a phenomenological approach, which aims at exploring personal business experiences of managers in practice. Thus, the aim is not to make general assumptions about either KAM, RM or business culture. The thesis is developed through five separate interviews with managers of different gender, practice and targeted customer culture. We mainly used Hofstede's (2017) framework when analyzing and discussing the implication of business culture on international relationships. Several strategies, both personal and business oriented, where noticed as a result of international and intercultural business collaborations. The result shows how complex the subject of business culture is and how limitations of managing cultural diversity can lead to conflicts and dilemmas.
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