Working Across Cultures

AIChE Webinar
Originally delivered May 4, 2011

This webinar provides guidelines for operating successfully in different cultural settings, with an emphasis on project management. It distinguishes rule-based from relationship-based cultures and shows how these two types of cultural systems take very different approaches to getting things done.

Specific topics include employee supervision and concepts of authority; attitudes toward time and schedules; negotiation and contracts; cross-cultural communication; and corruption and cross-cultural ethics. An underlying theme is that every culture has a logic of its own, and recognizing this logic is a key to cross-cultural success. In particular, a culture is shaped to a large degree by mechanisms it has developed for dealing with stress, uncertainty, and setbacks. These not only provide clues to how the culture works, but they are valuable tools for dealing with uncertainty and obstacles in the local setting. A large number of real-world examples are used to illustrate the ideas, many of them from the presenter's own experience.

Who will benefit: Engineers who manage international projects, work in countries other than their own, or interact with persons from different cultural backgrounds.

Professional Development Hours
1.0 PDHs
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Professor John Hooker

John Hooker is Holleran Professor of Business Ethics and Social Responsibility, and Professor of Operations Research, at the Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University.  He is also part-time Visiting Professor at London School of Economics, 2009-2011.  His research and teaching interests include operations research, international business ethics, and cross-cultural issues.  He has published over 130 articles, five books, and five edited volumes in these fields, including his book Working Across Cultures.  He has lived and worked in Australia, China, Denmark, India, Qatar, Turkey...

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