Bulletin description: "Development of intercultural negotiating skills through cases involving protagonists, organizational contexts, and situations."
Semester: Fall 2008
Instructor: Dr. Sally Baack
Project work: My most interesting project work included being on a team with three other students, and we were tasked with researching how negotiations are done in China, and then presenting highlights to the class. More specifically we:
Selected overriding cultural and historical factors that were especially relevant to the task of business negotiations in China
Looked at prevailing protocols and gender-based considerations that were significant to negotiating in China
Explored characteristics of the purposes of language that are important for negotiations
Analyzed the role of relationships in the context of business negotiations in China
A more nerve-wracking (but interesting!) project involved being on a team with five other students. We represented various German businesspeople and government officials. My role was as a representative of the German Ministry of Economics. We were tasked with being effective German negotiators as we went up against a group of seven Brazilian counterparts to settle a sugar contract dispute. I think we were fairly effective negotiators because the preparation prior to the negotiation was fairly rigorous. We studied how Germans and Brazilians negotiated, explored the underlying interests of both sides, and anticipated how the individual members of the Brazilian team would approach the negotiation. Finally, we considered how cross-cultural factors would be woven into the whole process.
I like to think that the German team won the negotiation, although the idea was probably to arrive at an agreement that satisfied the interests of both parties. :)