For companies that have to deal with developing countries, especially African countries and India, I offer consultancy and advice in intercultural management, negotiations and project/business design. Many times good willing entrepreneurs who invest in Africa or India are confronted with surprises and difficulties they would least have expected. How to anticipate them? How to make the most of it if it is not possible to operate as initially expected?
Let’s mention some of the issues. In establishing a new business in a country with high unemployment rates, it is not possible to count on a well-trained workforce entering the factory. If young people have been jobless for a long time a disciplined working rhythm during eight hours a day cannot be expected. To achieve the required level of production for being competitive on the market may be problematic, while at the same time the workforce may have the impression that somebody is getting rich from them already. What to do? Most companies in Africa and India are run with high power distance and high difference in status, the manager being a somewhat paternalistic authority within the factory. Well-meaning Western managers may want to make a good impression by treating the workforce on an equal footing. But in doing so to their disappointment they might experience they are not taken seriously anymore. How to be in authority and still create an atmosphere of openness? How can people feel safe enough to express their own judgment, while still being committed and responsible on the job? Another example: unexpectedly tribal factions and conflicts may pop up in the workshop. People might get irritated because the language of just one ethnic group dominates. How to solve the issue? What kind of training is required? What on the job training strategies are available? How can trust and loyalty be built among the workers but also between management and workers?
For the problems mentioned there are no easy and ready-made solutions. But it is important to be aware of them and to anticipate them. Different consultancy options are available: feedback on a business plan, lectures on the theory of intercultural management, case studies and role games for practical education and discussion, or just a feedback session on ongoing business.
Training modules and workshops are tailored to the wishes of the customer. Prices a matter of negotiation and agreement.