SIEM / Spaces of International Economy and Management

Events & Conferences

Contact information

Professor Dr. Rolf D. Schlunze

Humboldt University of Berlin, Department of Economic Geography / Ritsumeikan University, College of Business Administration

Manager training events

Short report about the IBC Workshop for collaborative development with international managers

During a workshop which was held at Ritsumeikan Epoch 21 at 14th November 2009 five international managers reflected together with R+ students about challenges how to build good communication strategies overcoming various workplace problems. The workshop had three structural elements: 1. Intercultural encounters - advertising challenges of international business communication, 2. intercultural training with open ended role plays and 3. a guided discussion about how communication problems can be solved. Twenty-nine students participated in the workshop on intercultural business communication investigating options for collaborative development in international human resource management. All students found that they gained idea after participating in the workshop that might help them to achieve intercultural competence. They understood that a successful manager needs to become a good communicator, a good negotiator, and a good networker as well. They learnt from the professional managers about how to create intercultural synergy by collaborative development. An international student concluded that the well organized workshop provided a lab to learn, a lab for our future business life!

Detailed report about to IBC Workshop for collaborative development between international managers and students of international business administration

Prof. Rolf D. Schlunze (Ritsumeikan Univ.), Will Baber (Kyoto Univ.) and Claas Riese (Aspire Communications) organized a workshop entitled "Aspire International Business Communication - Workshop for collaborative development between managers and students of international business administration".
To give some background information: research showed that international managers often have powerful ideas and are eager to transfer their strategic intent to their local subordinates. However, to do so successfully much learning about the local business culture often is needed but not always achieved. On the other side, our students of international business administration do have a need to learn about those international managers' visions and experiences in purpose to prepare for their working life in an international workplace. Thus, the idea of the workshop was to work commonly on new solutions promoting successful intercultural business communication. The entire workshop was held in English. Students with a good command in English studying International Business participated. Five international managers have been invited as guest speakers, among them Claas Riese (ASPIRE COMMUNICATIONS), Andreas Stange (TUV-SUD), Nicolas Bocqet (DESOUTTER), Takashi Kasagami and Charles Vacher, (Pacific Financial Partners, LLC). They described their experiences in the intercultural workplace. They indicated specific communication problems. Together with our students they reflected about the challenge to build good communication strategies overcoming various problems during the workshop which was held at Ritsumeikan Epoch 21 at 14th November 2009. The workshop had three structural elements: 1. Intercultural encounters - advertising challenges of international business communication, 2. intercultural training with open ended role plays and 3. a guided discussion about how communication problems can be solved. 29 students participated in the workshop on intercultural business communication investigating options for collaborative development in international human resource management.
Benoit Couvois, a student from France, commented the workshop as an impressive day, a lab to learn, a lab to our future business life! A Chinese student state that it was valuable and will be useful for her future career. A Korean student confessed that he learned about a western-style workshop enjoying for the first time doing a role play! The Japanese student praised that it was very magnificent experience having so many difference nationalities gathered in the workshop.

Asking the students if they believe that they have got an idea after participating in the workshop that might help them to achieve intercultural competence, 24 students clearly stated "Yes". They gave such reasons as follows: Ms. Li emphasized that she learnt that one needs to understand each other's culture in purpose to conduct business smoothly. Ms. Feiling said that she good experience of intercultural communication each and obtained many useful things that might help her to make this achievement. A German student, Nicole Bassler, expressed that she learned how theory is transferred into real life. A Korean student, Sung Jing, mentioned that he learned how to negotiate to other people during the workshop. The Japanese student, Aya Emi, noticed that after listening to the international managers` talk, she learned that understanding different cultures is always important. A French student became confident to attempt a career in Japan.

After the workshop students indicated what makes foremost a successful manager. Twenty one believed that a successful manager needs to become a good communicator. They gave following reasons: Ms. Maeda found that communication is key of successful management. A Korean student said "I think successful manager are sure good communicators, they negotiate to workers and motivate them to do business efficiently". A Danish student, Jakob, added that communication becomes important especially in a culture different to your own. Benoit: Concerning intercultural management that is nothing more compared with communication, it is the basic of everything else in the business world so without it, noting is really possible. Si Feiling found that setting up successful network is only possible with appropriate communication. Interestingly, Ms. Li believes that a successful manager is all of them: a good communicator, good negotiator, and a good networker. He or she should combine these qualities in a preferable way!
We asked the students "Do you believe that collective development can help to create intercultural synergy?" Twenty-two stated "Yes". A Japanese student found that people who need to adjust to particular situations, might create a collective development it not always synergy. Another Japanese student found that collaborative development needs communication and synergy can be an outcome of this communication. A French student indicated that he learnt from the interview with Mr. Kasagami and Mr. Vacher that two different people who develop their skill together and work closely together can create amazing synergy. Ms. Feiling state that she learnt from the guest speakers explaining about their intercultural synergy, a collaborative development usually works towards very good solutions.