Working with Americans.
IN THIS SUMMARY
In 2002, Felix Rohatyn (American businessman and investment banker), proclaimed that four and a half million Americans were working for European companies and that approximately the same number of Europeans were employed by American companies. It is a situation that authors Stewart-Allen and Denslow believe provides (now more than ever) too many chances for conflict, confusion, and missed opportunities. There are entirely too many differences between American business and that of the rest of the world. These differences in culture, values, etiquette, and "common" business language make "getting on with it," and doing business as usual, highly ineffective. Thus, Working with Americans provides vital information that will give European businesses that have, or would like to have, American partners, employees, colleagues, or clients an understanding of, and appreciation for, the diversity and complexity of the American business environment. It not only illuminates why Americans think and operate as they do, it also provides clear guidelines on how to be effective in playing to these preferences and business practices so as to build more effective and profitable relationships. Just as importantly, the detailed analysis also shows American businesses how they look to the world abroad, providing them with invaluable insights into building more effective and profitable relationships, both "over here and over there. "Thus, they demonstrate that such notions as change can be good, experimentation is encouraged, hard work is valued, and success depends on individual effort (and can be displayed), form the basis for the strong entrepreneurial attitudes that are fundamental to the U.S. economy. Situational analyses show that, despite these shared values, American society is still varied and complex, with such issues as age, education, income, values, experience, and location (rural, urban, suburban) influencing attitudes, employment, and lifestyle. his view of the business of business in America gives practical weight to Max Weber's observation that "if we learn anything from the history of economic development is that culture makes almost all the difference." So, what we learn is that though the U.S. is very young, with little history in comparison to other countries, it does indeed have a history-one that has enormous influence on leadership competencies, the basic components of organizational culture, the nature of teamwork, on financial management principles, communications, information, and strategic thinking.