Introduction—The Global Perspective

“Think global, act local,” became the business mantra of the end of the twentieth century. And it is firmly in place as the strategy for success in the twenty-first. The simplicity of the phrase, however, can lure the unsuspecting into simple-minded interpretations.

Communication is key. But it must be real communication—not just the familiar cookbook do’s and don’ts, such as

Don’t show the soles of your shoes in Saudi Arabia.

In Japan, don’t shake hands after putting something in your back pocket.

Always finish the bottle of vodka when a Russian begins to toast you.

Don’t discuss business with a Mexican on the first business meeting.

These bits of advice are interesting to read and think about, but when ...

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