Understanding Russian business culture
If you work with Russia, you need cultural understanding! Russian business culture is in many ways distinctly different from Western business culture. In addition the country is constantly changing and the business culture 2 or 5 years ago has changed today.
Not so long ago, it was a central part of Russian business culture to meet over a glass of vodka (or two). For obvious reasons this habit has stopped among serious business people. But the need to informal trust-building events is still important. A common ting in most countries with a high corruption.
What do we do?
The training will be based on the specific needs and challenges in your company, but will always contain the basic tools of cultural understanding.
Typically, we come across the following areas:
- What do you need to know, that you do not know? And how do you get this knowledge?
- Country-specific cultural differences between Russia and the rest of the world.
- How do you work in a country with high corruption?
- What does it mean that power distance is different from what you are used to?
- How do you monitor local employees and collaborators? And why can’t you just do as in the mother company?
- What impact does it have that the gender roles are different? How does it work when you are a
- man? And when you are a woman?
Cultural training – for Russians
It has been a must for Russians to try understanding foreign business partners, colleagues or managers since 1991.
One of the most difficult tasks has been to understand and live with the fact that foreigners do not understand Russians.
Russians have dealt with this and made changes faster than any other countries in the world. But sometime problems have been accepted as unsolvebal due to “Cultural differences”, “this is Russia” or “human factors”, and addressing the problems often ends up in fruitless discussions on which culture is the “right” one. The result is that the organisations faces a lower efficiency.
For almost 20 years I have worked with cultural awareness in Russia and I experience that the importance of this subject has never been higher. But upgrading individual or groups of only Russians on cultural awareness has proven to be surprisingly effective. And I have been working on different projects training staff on all levels, with very satisfactory result. Have a look here.
What do we do?
Normally its one days training, focusing on your specific needs, using cases you and your staff can relate to.
- What is cultural awareness, and why it is important do develop cultural intelligent?
- Which specific challenges do Russians have when it come to cultural awareness?
- When and why do foreigners not understand Russians, and what to do about it?
- How do you recognise if a person is cultural intelligent, and able to work in an international sphere.
- What are the steps to become cultural intelligent?
The training is a mix between lectures and practical exercises.
Individual coaching and counseling is an effective tool for training and transferring knowledge about cultural intelligence. And often this can be done with very few sessions. Companies often choose to train employees on executive levels, and this is what I normally do. But I have experience working with people on all levels, and with many different nationalities. For information on how I work with Russians individually, have a look here.
Training on both sides of the border
Making cultural training for both the headquarter and the local site is absolutely the most effective way to minimize the cultural misunderstandings and optimize the communication between the countries.
Intercultural training for companies is done in close cooperation with C3 Consulting.
C3 Consulting is one of the leading companies within this field in Denmark, and has made training worldwide for many years. They have developed some efficient models for professional cultural understanding, and I have together with them, trained companies of all sizes and with all degrees of experience in the Russian market. Both for those with experience back from the Soviet era and companies who never have set foot in Russia before they were given training.