Working and dealing with the Croats

Module 1 : Understanding cultural differences

1. Intercultural awareness, the key to success in international business

  • Taking stock of one's own cultural baggage
  • The basics of effective intercultural management
  • Identifying and going beyond cultural stereotypes

2. Key aspects of Croatian culture

  • A nation situated at the gateway to Europe, between the Balkans and the Mediterranean
  • The impact of the Yugoslav conflict
  • A multiethnic society
  • A booming economy, currently in a state of transition

3. The impact of values and behaviour patterns on professional dealings and relationships

  • The importance of family and patriarchal values
  • The emancipation of Croatian women
  • Pride in one’s identity and a sense of honour
  • A class based, status-centric society
  • A flexible view of time
  • Cynicism and irony
  • Appearances and reality

4. The Croatian corporate world

  • The persistence of Soviet-style traditions
  • A hierarchical and conservative organisational structure
  • Fraud and corruption
  • Favouritism and privileges

Module 2 : Succeeding in work with the Croats

1. Effective communication with the Croats

  • Deciphering indirect communication
  • The importance of networking
  • A sacred personal space
  • The specific features of the Croatian language

2. Adapting your working methods

  • Building trust and confidence: patience, adaptability, flexibility
  • Effective management: experience, detachment and charisma.
  • Carefully scheduling deadlines in order to maximize productivity
  • Avoiding jealousy and rumour-mongering
  • Encouraging people to be responsible for their actions and actively seeking feedback
  • Pitfalls to be avoided

3. Successful meetings and negotiations with the Croats

  • Formality and discipline
  • Gaining respect and generating interest
  • Time, priority and deadline management
  • Written contracts, their interpretation and implications
  • Organising the post-negotiation phase

4. Final handy tips

  • Caution, patience and humility
  • Protocol and etiquette
  • Social standards, gifts, business cards, dress code
  • Sensitive subjects: politics, history, religion
  • Humour: a double-edged sword

Working and dealing with the Croats

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