Offshore offices – particularly in Asian countries – are a common and often essential part of many Western organizations. Cultural differences between home and satellite offices might be subtle; however, for successful collaboration and a prosperous work climate, a good understanding of these differences is vital. So how can companies bridge the cultural gap?
The concept of the offshore office is nothing new within the world of business. As long as inter-regional or inter-continental commerce have existed, traders and companies have invested in offshore representation. While the notion of overseas staff has been a constant, one thing that has changed has been the purpose and location of that staffing. For centuries, offshore offices were either focused on establishing and broadening a company’s foreign sales potential or managing and processing raw resources at the source, before importing the finished or semi-finished product to Western markets.
All this changed with the globalization of technology, standardized education and the growth of English as the commercial and technological lingua franca. Since the 1980s, a new and increasingly ubiquitous offshore office has developed. This office is neither a sales hub nor a warehouse or factory, ...
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