The cost of cultural misunderstanding in one video and two and one half minutes.
This little story illustrates just one fundamental difference in how conflict is resolved in the American and in the German business contexts. Let’s try to estimate that threat to success. Let’s put some numbers on it:
Conflict Not Resolved
You know your organization. Think of a recent major conflict either within the organization or between it and another organization. Or imagine such a conflict. What would be the negative finanical impact if the conflict goes unresolved – in dollars or in euros?
Another calculation. What would occur if a resolution to the major conflict above was considered by the one side to be unjust, unworkable, or simply bad for the company? Surely they would do everything in their power to have the resolution overturned, to fight it secretly, or to ignore it. What would any of those scenarios cost the organization – in dollars or in euros?
Let’s assume again that the one side considers the resolution to be unjust, unworkable, or simply bad for the company. But they are forced to live with it, and it impacts negatively motivation, productivity, and the willingness to collaborate across the Atlantic.