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International Business Research Project

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Introduction

Healthy Foods, Inc., a company that specializes in health food grocery stores, wants to expand their stores into a different country. They have hired you to research a country and identify potential areas of cultural and political differences that may create conflicts between Americans and foreign business people. In addition, you must present to their Board of Directors your recommendations for whether or not your country of choice is a good place in which to expand.

Step 1: Select a country and form a group of up to four people.

Countries to choose from:

Argentina

Denmark

Ireland

Peru

South Korea

Australia

Egypt

Israel

Philippines

Spain

Austria

France

Italy

Poland

Sweden

Belgium

Germany

Japan

Portugal

Switzerland

Brazil

Hong Kong

Jordan

Russia

Taiwan

Canada

India

Malaysia

Saudi Arabia

Thailand

Chile

Indonesia

Mexico

Singapore

Turkey

Columbia

Yemen

Netherlands

South Africa

Venezuela

Step 2: Research the country of interest.

Determine the business issues pertaining to the following criteria:

  1. Time (Punctuality for social and business meetings)​
  2. Monetary denomination (What is it and what is the current exchange rate to the U.S. Dollar?)
  3. Important holidays (When and why?)
  4. Work week (Days and hours)

5.  Cultural influences on business: Consider taboos, class distinctions, greetings, language, direct and indirect communication, high vs low context cultures, nonverbal communication, negotiations, religion influence, etc).

6.  Political influences on business (Consider type of political system, political risk, trade barriers, potential bribery, etc.)

Sections 5 and 6 are the most important sections of the manual! Spend your time and energy researching, writing, and analyzing these issues in the most depth.

Step 3: Business Manual

Design a short "How to do Business in "________________" manual for American Business people. This document should incorporate the above business issues into a concise, easy to read manual that is professional and written in a business context. Be creative! Use pictures! Make it visually interesting! Be sure to include a "References" page at the end of the manual. To add credibility, create your manual in a “book format” and incorporate a bar code on the back cover and quotes from famous people.

The Rules:

Minimum length for the manual (Step 3): Five pages. (8.5 x 11 paper)

Maximum length for the manual (Step 3): Seven pages. (8.5 x 11 paper)

The Manual (_____/160 Points)

Is the project written in a business context?

Was your project grounded in various types of research?

Would a businessperson be engaged by your message and learn valuable lessons?

Time, Monetary Denomination, Holidays, Work week & Background:


Cultural Influences on BusinessConsider taboos, class distinctions, greetings, language, direct and indirect communication, high vs low context cultures, nonverbal communication, negotiations, religion influence, etc).


Political Influences on Business(Consider type of political system, political risk, and trade barriers)

Step 4: Personal Adaptations and Reflections

Discuss the 3 MOST difficult adjustments YOU would have to make to do business in this country. Your comments should be original, detailed and achievable. Each group member must do this portion of the project individually.

Maximum length for the "adjustments" (Step 4): Two pages. (8.5 x 11 paper)

Three Most Difficult Adjustments (____/90)

Did you critically analyze your personality and predispositions and make reasonable adjustments?

Step 5: Written Analysis & Oral Presentation - Findings and Recommendations

After completing your research and business manual, you will create a written analysis of whether or not Healthy Foods, Inc. should expand to your country and then present your findings and recommendations to the Board of Directors (Mrs. Townsend, Ms. McLeod, and the class). 

Written Analysis:

  • Your written analysis should be 1 to 2 pages long (not including the Works Cited page).
  • It should cite sources in MLA format and have a Works Cited page at the end.
  • The analysis and presentation should include the implications of the four factors of the International Business Environment (see page 16 in your textbook) of having Healthy Foods, Inc. in a foreign country.  

​Presentation:

  • You will need to create an engaging presentation using some type of visual presentation (PowerPoint, Prezi, or other presentation app). Be creative, use pictures, video, and more to create a sophisticated presentation that informs and analyzes the pros and cons of doing business in your selected country. Your presentation should finish with your clear and well supported recommendation for whether or not your company should expand to your selected country.

Findings and Recommendations Oral and Written Presentation (_____/100 Points)

The rubric for the presentation will be provided to you at a later date.

International Business & Information Literacy Standards and Outcomes

International Business Standards and Outcomes 

Understand how different countries make economic decisions.

Understand how cultures and subcultures influence business.

Describe major reactions to cultural differences.

Discuss the impact political developments have on international business.

Explain how political risk can disrupt selling and buying across borders.

Information Literacy Standards and Outcomes 

1.1.4 Find, evaluate, and select appropriate sources to answer questions.

2.1.2 Organize knowledge so that it is useful.

2.1.3 Use strategies to draw conclusions from information and apply knowledge to curricular areas, real world situations, and further investigations.

2.1.4 Use technology and other information tools to analyze and organize information.

2.1.6 Use the writing process, media and visual literacy, and technology skills to create products that express new understandings.

2.2.3 Employ a critical stance in drawing conclusions by demonstrating that the pattern of evidence leads to a decision or conclusion.

2.2.4 Demonstrate personal productivity by completing products to express learning.

3.1.3 Use writing and speaking skills to communicate new understandings effectively.

3.1.4 Use technology and other information tools to organize and display knowledge and understanding in ways that others can view, use, and assess.

3.3.4 Create products that apply to authentic, real-world contexts.

3.4.2 Assess the quality and effectiveness of the learning product.

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