English 搜索网 论坛 原文阅读 在线翻译
当前位置: 大学英语 > 新视野大学英语第三版第四册课文翻译和录音

Unit 5 Text B Culture makes the business world go round翻译,原文和录音

[2018年11月6日] 来源:新视野大学英语Unit 5 编辑:给力英语网   字号 [] [] []  

Culture makes the business world go round


文化推动商业世界的运转


1 Edward Hall, a leader in the field of intercultural studies, famously said: "The single greatest barrier to business success is the one erected by culture." Can cultural differences have as big an impact on international business ventures as financial planning and visionary leadership? The surprising answer is: Yes!


爱德华·霍尔是跨文化研究领域的著名学者。他曾说过一句名言:“商业成功的最大障碍是由文化竖立的障碍。”对国际企业来说,文化差异难道真的和财务规划及前瞻性领导有着同样大的影响吗?答案是出人意料的:的确如此!


2 A good example is the role of relationships in business dealings. While relationships play only a minor role in US business culture, they play a major role in Asian, African, and Middle Eastern countries. In these cultures, in varying degrees, relationship building is like a torch that lights and guides the way for business to occur.


一个很好的例子,人际关系在生意往来中所起的作用。尽管人际关系在美国商业文化中作用不大,但在亚洲、非洲及中东国家却十分重要。在这些文化中,人际关系的经营在不同程度上就好像是照亮和引导生意征程的火炬。


3 Let's take the example of Kevin Johnston, a senior vice-president of a US company specializing in hospitality management. Kevin was put in charge of finalizing a merger with a company in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Virtually all of the complicated negotiations had been completed. What remained was a 3-day trip to the UAE for face-to-face meetings between the partners to sign the paperwork and close the deal.


让我们以美国一家酒店管理公司高级副总裁凯文·约翰斯顿的故事为例说明。凯文被指派负责敲定与阿拉伯联合酋长国(阿联酋)一家公司的合并事宜。几乎所有复杂的谈判均已完成,剩下的就是花三天时间前往阿联酋与对方面谈,以签署协议文件并完成整个交易。


4 Kevin was determined that nothing would detain him from succeeding. He sent out a memorandum across his company, enthusiastically describing the planned merger with the UAE partners. Having compiled all the necessary documents and graphs, with every figure and decimal in place, and having prepared a thorough exposition certifying the quality of his company, he packed his briefcase and headed for the UAE.


凯文坚信,任何事情都不会阻碍他此行成功完成任务。他给公司上下发了一份备忘录,热情洋溢地描述了与阿联酋方面的这一合并计划。在他整理好了所有必备的文件和乃至数据及小数点都精确到位的各种图表,并准备了一份证明公司资质的详尽说明后,他就装好了公文包,奔赴阿联酋。


5 Kevin arrived in the UAE excited to seal the deal. He was treated with extraordinary hospitality: an elaborate hotel, blue ribbon foods, elegant convertibles with drivers to tour the city, a parade of entertainment, and beautiful gifts to commemorate the visit. He tried repeatedly to bring out his files, open the conversation and get down to business. But, surprisingly, for the three days he spent in the UAE, none of his Emirate colleagues seemed ready to hear his financial briefing. Each time Kevin tried to speak about the deal, his prospective partners seemed to "kidnap" the conversation, diverting it to other topics. They would inquire about his health, his family or his views on education and other important issues.


凯文到了阿联酋,对于此行来完成这项交易感到兴奋无比。他受到了超规格的殷勤接待:奢华的宾馆、一流的佳肴、配有专职司机的优雅的敞篷车带他游览全城、接连不断的娱乐活动、精美的纪念品。他多次试图取出带来的文件资料,想打开话题谈生意,但奇怪的是,在他停留的三天里,阿联酋的同仁们却好像没有一个人愿意听他准备的财务情况简介。每当凯文试图谈及交易时,有望成为合作伙伴的对方似乎总是“绑架”谈话内容,岔开话题。他们会转而询问他的健康、他的家人,或他对教育和其他重要问题的看法。


6 Upon leaving the UAE, Kevin felt exasperated and defeated. He hadn't been able to receive the thorough interrogation of the materials for which he had so carefully prepared. His progress toward closing the deal was exactly where it was when he left the US: nil.


离开阿联酋时,凯文感到既恼火又丧气。对于自己精心准备的材料,他根本就无法获得对方的详细询问。至于完成这项交易的计划,则与他离开美国时毫无二致:零进展。

7 The above case is a classic example of how a friction between different cultural expectations causes delay that, if not handled appropriately, will bring the deal to an abrupt end and leave both sides reeling. The substantial loss of revenue can never be refunded and can leave a struggling company falling without a parachute.


上述例子很经典,它说明了不同文化期望值之间的冲突会如何导致延误。这种延误若未能恰当处理的话,就会使一笔生意戛然中断,让双方都不知所措。所造成的巨大的收入损失永远无法弥补,甚至还会让一家在困境中挣扎的公司突然倒闭,就像没用降落伞从高空坠落一样,毫无缓冲。


8 Kevin made the mistake of assuming that the "certifications" involved in sealing the deal were in his briefcase. He charged into the meetings like a bull. For many cultures, a person's certifications are established not only by their accomplishments, their education and abilities, but also by more personal connections. In this case, the UAE partners wanted to know if Kevin was a good man, a family man, a trustworthy man. This type of rating establishes a trusting relationship for them. Had Kevin patiently taken the time to establish relationships, he would likely have been asked to share his carefully prepared documents and have closed the deal.


凯文错误地以为,生意成交只要靠自己公文包中的各种证明文件就行。他风风火火地去参加会谈,就像一头误打误撞的公牛。但对于很多文化来说,一个人确立自己的资质不仅要靠业绩、教育背景或个人能力,而且要靠更多的人际交往。在这一例子中,阿联酋合作伙伴很想知道的是,凯文是不是个好人,是不是个顾家和值得信赖的人。对他们而言,这种评判能够确立双方之间的信任关系。如果凯文当初能够花些时间耐心地去经营一下双方关系的话,他们也许就会让他介绍一下精心准备的材料并完成交易了。


9 Sociologists agree that another key aspect influencing global business is the concept of face. Cross-cultural differences in the way we save face impact our perceptions of trust and respect, which in turn impact our relationships and group cohesion.


社会学家一致认为,影响国际商务的另一关键因素是“面子”。在“顾面子”的方式上,跨文化差异会影响我们对信任和尊重的看法,而这种看法反过来又会影响人们之间的关系和团队凝聚力。


10 Take the example of Ann, a US manager who took a reactionary approach to cultural differences. Ann thought being a nominee for the leadership position with a sales team based in Singapore was a climax of her career. Ann tried to establish a working relationship with each team member. After a few weeks of working on team unification and solidarity, presenting guidelines, and offering sales advice, she carefully compartmentalized goals for each member of the sales team.


以一位叫安的美国经理为例。安对文化差异采取了一种保守策略。她被提名为一个设于新加坡的销售团队的领导,她将此看作自己事业的一个顶峰。安努力和每一位团队成员都建立良好的工作关系。她花了数周时间致力于建立团队的统一性与凝聚力、介绍工作原则、提出销售建议,之后她为销售团队的每位成员精心设定了分块目标。


11 Later, when the team convened face-to-face for their first quarterly review meeting, Ann, after praising a Chinese team member, boldly criticized and questioned a Korean, trying to extract the exact reason why he was lagging so far behind on his goals. The meeting immediately lost its groove. The entire group became solemn and, for the rest of the meeting, remained polite but largely mute.


过了一段时间,在团队举行的面对面的首次季度工作总结例会上,安称赞了一位中国成员,而后毫不留情地批评并质询了一位韩国成员,试图找出他比别人落后许多的确切原因。会议立刻偏离了常规程序。整个团队变得严肃沉闷,而且在会议剩下的时间里,虽然大家都谦恭有礼,但大多数时候却沉默不言。


12 Clearly, Ann was not familiar with the concept of saving face in other cultures. In US culture, saving face exists — but only minimally, and tactful but straightforward speech is highly valued. US managers routinely speak freely about someone else's accomplishments or failures in open, public settings, such as during meetings. This is different in Asian cultures. Singling out an individual due to praise or criticism, a daily habit amongst American managers, may cause Asians to become uncomfortable or deeply embarrassed.


显然,安对其他文化中“顾面子”这一概念并不熟悉。在美国文化中,的确也存在着“顾面子”一说,但其影响微乎其微。更受推崇的是机智老练而又直截了当的谈话。美国经理人惯常于在公共场合,如在会议上,自由谈论其他人的成就或败绩。这和亚洲文化有所不同。对美国经理人来说,把某人单独挑出来予以夸奖或批评是日常性的做法,但对亚洲人来说,这样做会使他们觉得不自在或甚为尴尬。


13 Ann needs to consider more culturally appropriate ways to support and motivate her team. Providing feedback, especially negative feedback, in more private settings will be helpful. Most of all, she should work on giving more courteous and supportive praise and encouragement, which will help move toward the unification and cohesion that high functioning teams need in order to be successful.


安需要考虑的是,要采取在文化上更加恰当的方式来支持和激发她的团队。如果要给成员提反馈意见,尤其是负面意见的话,那么在私人场合进行会更有帮助。最为重要的是,她应该努力给出一些更加客气、更具支持性的赞扬和鼓励,这样才能使团队更加团结,更加具有凝聚力,而这也是一个高效运作的团队取得成功所必需的。


14 Around the world, deeper structures such as relationship building and face saving are embedded in the values, beliefs and behavior of a culture. They are much harder to understand than the glossary of terms in any culture's language phrase book. The advice is: Always ask for clarification and seek new insights. For business success, it is essential to learn to mediate these deeper cultural differences. Though it may be a little complicated to incorporate them into your way of thinking and communicating, it is well worth the effort!


在世界各地,人际关系经营及颜面顾及这类更深层次的文化结构都是根植于该文化所具有的价值观、信仰和行为之中的。它们比任何一种文化的词语汇编里所列出的术语都更难理解。我的建议是:随时向对方询问,以得到一个明晰的解释和新的理解。为了取得商业成功,学会协调这些更深层次的文化差异是极其重要的。尽管将它们融入自己的思维方式和人际交往有点复杂,但这样的努力是非常值得的!