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Appreciating cultural differences at TESA


How can we make the most of internationalization and utilize the strengths different cultures offer?

We just teamed up on a transformation project at TESA, an international, family-owned business based in Milan. Its subsidiary CGT became the Caterpillar dealer for northern Italy in 1934 and in 2010 became the sole dealer for the whole country. In 1990 services were started in the Balkans region, and recently they became active in Spain and Portugal.

Working with a Mediterranean international company reminded us of how prominent the Anglo-American culture in business is. It caused us to write about themes such as left-brain dominance and the need for more creative intelligence and re-humanizing organizations. However, in Mediterranean cultures, and certainly in family owned companies, empathy and building human relations are often strengths rather than weaknesses. Wouldn’t it be great if we could build international organizations that kept the best of all worlds?

Are you profiting from the cultural diversity in your organization? Have you been able to keep the advantages of the individual cultures in your company culture?

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