Teacher’s guide

Case 10: The Football Match, Discussion

Two cultural differences played a role here.

1. Like many hierarchical, class-conscious Brits, Reginald Tipton-Jones had a low opinion of people who like football as opposed to polo, tennis and croquet. Before agreeing to sign a long-term contract, the British importer invited Bent Nielsen to his luxury home in order to find out how much he and the Dane had in common. Unfortunately, egalitarian Nielsen was unaware that like many upper-class Brits, Tipton-Jones had a low opinion of people who like football. The Dane was therefore surprised when his potential partner lost interest in doing business with him.

2. Brits tend to be somewhat more relationship-focused than Danes, And for RF business people like Tipton-Jones, sharing similar values, attitudes and interests is often more important than it is for their deal-focused counterparts.