International business lessons from YouTube

This week: doing business across borders. Our tutors are Stephen Merchant, Bill Murray, and the Terminator.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

When embarking on international business, there are hundreds of practical hurdles to overcome, from cultural differences to legal minefields. If, like Ricky Gervais’ agent in Extras, you're struggling to do the maths involved in understanding time zones, it's probably not worth the effort.

Working in a foreign environment can be incredibly confusing. For the perfect depiction, look no further than Sofia Coppola’s Lost In Translation. Here Bill Murray finds that, in Japan, even a simple instruction like ‘turn to the left’ can become a baffling experience.

When entering a foreign market, there are bound to be cultural issues. But if you are sure of your strengths and clear on your goals, there is no reason why you can’t come out on top. In that sense it’s similar to being the Terminator, turning up to a biker bar naked.

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