Dating a "Young Woman"

It is human nature to judge people by their looks and behavior without considering their backgrounds. However, each of us goes through several different experiences that form our personal history. These experiences shape the way we think and behave throughout the years. When we are young, we like to try new things. Our behavior often lacks consistency. We try to find our way with a bit of a rebellious attitude. Then we start to mature, develop our own principles and ways of doing things while harmonizing with the people we interact with. Countries follow the same pattern with their economies and cultures. This mix forms their business culture. There are countries that have a long history of operating in the international trade arena with their liberal economies. Their systems, principles and infrastructures are shaped and established based on these experiences. As firstcomers, or “superiors” (despite some major adjustments we are going through nowadays) they shape the main structure and set the rules in their respected fields of power - ranging from banking to oil. Then you have the new- comers, the “so-called” emerging ones. They behave exactly like youngsters, trying to find their own way among the adults who keep on telling them what is right and what is wrong and letting them play only if the youngsters play by their rules. The recent crisis, coupled with the rising power of the new “economy”, changed this balance a bit and the youngsters raised their voices. However, the general rules of doing business are more or less the same, as are the cultural behavior of countries. Foreign businesspeople from established countries—like adults looking at youngsters—often tend to ignore the age and the cultural background of Turkey when they make harsh judgments about the different ways of doing business in this country. The Turkish economy was semi-liberalized in 1984 and has been liberalizing since then. One should therefore always keep in mind that one is dealing with a “young” liberal business culture trying to figure out her own way between the traditions of her parents (developed during the closed-economy years) and her new liberal friends (whom she likes to hang out with) with- out getting hurt. You cannot expect her to behave according to their impositions. In fact, if you have a positive and receptive approach, you might even discover new ways of doing business and man- aging others. As a young lady, she is very much dependent on her family when making decisions. Don’t expect her to make decisions on her own without consulting with the head of the family, but you can get her to help explain your point of view to the rest of the family. She respects age, status and background as much as she respects achievement. She is very connected to several people and can get information and develop solutions faster than you can imagine. In turn, however, that makes her more diffuse, relationship-oriented and emotional during the decision-making process. She can do many things at the same time, but this will inhibit her from meeting the deadline for every activity unless you remind her which one is the priority. She can be late for meetings if you do not tell her how much you worry when she is late. She believes in internal control and planning, as well as living in harmony with ever-changing ex- ternal factors. Being a decent young woman and developing a good relationship with the father—the government in this case—is the key to success. Otherwise, it might be difficult to get permission if you want to take her out. In conclusion, Turkey is a hard-working, energetic, young individual who can achieve great things for you if you develop a good relationship with her while managing or doing business by not acting like a patronizing adult figure who thinks he is always right based on his experiences and the values of his own business culture.