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I. Profile of Indonesia
‧    Capital: Jakarta 
‧    Location: South-eastern Asia, archipelago between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean
‧    Total Area: 1,900,000 km2 
‧    Population: 221,932,000
‧    Language: Bahasa Indonesia (official), English, Dutch, Javanese, and more than 580 other 
languages and dialects. 
‧    National Holiday: 17 August 1945 


II. Indonesians’ behaviors in accordance with their notions of time and space
A. Notions of time
1. The social psychologist Robert Levine, who has devoted decades to studying people’s ideas about time, suggests that cultures can be divided into those which live on “event time,” where events are allowed to dictate people’s schedules, and those which live on “clock time,” where people’s schedules dictate events. Unsurprisingly, countries that live on clock time are more successful economically.

2. In hyper-punctual countries like Japan, pedestrians walk fast, business transactions take place quickly, and bank clocks are always accurate. In less punctual places, such as Indonesia, pedestrians amble, workers dawdle, and bank clocks are usually wrong.

3. Indonesians do not make hasty decisions because they might be viewed as not having given the matter sufficient consideration. Be prepared to exercise patience.--> Time does not bring money, good relations and harmony do. Take your time and do not rush. Hurried instructions show a lack of respect.

4. Initial meetings may be more about getting-to-know-you rather than business. Do not be surprised if business is not even discussed.



B.
Notions of space
1. Indonesians are indirect communicators. This means they do not always say what they mean. It is up to the listener to read between the lines or pay attention to gestures and body language to get the real message.

2. Indonesians speak quietly and with a subdued tone. -->Need more space among people. (See power point ‘The types of people that are listed in the contact group vs. non-contact groups)

3. Business is personal in Indonesia so spend time through communication to build a strong relationship. Dealing with someone face-to-face is the only effective way of doing business.
 
III. Factors influencing Indonesians’ thinking and behaviors
A.     Diversity
1.      Ethnicity/race: Javanese 45%, Sundanese 14%, Madurese 7.5%, coastal Malays 7.5%, other 26%. Each province has its own language, ethnic make-up, religions and history.

2.     
Religion: Islam 88%, Protestant 5%, Roman Catholic 3%, Hindu 2%, Buddhist 1%
→ This great diversity has needed a great deal of attention from the government to maintain a cohesion. As a result the national motto is "Unity in Diversity," the language has been standardized and a national philosophy is universal justice for all Indonesians. 

B. Dress (What to wear?)
1. Business dress is generally conservative.
2. Women should dress conservatively ensuring that they are well covered from ankle to neck. Tight fitting clothes are best avoided.

C. Hierarchy
1. Hierarchical relationships are respected, emphasized and maintained.
2. Respect is usually shown to those with status, power, position, and age. This can be seen in both the village and the office where the most senior is expected to make group decisions.
3. It is common for Indonesians to enter the meeting room according to rank. Although you do not have to do this, doing so would give a good impression.--> Hierarchy plays a great role in Indonesian culture.

D. Greetings
1. Men and women usually shake hands and bow the head slightly when introduced for the first time. After that, it is unusual to shake hands in greeting; a nod or slight bow is most appropriate. Indonesians shake hands when congratulating someone or when saying good-bye before a long trip.
2. One never touches the head of another person. The left hand is not used to shake hands, touch hands, touch others, point, eat, or give or receive objects. Standing with one’s hands in the pockets or on the hips is a sign of defiance or arrogance.


Reference:
‧    Indonesia Language and Greetings: www.countryreports.org
‧    Indonesia - Language, Culture, Customs and Business Etiquette:   
‧    Punctuality Pays: http://www.newyorker.com
‧    Timeline: Indonesia. BBC News. BBC (23 August 2007).
‧   Terri Morrison, Wayne A. Conaway, George A. Borden (1994). Kiss, Bow, Or Shake Hands: How to Do Business in Sixty Countries. Business & Economics (pp.438).
‧    蔡百銓(1997)。印尼當代史。台北:國立編譯館。
‧    葉琦玲(1999)。華人與印尼。經典雜誌,第七期。
‧    李美賢(2005)。印尼史:異中求同的海上神鷹。台北:三民書局。



 

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