The German management system is often a mystery for those who want to do business with our neighbours across the Rhine. It is not easy for the French to understand a country where managers can be forced to share decision-making power with trade unionists, and where they can question managers to make sure that enough redundancies have been made to save the company, and where trade unionists can vote in favour of bonuses for the management. Jean-Jacques Piette, who has had extensive experience in helping both French and German companies, describes the structure and practices of German companies. He shows where and how decisions are taken, and how the board of directors, the supervisory board and the works council operate. One has to grasp the many intricacies of the system before launching oneself into a partnership with the Germans in order to avoid the risk of being seriously disappointed.
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