Answer to Question 1: Socio-cultural differences create problems for Walt Disney in opening parks overseas mainly because of incorrect social and cultural interpretations about a country’s laws, history or other country-specific references. For example, Disney’s theme park presence in Europe has been unsuccessful because of “cultural faux pas that have turned off its European audience” (Ressner, 2005, p. 2). One of these mistakes was the fact that a restaurant at a Disney theme park in Europe did not serve wine which was seen as an insult to the French. Wine is a staple of European and French culture, so incidents such as this causes problems in the socio-cultural realm of doing business overseas for Disney theme parks (Ressner, 2005).
Answer to Question 2: Ethically, it would be unfair to pay U.S. employees who are relocated overseas a different wage than local employees receive. Locality pay takes into consideration what the locals are being paid for specific jobs. If a person from the U.S. relocates to a different country and is doing the same type of job as a person local to that country is doing, then the pay rate should be comparable. It is no different than if it were the other way around, when people from foreign countries come to work in the U.S. They receive whatever pay rate a job pays and are not adjusted down because they would have been paid less for the same job in their country. For example, people from India are willing to relocate to the U.S. to earn more money, even if it is on a temporary basis before returning to their country (Bhattacharya, 2012).
Answer to Question 3: Opening American fast food restaurants in Disney parks overseas selling the same kind of food sold in U.S. parks can be both good and bad. Many menu items can remain the same but some should be customized to fit cultural norms to satisfy the local community. For example, McDonald’s international success in more than 119 countries is due, in part, to catering to the palates of the local people by “inventing food tailored to their tastes (Anderson, 2012).
Anderson, S. (2012, October 19). McDonald’s tailors international menus to locals’ palates. Retrieved from Kentucky.com: http://www.kentucky.com/2012/10/19/2377714/mcdonalds-tailors-international.html
Bhattacharya, S. (2012, February 6). 28% employees In India willing to relocate overseas: Survey. Retrieved from The Economic Times: http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2012-02-06/news/31030803_1_employees-turkey-and-india-countries
Ressner, J. (2005, July 11). Disney’s Great Leap into China. Time Magazine.