Overall Business Impressions

Steel Museum!

Steel Museum!

December 31: the last day of 2013. Our group started the day by packing up, checking out of the hotel at 9:30 am, and heading to the steel museum. Monterrey was true to form with its consistantly beautiful weather; the sun was shining, the birds were singing, not a cloud in the sky. By that I mean it was 50 degrees and raining again. After a delightful walk in the park, we astutely deduced by the dark windows and locked doors that the steel museum was closed. Thankfully, there was an indoor flea market nearby. As we entered the flea market, an aroma of pleather, toilet cleaner, and body odor wafted through the air. We entertained ourselves by wandering through booths of knockoff clothing, religious paraphernalia, and food that looked garaunteed to inflict irreparable damage on your bowels. We spent our final hours in Monterrey in a mall that offered the same experience as a shopping mall in the U.S., save for our utter inability to conversate with store employees. Many employees quickly noticed our blank, wide eyed stares, and resorted to miming. The rest of the day/ new years celebrations will be covered by Valeria.

Overall, businesses in Monterrey are very similar to US businesses. For example, the brewery tour was structured like a U.S. brewery tour. All of the companies went in depth about their mission to stakeholders and costomers, sustainability issues, and giving back to their communities. The last company we visited was structured very similarly to the Monsanto Roundup plant I worked for last spring; they had similar logistics systems/ problems and similar hurricane issues/ protocols.

Despite the similarities, there are several large differences between U.S. and Mexican plants. U.S. business culture seems to revolve around being on time. As was the case when we showed up to the brewery on time and had to wait 45 minutes for our guide, Mexican business culture does not focus on being timely for meetings. Mexican companies such as the brewery have a strong focus on making employees friends; they opened a new employee bar area for drinking and networking after work. Overall, these visits added valuable experiences and new perspectives on working in a global company.

-Noelle Mailhot

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3 Comments

  1. CU blog

    Having now returned from Mexico, I can say I had some of my most meaningful learning experiences during our time in Monterrey. Akra Polyester may have been my favorite business we visited and I also learned the most most about Mexican culture there. Our evening at La Nueva Luna saw me breaking out of my comfort zone and trying my hand at some salsa dancing. The Latin music has a rhythm that just seems to take hold of you and with some instruction from our lovely professor (who can really tear up the dance floor btw) I was busting some moves of my own. ~RJ

  2. Jake

    Although the weather was not spectacular in monterrey as it rained all but one day during our visit, the businesses kept us indoors. Most of our guides were very helpful answering our questions and teaching us about their company and how they ran them. Big thanks to the guides!

  3. CU blog

    I enjoyed the business visits in Monterrey, I appreciated the time the different firms took with us to explain and describe and show and etc… all about their business operations. Their passion about their firm or their job came thru to us from the moment we reached them, it was genuine. In addition, each company representative(s) was very sure to try to adapt their presentation styles and the entire visit to what they new of or had perceived “American Culture and/or American Business Meetings” to be like, that was a nice touch of home while experiencing a foreign adventure. One very interesting thing I learned while at Indelpro is the manner in which they store their inventory. They have a system of rail cars that raw materials, work in process and finished goods can be stored. This allows the company to move them around as needed. The ease in which they could pull materials in and out of production as well as store until ship time, (eg 5 minutes or 5 days) is a very efficient practice. The amount of time, machine wear and tear and labor saved by doing this must be enormous and therefore have a favorable impact on the bottom line. The company representative shared with us that they are planning on expanding their internal rail system by approximately 1/3. Charlene Marisol

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