Cultural characteristics as determinants of management behavior Flashcard

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In the past decennary of increased globalisation and diverseness, concern across boundary lines has increased. Although transverse boundary line concern faces a batch of challenges non merely from the political and socio economic paradigm but besides from civilization ( Porter, 1990 ) . National civilization has gained importance, as it is important in pull offing planetary operations. Multinational concern scheme research has long acknowledged the importance of national cultural features as determiners of direction behaviour ( Cheng 1989 ; Rosenweig and Singh 1991 ) . So now, What is civilization? It is true that no two homo would cognize the same things but they frequently have great trade of cognition in common. This common cognition or corporate memory to a big extent brand people work together, communicate and unrecorded together. This forms communities and if shared among adequate people in a state, its features are called national civilization. The common cognition constitutes one of the elements which make national civilization unique ( The Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, 2nd edition, revised and updated, by E. D. Hirsch, Jr. , and James Trefil, is reviewed ) .

There are a batch of theories that attempt to explicate civilization like the 1s proposed by Fons Trompenaar,1993 ; Kluckhohn and Strodtbeck, 1961, Edward T.Hall but Geert Hofstede ‘s “ Culture ‘s effects ” has been unusually influential and his work has provided the foundation for many surveies on, intercultural dealingss ( Hart, 1999 ) , cross-cultural direction control systems design ( Harrison & A ; McKin- non, 1999 ) , international concern research ( Chandy & A ; Williams, 1994 ) , and psychological science ( Baskerville, 2003 ; Oyserman, Coon, & A ; Kem- melmeier, 2002 ; Schimmack, Oishi, & A ; Diener, 2005 ; Triandis, 2004 ) , most frequently seeking to find how differences on cultural dimensions ( i.e. , power distance, individuality, uncertainness turning away, and maleness ) impacted work related values and behaviour. ( National Culture, Leadership and Citizenship: Deductions for Cross-cultural Management, p 78 )

Harmonizing to Geert Hofstede the civilization is defined as “ corporate scheduling of head and explains that it lies between human nature on one side and single personality on the other ” ( Hofstede 1991 ) . Hofstede ‘s cultural model has been applied in a broad assortment of contexts and his work has gained great support and is of premier importance to many research workers in assorted subjects. As stated by Baskerville, “ Culture ‘s Consequences demonstrates an norm of 94 commendations per annum in the last 18 old ages. Part of this degree of usage appears to reflect attempts of research workers incognizant of arguments refering the legitimacy of Hofstede ‘s dimensions ” ( R.F.Baskerville,2003 ) . So immense is the credence of hofstedes work.

Geert Hofstede an expert of surveies in civilization from Netherland developed a cross- civilization theoretical account. “ The five dimensions of civilization are defined as follows Power Distance: ‘the extent to which the less powerful members of organisations and establishments ( like the household ) expect and accept that power is distributed unevenly ‘ ( Hofstede, 1991: 28 ; Hofstede & A ; Peterson, 2000: 401 ) . Uncertainty Avoidance: ‘intolerance for uncertainness and ambiguity ‘ ( Hofstede, 1991: 113 ; Hofstede & A ; Peterson, 2000: 401 ) . Individualism versus Bolshevism: ‘the extent to which persons are integrated into groups ‘ ( Hofstede, 1991: 51 ; Hofstede & A ; Peterson, 2000: 401 ) . Masculinity versus Femininity ‘assertiveness and competitiveness versus modestness and caring ‘ ( Hofstede, 1991: 82-3, 1998b ; Hofstede & A ; Peterson, 2000: 401 ) ” ( McSweeney,2002 )

Hofstede defined civilization as a “ Corporate scheduling of head ” , his construct of civilization promotes an image of the person as simply a inactive bearer of a preset cultural templet ( Ailon, 2007 ; Ailon -Souday & A ; Kunda,2003 ) . Equally much as Hofstede ‘s work has been universally accepted as I was researching I came across a figure of critics for his work ( e.g Galit Ailon ( 2008 ) ; R.F.Baskerville ( 2003 ) ; McSweeney ( 2002 ) ) . It was so it dawned on me the cogency of the theory that even I had used in my alumnus thesis like an unimpeachably acceptable rule. As G.Ailon ( 2008 ) stated “ it is non he ( Hofstede ) , the person, who is of involvement here ; alternatively, the dianoetic patterns that governed his text that predominated and ‘ran through ‘ him ( Foucault, 1972: 139 ) that are of involvement. ” So here I am traveling to critically measure his theory within a certain grade of my personal apprehension of it although to a great extent trusting on the articles of McSweeney and Galit ailon.

A important facet of national civilization research of Hofstede is the transparence with which he related the cultural dimensions with other surveies of state or national differences for the intents of doing international comparings. Each of the dimensions of index was compared to seven other national measurings: GNP, latitude, economic growing, population size and growing, population denseness and organisation size. So the socio economic informations used by him does depict cultural dimension instead the historical beginnings of states. ( R.F.Baskerville, 2003 ) . His survey comes to demo that a states properties are culturally influenced. And most of the reviews have unusually questioned the simplest of facts that many have failed to believe. As Mikael Sondergaard puts it, most of the argument on hofstede ‘s work has been on the undermentioned facets of his survey:

studies are inappropriate instruments to mensurate civilization

unit of analysis of states is non the best unit suited for analyzing civilization

One company can non supply information about the full states civilization

IBM information is old and disused

Four dimensions cant tell the whole narrative

( hypertext transfer protocol: // ) .

I am traveling to be discoursing the above mentioned in item now, though hofstede ‘s work has entailed significant part in the field of cultural surveies there are some pertinent issues that leaves uncertainty on the cogency of the typology produced by him. It is non possible for national civilization to be unvarying, there is considerable diverseness. An premise of a homogenous civilization can merely be made by presuming that civilization is consistent, pure, stable, and nil external like other civilizations and non cultural factors influence a national civilization. ( McSweeney, Forthcoming ) Which is difficult to believe in world because when a figure of civilizations and subcultures co-exist it is impossible for it remain independent and wholly uninfluenced by the other. Otherwise we have to see civilizations as being tough plenty to defy any efforts to alter them. Some of the issues are discussed in the due class.

The studies were the anchor of the survey. The studies were carried out on 40 IBM subordinates around the universe between 1964 and 1973 and used about 117000 questionnaires. Most of the research workers province that a study is non an appropriate instrument for accurately finding and mensurating cultural disparity. This is particularly evident when the variable being measured is a value which culturally sensitive and subjective ( Schwartz 1999 ) . Two studies were carried out and consequences are a combination of responses from both the studies. A closer scrutiny revealed that non all questionnaires were used and that the mean figure per state was little and sometimes evens a small letter. In merely six states ( ) the figure of respondents were more than 1000 and in Pakistan was merely 70 The narrowness of the Hofstede surveyed research population radically compounds the graduated table job ( . McSweeney, 2002 ) . This leads to a uncertainty in the statistical unity of the consequences obtained from the study. As Schwartz ‘s ( 1992 ) puts it ‘that one can non deduce the normative ideals of a civilization from the norm of single responses ‘ ( p. 51 ) .

The PD ( Power distance ) index was based on three inquiries in the IBM questionnaire. The first inquiry was a five point graduated table, and it asked how often in their experience employees were afraid of showing dissension with their directors and 2nd and 3rd inquiries asked about their preferable leading manner ( bossy, persuasive, advisory, and democratic ) and the manner that closely matched their foreman. G.Ailon ( 2008 ) states that “ in each phase of the research procedure an effort of neutralisation is seeable. This begins with the standardised uniform questionnaire that has been used worldwide. In consequence, how- of all time, uniformity was, meant ot direct respondents in the waies determined by a Western, managerially oriented research squad. The questionnaire coerced a western axis of comparing on non-western civilizations. It had a egalatarian portraiture of western civilization and ignored racial and colonial inequalities and defined racial power distance under uncertainity turning away. This fact, enabled a state like South Africa due to apartheid to be represented in the sample by “ white respondents merely ” whether partial in footings of population sample, questionnaire content, or both, it constituted a political act that, nevertheless inadvertently, neutralised racism and colonialism by excepting them from measurement.Hofstede besides tried to neutralize certain facets of the dimension by universalisation, saying that Hierarchial inequality is something “ we necessarily find, ” “ the kernel of organsation ” and so the picks given on the questionnaire was already based on the impression of its cosmopolitan inevitableness thereby pin downing the respondent in an unseeable manner to positively reply the neutrality and inevitableness of the managerial power. “ ( G.Ailon,2008 ) .Though they had picks, and their replies did vary, these were once more manipulated and labeled in such a manner that hofstede tried “ to expropriate the significance of the replies from his respondents, claiming, in so many words, that anything they said proves his point-using their voices to turn his hypotheses into maxims ” ( G.Ailon,2008 ) .

The big power distance in France and Belgium ( which were exclusions in Nordic, Anglo, Germany ) he attributed to the cultural heritage of Roman imperium, likewise the little power distance in Pakistan he attributes to their Islamic spiritual background and belief that ‘all are equal in the eyes of God ‘ . He used such freedoms to warrant his claim that “ little PD states are economically “ developed, ” big PD states are “ less developed ” or “ developing. ” ” ( Ailon.G,2002 ) . It emphasizes that those from little power-distance civilizations are likely to accept duty, while those from big power-distance civilizations are likely to be more disciplined ( Triandis,1993 )

The Uncertainty Avoidance ( UA ) index was based on three inquiries once more and they were related to the frequence of jitteriness and tenseness at work, the second was “ ” How long do you believe you will go on working for this company? ” “ Please bespeak the extent to which you personally agree or disagree. . . [ that ] company regulations should non be bro- ken- even when the employee thinks it is in the company ‘s best involvement ” ( Hofstede,1980:76 -77,405,408 – 409 ) .Hofstedes book states “ those in weak uncertainty-avoidance civilizations may be really high in basic inventions, while those in strong uncertainty-avoidance civilizations may prevail in preciseness fabrication ” . ( Triandis,1993 )

Though Hofstede admits that better indexs could hold been developed in determining the UA, because it was n’t a familiar construct when they developed the IBM questionnaires, he really strongly and decidedly links a high UA to a figure of socio-psychological inclinations. ( G.Ailon,2008 ) low UA, for illustration, is suggested to ensue from advanced modernisation ; older democracies ; heavy populations in hapless states and thin populations in affluent states ; tolerant faiths that stress relativity ; historical events marked by less statute law and more colony of differences by dialogue and/or struggle, as opposed to mere heritage of developed systems of statute law ; low average age of population leaders ; and smaller organisations ( 1980: 185 ) . The suggested effects of low UA include slower economic growing after World War II, weaker patriotism, less aggressiveness versus other states, “ looser ” societies, stronger feelings of citizen competency, a casuistic attack to legal issues, a stronger speech pattern on ballad competencies as expressed by holding more nurses per physician, more spiritual tolerance, matter-of-fact or introvert brooding faiths, rel- ativism, empiricist philosophy instead than “ theoricism ” in societal scientific disciplines, more ambitious employees, directors who are more involved in scheme issues, and so away ( 1980: 186-187 ) . He is merely coercing people to visualize a universe where everything is interconnected through simple logic. ( G.Ailon, 2002 ) At a point Hofstede states “ people from lower UAI civilizations will be given to make better in cross-cultural contacts ” ( 1980: 398 ) , I doubt this as it is something that is related to persons personal communicating accomplishments and does n’t count if he were from a state with a low UA index. Hofstede justifies the power of directors with a western background that they have a low UA and Small PD and so they are most suited for strategic and transverse cultural direction. So is that merely the western directors have this accomplishment which they imbibed from civilization and their opposite numbers around the universe deficiency this critical accomplishment. ( G.Ailon, 2008 )

The Individualism ( IDV ) index was based on work end inquiries in which the respondents were asked to rate the importance of a assortment of statements, in which high IDV were attributed to giving importance to making a occupation go forthing out personal and leisure clip and, low IDV were attributed to holding good physical accomplishments and preparation chances at work. These tried to measure a individual independency from organisation and 2nd to measure what the person expected from the organisation. ( G.Ailon,2008 ) As McSweeney put it “ ‘power distance ‘ and ‘individualism and Bolshevism ‘ were statistically identified by him merely in nationally averaged information. At the degree of persons, they had near- zero inter-correlations ( Bond 2002 ; Schwartz 1994 ) for those dimensions and therefore no explanatory power at that degree ” . Hofstede states that those from high-collectivism civilizations may demo employee committedness, while members of organisations from high-individualism civilizations can gain from direction mobility.

Hofstede ‘s book states that “ those from civilizations high in muliebrity may be able to supply personal services, custom-made merchandises, and be particularly successful in biochemistry, while those in masculine civilizations may stand out in mass production, efficiency, heavy industry, and bulk chemical science ; The maleness index like the IDV was besides based on work end inquiry and it attempted to mensurate the extent to which respondents endorsed “ ego ends ” ( related to net incomes and promotion ) and “ societal ends ” ( related to affable dealingss at work topographic point and a friendly ambiance ) ” . This index is based on the cosmopolitan dissection associating to sexual character and ends, in which work forces are more self-asserting and tough and adult females are more nurturing and Tender. He states that the distribution of labour is affected by the ends of the organisation. This harmonizing to me is true but he besides goes to state that concern organisations have ends of accomplishment which relates to the masculine index and it is non surprising they are run by work forces and their clime is set by work forces, which I as a miss would hate. Not merely from a point of supporting my ain sex but from the common universe illustrations, A survey organized by the Finnish Business and Policy stated, Companies managed by adult females are on mean 10 per cent more profitable than those with a adult male as CEO. The survey was conducted on atleast 14000 limited liability coating companies in 2003. ( hypertext transfer protocol: // ) . Even in a state like US which has a reasonably good maleness index of 62, You have companies form the luck 500 like yokel, pepsico, Newyorktimes and Kraft nutrients that are run by adult females ceo ‘s so it does n’t needfully intend one has to be a adult male to be the large foreman.

Though “ national civilization is non theorized as the lone civilization or a entirety of civilizations, within a state, but by definition it culturally distinguishes the members of one state from another. “ ( Mcsweeney,2002 ) .Hofstede says that each state has a alone civilization. I would somewhat differ from that sentiment, because that kind of alone cuture may be attributed to the cultural heritage and facets like executing humanistic disciplines that may change from state to state unambiguously but on the footing of single attitude and behaviour it seems a small irrelevant. If you take India for illustration, it is culturally diverse and it does hold legion subcultures but the attitude and behaviours differ so widely even inside a subculture.

Hofstede provinces that National civilization is said to be carried by all persons in a state ( 1980a: 38 ) or a ‘central inclination ‘ ( 1991: 253 ) . The IBM study responses within each state were characterized by extremist differences. This now leaves uncertainty on his premises of national civilization as being same in all persons in a state. He assumed that the mean inclination of the IBM employee ‘s responses as the national representative. There seems to be no valid ground to turn out it due to the complete ignorance on the background of those interviewed, who largely good educated, in-between category

The samples for his survey was entirely from a individual company called IBM. A survey fixated on merely one company can non perchance supply information on the full cultural system of a state ( Graves 1986, 14-15 ; Olie 1995, 135 ; Sondergaard 1994, 449 ) . The responses were besides from merely the selling and gross revenues executives of the company for which Hofstede claimed they shared the same organisational civilization as that of all the other employees of IBM. The civilizations carried by each respondent are efficaciously assumed to be three entirely non-interacting and lasting civilizations: the ‘organizational ‘ , an ‘occupational ‘ , and the ‘national ‘ . He assumes there is merely one IBM civilization and non civilizations, which, as it were, possesses all employees and every business has a common world-wide occupational civilization ( McSweeney, 2002 ) . Furthermore, McSweeney besides evidences Hofstedes blind premise that every person in the company had the same organisational and occupational civilization regardless of the committedness and trueness each person had to his organisation and besides the continuance of service by the employee to the organisation which are all factors that lead to the bond that an employee creates overtime with the organisation he works for. Though after a few old ages Hofstede did admit that there is a assortment of distinguishable civilizations within and between units of the same organisation and besides redefined his statement on organisational civilization so his premise made in the first survey would n’t be invalidated. ( McSweeney,2002 ) . It is non known if the factors he redefined are supposed to be self apparent. Sing occupational civilization, as McSweeney puts it, Hofstede assumes that members of a individual business around the universe portion the same occupational civilization. Clarification sing his recognition of cultural heterogeneousness in organisations is needed i.e. it lacks lucidity. Another case where we might raise a forehead is genuineness of answers by the questionnaire respondents, though the replies were confidential, the respondent ‘s anterior cognition of the terminal intent of the study might hold influenced their replies so as to better theirs or their divisions ‘ place ( McSweeney, 2002 ) . Yet hofstede ‘s trust on his guess that the replies are immune to respondents bet oning and were the pure results of unconscious pre-programmed values ( 1980a,1991 ; Hofstede & A ; Peterson, 2000 ) . Another facet is the fullness of the questionnaire to arouse all the necessary inputs to measure a civilization.

As McSweeney stated in any circumstance the IBM subordinate had many nationally untypical features. When ab initio IBM had centralized control and its US ownership during a period in which foreign direct investing was relatively new. In cases where working for high engineering was rare in 3rd universe states like Bangladesh and India than in an industrialised state like United provinces. What happens when states are integrated, for case the integrating of Hongkong into the People ‘s Republic of China ( McSweeney, 2002 ) .Does the national word picture alteration? Does the attitude and behaviour of people at work topographic point alteration instantly? Do we instantly see a state with a larger sample to portray the national civilization of two states?

Political influences and societal establishments, jurisprudence are the non cultural characteristic that influence civilization in a big manner and that Hofstede excludes and denies holding a nexus with national civilization. For illustration, Christmas was one time illegal in England, during 1647, during which singing Christmas carols could stop a individual in prison for about six months but it was subsequently reinstated in 1660. Do n’t you believe this must hold has an obvious consequence on the civilization ( “ mental scheduling ” ) that kids born and raised in that 22 twelvemonth period developed. Though this is dated manner before the survey was undertaken I have quoted it as an illustration to state at that place might hold been other effects that might hold probably influenced any cultural characteristic. Hofstede might admit these as exclusions but they have to considered when pulling decisions about a states civilization.

Has Hofstede truly identified all the primary cultural degree dimensions? Many others like Schwartz have tried to place some national civilizations utilizing different questionnaires and have produce really different descriptions. In fact Schwartz ( 1994 ) found seven cultural degree dimensions which so was acknowledged by Hofstede as merely non being identified because inquiries related to those dimensions /descriptions were non asked in his study. Hofstede gave a bipolarity to each of his dimensions for illustration the ‘individualism ‘ and ‘collectivism ‘ , but as Triandis ( 1994 ) puts it, “ the two can coexist and are merely emphasized more or lessaˆ¦ depending on the state of affairs. ” But Hofstede ‘s dimensions do non see such co-existence and blindly ignores such of import cultural qualities. ( McSweeney forthcoming )

Another obvious defect I found on the credibleness of his typology is his add-on of the 5th dimension: ‘Confucian Dynamism ‘ ( 1991 ) or ‘long versus short-run orientation ‘ ( 1999 ) . He extracted this from a ‘Chinese Values Survey ‘ ( CVS ) by the Chinese civilization connexion group which identified hofstedes 4th dimension ( ‘Uncertainty turning away ‘ ) as irrelevant to their population and downgraded it to a non cosmopolitan dimension. ( Bond,1988 ; lowe & A ; Oswick,1996 ) .As stated by Mcsweeney ( 2002 ) from the broad literature of civilization, it is still basically a thing to be ‘grasped ‘ and can non be described by ‘dimensions ‘ and ‘units ‘ .

Another consideration advanced by research workers is if Hofstede ‘s theoretical account reflects the present twenty-four hours ( Roberts and Boyacigiller, 1984 ; Sondergaard, 1994 ) . Hofstede ( 1980a, 1991 ) assumes that cultural values are stable over clip. But is his work out of day of the month after 30 old ages? Hofstede claims to hold identified full states civilization and non that which is specific to workplaces ( McSweeney, 2002 ) and Producers of scientific cognition, it seems, non merely misrepresent “ the Rest ” ( the primary accent of postcolonial authorship ; e.g. , Said, 1978 ) but besides misrepresent the West. ( G.Ailon, 2008 )

There is no denial that Hofstede ‘s work has given substantial findings. His findings do tap some of implicit in significance of state ‘s civilization. However construing them and utilizing it to cover with other states requires a certain grade of cautiousness. Hopefully, these findings finally lead to a valid step that captures the profusion of the assorted cultural dimensions and can be deployed at an single degree. Given the diverseness of the universe market place, it is indispensable for sellers have a proper step of civilization in order to understand consumer behaviour. ( Blodgett et al, 2008 )

As McSweeney puts it “ Hofstede ‘s research can lawfully be called a cross-national sentiment comparing merely from the point that data from organisations in different states were compared Culture is conceptualized as a force, as a determiner, but descriptions of it are based on analysis replies to fixed-choice inquiries. “ ( McSweeney forthcoming ) , which I think were manipulative plenty ( even if it was n’t in certain instances, they were justified by research worker to correlate with his findings ) to pull out the coveted replies of the research worker. It was argued that what Hofstede ‘identified ‘ is non national civilization, but an averaging of situational specific sentiments from which dimensions or facets of national civilization are inexcusably inferred. Hofstede ‘s claim to hold through empirical observation measured national civilization differences relies on important but indefensible premises. ( Mc Sweeney forthcoming ) . Hofstede has given bipolarity to each dimensions for illustration his ‘masculinity ‘ and ‘Femininity ‘ any civilization will show a figure of contrary proverbs ( “ All good things come to those who wait ” and “ clip and surge delay for none “ as a portion of its repertory ( Mcsweeney,2002 ) Hofstede miserably failed to place that theses bipolarities could co-exist in any state of affairs.

Hofstede ‘s answers to McSweeney were evasive and non-adhering to the chief facet of the review. As G.Ailon ( 2008 ) put is “ If one accepts the model, it fundamentally follows that one must besides accept the logic of the review. ” Generalizations about national civilization are no good. Him placing a states civilization with the responses from a really little sample in each state ( compared to the state ‘s ‘ population except for those 6 states with more than 1000 respondents ) , and besides utilizing the questionnaires that were n’t created strictly for research intent is a really seeable defect. He tried to expropriate the significance of the replies from his respondents, claiming, in so many words, that anything they said proves his point and used their voices to turn his hypotheses into maxims ( G.Ailon,2008 )

The analysis throws visible radiation on the laterality of western theories, irrespective of purposes, it reinforces a certain set of values of directors, Westerners, Europeans while at the same clip devaluating the Rest. Though he tried to counterbalance and praise the E by adding his 5th dimension. I would state Hofstede tried to supply like a “ Single Magical expression ” ( Elman Service, 1968:409 ) and easy valued civilization utilizing statistics and scientific casts and X ‘s and Y ‘s. Just so that this would let research to be completed more rapidly and easy through employment of his prefabricated word pictures of causal national civilization. This really in my position devalues civilization that has a myriad of ethos. His employment of really remarkably sophisticated statistical techniques in the late 1970 ‘s likely were a ground for his theoretical account ‘s legitimacy ( Oyserman et Al. 2002a, for an overview )

To reason, from what I infer from all the readings, more research is needed to give a tough step of civilization and besides place the switching cultural maps which is greatly influenced by, and influences, globalisation and engineering, nevertheless this is hard to accomplish and may hold temporal value due to the dynamic nature of civilization.

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