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Self-Assessment Answers

Chapter 1
1 Answer: a) Innovation strategy Work differently Creative, long-term, independent, high concern for quality, high concern for quantity, high risk taking, high concern for results, high preference to assume responsibility, flexible to change, tolerant of ambiguity and unpredictability, broad skill application, high job (firm) involvement b) Quality strategy Commitment and utilisation Repetitive, predictable, short-term, modest interdependence, modest cooperativeness, high concern for quality, modest concern for output, high concern for process, low risk-taking, commitment to goals of organisation c) Cost reduction strategy Reduction in cost of work output per employee Relatively repetitive and predictable behaviours, short-term focus, independent, modest concern for quality, high concern for output quantity, primary concern for results, low risk-taking, high comfort with stability. 2 Answer: a) SWOT Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats b) PESTEL Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental, Legislative c) Five Forces Threat of New Entrants, Power of Buyers, Power of Suppliers, Threat of Substitutes, and Competitive Rivalry within the Industry 3 Answer: Multi-domestic strategy Strategic and operating decisions are decentralised to the separate business units and management within individual countries. Philips was traditionally renowned for this approach. Global strategy Corporate headquarters devises strategy and monitors and rewards standardisation and operational conformance to global specifications

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for products and services. Japanese corporations such as Sony and Komatsu have enjoyed strong reputation for success in this area. Transnational strategy Simultaneous implementation of strategies of global efficiency and local responsiveness. ABB is one of the most commonly cited MNCs advocating and implementing transnational strategies. 4 Answer: Leveraging Strategy Communicate and transfer existing knowledge within your organisation Expanding Strategy Create and build on existing knowledge Appropriating Strategy Take new knowledge from external individuals and organisations and transfer it to your organisation Probing Strategy Create new, proprietory knowledge from your internal organisational resources 5 Answer: Integration Consistency and Consensus Differentiation Variation and Sub-Culture Conflict Fragmentation Ambiguity, Inconsistency and Fluctuation

Chapter 2
1 Model answer: Good answers will discuss duality and challenges between global integration and local adaptation; issues related to transfer of practices, implementation and internalisation; cultural and institutional differences between different nations with regard to performance and behaviour. Better answers will also note different international orientations (Perlmutter); the impact of e-HRM system; use examples and discuss the policy/implementation gap and the role of line managers. Include critical analysis, evaluation and a synthesis. 2 Model answer: Good answers should define flexible working practices, discuss legal and other institutional constraints on the development of certain forms of flexible working, the role of trade unions where appropriate, and the impact of

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Self-Assessment Answers
flexible working on individuals, and organisations and the cultural assumptions underlying its use. Better answers will locate these issues in the cultural and institutional environment and discuss the impact on society and what organisations should be aiming to do and how to take steps forward. 3 Model answer: Good answers should refer to the tension between standardisation and local awareness; identify problems with blanket imposition of HRM policies; note how these will be modified by local practice; and show that students understand that socialisation policies (recruitment, transfers, training, etc) are more likely to generate global awareness. Better answers will challenge the notion that company-wide thinking would be appropriate in all circumstances; and argue that implementation of principles and standards more likely to generate success than systems and procedures. 4 Model answer: Good answers should refer to the variety of approaches to HRM in different countries; discuss the likelihood of them being represented on key decision-making bodies and the relationship to the role of line managers. Better answers would also note the link to relevant institutions such as trade unions and employment legislation. 5 Model answer: Good answers will discuss convergence vs. divergence and what these terms mean; cultural and institutional explanations; using examples. Better answers will balance cultural and institutional reasons and explore the impact that these differences have on our paradigms of good HRM and the implications for organisations operating internationally. Include critical analysis, evaluation and a synthesis.


Chapter 3
1 Answer: (positivist view) How does culture influence this situation? Which are the cultural dimensions and values influencing the situation? (interpretive view) What does this situation mean to the actors involved? Which meanings do they associate with this issue? (critical) What is at stake in this situation? To what extent is this situation the outcome of power struggles, where culture is used as a device? (For more detail see Table 3.5.) 2 Answer: IHRM practices are influenced by cultural dimensions. For example, in a high Power Distance environment, organisations are likely to have a large proportion of supervisory personnel, and privileges and status symbols for managers that are both expected and accepted. Additional examples can be found for instance in Hofstede (2001) or House et al. (1997).

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3 Answer: Managers need to be aware of the ways employees make sense of their working environment: what it means to them. For example, detailed and seemingly constraining job descriptions were perceived as emancipatory tools by employees of the Socit dElectricit du Cameroun, since it could protect them from abusive use of power, a current problem they were facing (see Henry, 2007). Additional examples can be found for instance in dIribarne (2002) or Sackmann (1997). 4 Answer: When organisational members are talking about cultural differences, this could be a rhetorical device used to gain advantage in a power struggle. For example, organisational or national culture differences are shown to be used to explain why a merger failed, thus thereby occulting other problems that may not have been addressed. Additional examples can be found in Riad (2005) or Vaara (2002). 5 Answer: See Tables 3.13.4.

Chapter 4
1 Answer: The recent research shows that cross-border M&As are not less successful than domestic transactions. Cultural distance can have positive or negative effects. There is even some evidence that the success rate of cross-border deals may be higher than domestic deals. Many companies that engage in cross-border M&As have prior experience of M&A transactions and integration. 2 Answer: When no cultural change is desired in the acquired company, then it can be considered as a preservation acquisition. When a large amount of change in the acquired company is expected but with relatively little change for the acquirer, then absorption is the most likely path. When major cultural change is expected in both entities then the result is a cultural transformation, while the selective combination of the most appealing features of the two cultures is often described as a best-of-both acquisition. In rare cases, the culture of the acquirer is blended into that of the acquired firm in a reverse merger. 3 Answer: Retention of key talent (identified by 76 per cent of responding firms); Effective communication (71 per cent); Executive retention (67 per cent) and cultural integration (51 per cent) (Kay and Shelton, 2000). According to a subsequent consulting report, published nearly a decade later, the problems remained the same. Differences in organisational culture (50 per cent) and people integration (35 per cent) were top of the list of M&A challenges, in fact, four of the six top issues were people related (Mars et al., 2008). 4 Answer: Assessing culture, undertaking a human capital audit and selecting the management team, effective communication, retaining talent, creating the new culture and managing the transition.

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5 Answer: What are their core beliefs about what it takes to win? What drives their business strategy? Tradition or innovation? Is the company short-term or long-term in its outlook and execution of initiatives? How much risk is the company used to accepting? Is the company results-oriented or process-oriented? How is power distributed throughout the company? How are decisions made: consultation, consensus, or authority? How is information managed and shared?


Chapter 5
1 Answer: Questions to be considered include whether existing HRM approaches are relevant into other contexts, similarities and differences in HRM systems across different countries, reasons for these similarities and differences, and influence of institutions and cultural factors on the HRM approaches. 2 Answer: The Harvard model provides a broad classification of the content of HRM, covers a range of outcomes at different levels and hence it can be useful for comparative analysis. However, this model cannot explain complex relationships between strategic management and HRM and cannot predict relationship between HRM policies and outcomes. 3 Answer: 5-P stands for philosophy (statement to define business values and culture), policies (guidelines for people-related business issues), programmes (activities and efforts to address people-related business issues), practices (roles behaviours), and processes (definition of how HR activities are carried out). 4 Answer: Institutional forces of coercion and imitation play an important role in IHRM. Norms and expectations shared by members of a society or a particular industry influence how organisations should be structured and the kinds of managerial behaviour that are considered legitimate. Social forces can act as constraints on the degree of international transfer of HRM.

Chapter 6
1 Answer: Edstrm and Galbraiths description of this motive centres exclusively on control aspects and most of the English literature has interpreted it in this way. Additionally, all three motives identified by Edstrm and Galbraith may in fact lead to organisation development defined as the increase of the companys potential

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to succeed and compete in the international market. Therefore, organisation development is not a goal of international transfers as such, but is rather the result of knowledge transfer, management development and the creation of a common organisational culture and effective informal information network. 2 Answer: MNCs pursuing an ethnocentric staffing policy typically appoint parent country nationals to top positions in their subsidiaries. These traditional relocations may be complemented by short-term assignments if specific additional skills are required in the subsidiary. 3 Answer: The main reasons lie in a growing reluctance of traditional expatriates to relocate abroad, mainly due to dual-career issues, and the substantial cost involved in relocating traditional expatriates. 4 Answer: Short-term assignments are useful for the transfer of specific skills, for example in the scope of multinational project work or when particular problemsolving needs arise. They are also more cost effective than traditional expatriation, require less bureaucratic effort and can be applied in a more flexible and timely manner. At the same time, short-term assignments make the development of effective relationships with local colleagues and customers more difficult and may also lead to a higher risk of marital problems due to more pronounced levels of stress. 5 Answer: A comprehensive assessment of assignment success should include an evaluation of both individual (e.g. adjustment, promotion) and organisational (e.g. accomplishment of organisational tasks, repatriate retention) benefits that may result from the transfer. In addition, the assessment should not only be limited to the actual assignment period (e.g. task performance during the assignment) but should also include the post-assignment period (e.g. do attractive future assignments exist for the individual and to what extent does the repatriate transfer his or her expertise back to the home unit?).

Chapter 7
1 Answer: The chapter discusses employment protection, minimum wage rules and working time legislation. There are clearly many examples of country differences, including the absence of federal legal employment protection in the US, the absence of a statutory minimum wage in Germany and Sweden and limited entitlements to working time rules in Japan. At the other end of the spectrum, relatively strong employment protection rules for individual dismissal prevail in Portugal and the Netherlands, the relative level of the statutory minimum wage is high in France which is also renowned for its policy reforms in reducing working time.

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2 Answer: Pressures towards convergence include the internationalisation and liberalisation of financial markets, the spread of inflation-targeting macroeconomic policy, reductions on FDI restrictions, advances in information and communication technologies that facilitate offshoring and reductions in transport costs that improve the cost effectiveness of long-distance trade. Several areas of employment organisation suggest a nuanced pattern of change, including in policies of employment protection, welfare policy and collective bargaining, among others. 3 Answer: The coordinated market economy is based on both stronger employment protection and stronger coordination among employers. These arrangements encourage long-term investment in skill development, coordinated wage settlements and social cohesion. The liberal market economy model has flexible labour markets and promotes general education with short-term investment in skills and high job mobility. 4 Answer: The studies cited in the chapter point to the roles of works councils as a potential constraint, as well as the more general institutional features of the legal framework and industrial relations system. 5 Answer: Studies of diffusion of Japanese practices of lean production suggest that well developed systems of vocational training (such as in Germany) provide the appropriate skill base from which to diffuse high road forms of work organisation. Host country features that encourage greater worker autonomy also improve the receptiveness of a country to such forms of work organisation.


Chapter 8
1 Answer: The market-based, cultural and political approaches to studying transfer can be seen as each having the potential to shed light on the issue. Some writers argue that an integrated approach, drawing on aspects of each of the three perspectives, can help our understanding of this issue. One way of exploring this is through a case study and one such firm can be found in Edwards et al. (2007). 2 Answer: This framework draws on a number of ideas that have been developed in the social sciences and seeks to apply them to the issue of the transfer of employment practices in multinationals. A fuller understanding of the framework can be gauged from Edwards and Ferner (2002). 3 Answer: This issue is a controversial one. Some observers, such as Smith and Meiskins (1995), argue that it captures a key dynamic within the international economy, but the concept has been criticised on a number of grounds, particularly that it exaggerates the way in which countries consist of one model of production

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or service provision. An interesting application of the idea of dominance effects which draws on data from US, Japanese and German MNCs is Pudelko and Harzing (2007). 4 Answer: Following the logic of the analysis in this chapter, adaptations to a global HRM policy can be made for such reasons as to adjust to cultural and institutional differences and due to political disputes within the firm. An illustration that will stimulate thinking on this Lunnan et al. (2005). 5 Answer: This question raises the broader dimensions of transfer. It is often argued that transfer means that increasingly similar practices will be found across countries, particularly if these reflect the increasing role of dominance effects; on the other hand, if transfer reflects idiosyncrasies of particular multinationals, as the logic of the international integration point suggests, then there will continue to be marked differences between multinationals within the global economy.

Chapter 9
1 Answer: HPWS is a bundle of HR policies and practices which, when integrated together have a synergistic effect on increasing organisational performance. There is disagreement over what makes up a HPWS but typically this system includes the following: selective hiring, extensive training and development, high compensation contingent on performance, performance management and career development and work practices which focus on teamwork, decentralised decision making, harmonisation and employment security. 2 Answer: This perspective of HRM is also known as best practice HRM and claims that is bundle of HRM practices is capable of being used in any organisation irrespective of industry, size, workforce or product market. When HPWS is implemented it should lead to positive outcomes for all types of firms and so have a universal effect. The work of Pfeffer (1998), Huselid (1995) and Wood and Albanese (1995) have found empirical evidence to support this view. This perspective has been criticised for failing to consider: a) what other practices are in place; and b) the context in which these practices are used. 3 Answer: This perspective on HRM is also known as best fit HRM and raises the question as to whether or not each and every HR practice has to be included in order for the synergies in HPWS to take effect. It is assumed that best Practice HRM may not be appropriate for all situations and other approaches may have greater success in impacting on organisational performance. Best fit HRM attempts to fit HRM systems to a number of contingencies including business strategy, competitive circumstances and national business systems. This perspective has been criticised because the search for a contingency or matching model of HRM is limited by the impossibility of modelling all the contingent variables influencing HRM.

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4 Answer: Bailey (1993) suggests that HPWS impacts on firm performance through discretionary behaviour through the following equation: P = (A,M,O) where P = Performance; A = Ability; M= Motivation; and O = Opportunity. The causal model proposed by Wright and Nishii (2004) also attempts to explain how HPWS impacts on employee behaviour through moving from intended, to actual, to perceived HR practices. These perceived HR practices (i.e. how employees experience and judge HR practices applied to them) are then followed by employee reactions (i.e. attitudinal outcomes such as job satisfaction) and then performance. Two perspectives exist in the literature on employee experiences of HPWS. One is based on the mutually beneficial argument that HPWS increases employee autonomy and skill and allows them greater say in how they do their jobs. The second perspective incorporates labour process theory and suggests that these HPWS practices lead to work intensification. 5 Answer: HPWS research linking HRM investment to performance has not escaped criticism. Some major concerns include theoretical weaknesses, methodological criticisms (e.g., little consistency in HR practices included, use of single respondents usually an HR manager, variations in proxies used to measure HPWS and performance), causality and black box issues, the mutually beneficial versus work intensification argument and whether HPWS are globally applicable.


Chapter 10
1 Answer: a. Sender unit ability and willingness b. Receiver unit ability and willingness c. The mechanisms to share knowledge 2 Answer: Definition: Explicit or codified knowledge is knowledge that individuals and organisations know that they have objective, formal, systematic, incorporated in texts and manuals, and relatively easy to pass on to others at a low marginal cost. Virtually all knowledge stored in IT-based databases and systems is explicit. In contrast, tacit knowledge is personal, context specific, and hard or perhaps even impossible to formalise and communicate. Individuals may not even be conscious of the tacit knowledge they possess. Tacit knowledge often underlies complex skills and is built on the intuitive feel acquired through years of experience. Same: Explicit, often can be articulated clearly in words and stored in computer databases and other relatively standardised means of record-keeping. Different: Implicit, often hard to articulate, not easily communicated using standardised records or databases. Expatriates and person-to-person interaction

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have often been used to transfer tacit knowledge and skills. They remain the main ways of sharing tacit knowledge across boundaries. 3 Answer: a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h. i. Improving information about superior performance and knowledge Structural mechanisms Selecting expatriates with knowledge sharing in mind Social capital, social norms and global mindsets Performance management and incentives Gaining access to external knowledge Scanning global learning opportunities Partnering or merging Playing the virtual market

4 Answer: The knowledge management groups at ArcelorMittal and BP have many of the features associated with open communities of practice. These communities are characterised by some form of collaboration around a common set of interests. They differ from project teams and committees in that the participants roles are not defined by the firm. Although the focus of these communities is on internal company issues, they may also broker relationships with outside experts. Communities of practice cannot and should not be fully controlled by the firm, building instead on voluntary participation, although support and guidance is essential (Probst and Borzillo, 2008; Wenger and Snyder, 2000). Mittal refrained from appointing a best plant for others to emulate, believing that all units had something to teach others. Some multinationals have appointed geographically dispersed centres of excellence that, among other things, are in charge of knowledge sharing. Such centres can for instance be formed in various locations around a small group of individuals recognised for their leading-edge, strategically valuable knowledge. These centres of excellence are mandated to make their knowledge available throughout the global firm and enhance it so that it remains at the cutting edge. Three types of centre have been identified in global service firms charismatic (formed around an individual), focused (a small group of experts in a single location), and virtual (a larger group of specialists in multiple locations, linked by a database and proprietary tools). The charismatic and focused centres are well equipped to handle tacit knowledge, while the focused and virtual centres can process more firm-specific knowledge than a single individual (Moore and Birkinshaw, 1998). In contrast to parent-driven knowledge development, these centres tend to rely more on informal networks, often acting as a hub for knowledge sharing activities. Working in project or so called split egg roles (Evans et al., 2009) where managers and professionals have vertical and horizontal responsibilities, is at the heart of BPs

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focus on global knowledge management in its oil exploration and production business (Hansen and von Oetinger, 2001). Peer groups of business unit heads meet regularly. They are given joint responsibility for capital allocation and for setting unit performance goals, complemented by a host of cross-unit networks on shared areas of interest. These top of the egg knowledge sharing activities take up to 20 per cent of the managers time. The model here is an open market of ideas, says one business unit head. 5 Answer: Scanning involves gaining access to external knowledge from what people read, hear, or experience at first hand. Important observations and innovative ideas can emerge from anywhere in the multinational. Although new insights often come as a by-product of ongoing operations and especially when lateral thinking is encouraged and rewarded in the organisation, specific investments in scanning may also enhance the external acquisition of new knowledge. The establishment of a listening post is a fairly inexpensive way to begin. P&G appointed 70 technology entrepreneurs to work in the companys regional hubs to scan their environments for ideas that might be useful for the corporation worldwide. The Taiwanese PC-manufacturer Acer established a small design shop in the US, through which it acquired skills in ergonomic design that were fed back to the parent organisation (Doz et al., 2001). Ericsson, the Swedish telecommunications firm, created cyberlabs in New York and Palo Alto (next to Stanford University in Silicon Valley) whose task was to monitor developments in these markets and to build relationships with local companies (Birkinshaw, 2004).


Chapter 11
1 Answer: Task-based approaches to selection, development and performance management are fraught with difficulties in situations where the work environment and hence tasks are changing regularly. A global leader may engage in a wide range of activities but tend to use an identifiable set of key behaviourally-linked competencies to undertake these activities. These competencies may be displayed in a wide variety of settings. Thus, the identification and development of these generic and distinctive competencies is seen by many to be a more effective HRM approach than a task-based approach which is focused on a rapidly changing set of job-related activities. 2 Answer: Global leadership development programmes should be designed to encourage participants to challenge their assumptions about themselves, other people they work with, and the cultures in which they work. Participants should be helped to value the diversity of people and activities in different cultures. The programme should help participants to accept ambiguity, work flexibly and to

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avoid the strict application of tried and tested methods of dealing with people encountered in other settings. 3 Answer: Some international organisations appear to take the view that managerial effectiveness is cross-culturally transferable, that is, managers who are effective in their home countries are likely to be effective when working in other national settings so cross-cultural training is not essential. There is another view which simply questions the value and effectiveness of cross-cultural training. Both of these views have been challenged by researchers working in the field (for example, see Osman-Gani, 2000). 4 Answer: First, cross-cultural training may involve formal education programmes which usually involve elements of both in-house and off-site seminars and lectures. In recent years, some of these formal education programmes have also involved the use of distance-learning teaching material. Second, cross-cultural training may involve bespoke or tailored programmes that are designed to meet the specific needs of individual assignees. These bespoke programmes may involve one-to-one coaching and mentoring. Third, cross-cultural training may involve an immersion element, that is, an element which is designed to immerse the participants in the relevant national cultures. Immersion programmes often include international visits which are intended to expose the participants to various aspects of the host country. 5 Answer: The employer and training providers must consider the risk of terrorism as part of an overall risk assessment exercise for expatriates assignment. It is vital to obtain independent advice (for example from the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and local embassies) before deciding on a) the scale of the risk and b) how to proceed with this training. The extent of the training should reflect the scale of the risk. Training providers should be aware that, while training associated with the dangers of terrorism may be essential in certain cases, it may raise anxieties among the expatriates and their families if it is not delivered appropriately.

Chapter 12
1 Answer: The conception of competencies has undergone a dramatic change and has become embedded in the field of HRM with a broader domain. It is becoming increasingly important for companies to identify and develop employees skills, knowledge and attitudes required to successfully perform a job. 2 Answer: Under the process of globalisation, both national and international political and economic environments changed dramatically, in particular during the recent global financial crisis. As for the key external factors, the

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politician economy approach identifies the following elements which can operate both independently and in integrated ways: the system of production, the role of government, the broader social and economic environment, labour market regulations and employment relations institutions. As for internal factors, the strategic choice approach identifies the following key elements: business strategies, organisational structure and the integration between these elements and HR policies and practices. 3 Answer: The major pressures in Japan include a relatively long period of economic recession since 1992, relatively high levels of unemployment, higher labour cost and lower productivity, an aging population, and a mismatch between the availability of jobs and the training/education provided to unemployed people and young graduates. 4 Answer: During the export-expansion period, the major recruitment was related to recruiting blue-collar workers with more informal HR recruitment policy. In addition, colleges and universities graduate recruitment was one of the major recruitment resources. This period and stage of economic development reflects the needs for mass production with relatively low to middle level of skills. However, following economic development to the stage of the technological-intensive period, the demand for high skills with more formal HR policy and more favourable employment conditions became more significant for companies in order to meet the changing labour market requirements. 5 Answer: A number of factors influenced HR recruitment policy in China during the recent economic reform period, including a gradual withdrawal of the governments direct intervention at the firm level, increasing diversity of ownership and labour supply in the labour market. Companies have to face competition in the external labour market to gain capable skilled human resources, and at the same time to develop a more flexible internal labour market approach with a more diverse HR policy for managing different types of employees.


Chaper 13
1 Answer: The terms performance appraisal and performance management are often used interchangeably however, it is critical that we distinguish between the two. Performance appraisal primarily refers to the process of evaluating an individuals performance for a period, typically a year. While performance appraisal is an integral part of the performance management process, there are several other processes that are critical for an effective performance management system. These include (i) goal-setting for the coming year, (ii) providing feedback, on an ongoing basis, to help the employee improve his/her performance, and (iii) creating and sustaining an environment that motivates employees to do their best.

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2 Answer: In order to ensure that both raters and ratees understand the organisations performance appraisal process, and are able to obtain maximum benefit from the process, certain key features should be established and communicated to all concerned. These include such information as: (i) how the evaluation will be conducted (i.e., employee input, types of forms to be used, etc.), (ii) who will conduct the evaluation (i.e., immediate supervisor, divisional head, corporate office, etc.), (iii) the timing of the evaluation (i.e., annually, bi-annually, etc.), (iv) what will be evaluated (traits, behaviours, outcomes), and (v) what will be the outcomes associated with the appraisal (i.e., merit raises, bonuses, promotions, terminations, etc.). 3 Answer: While the primary purpose of performance management might remain the same, multinational corporations have to deal with several issues when designing systems for different countries. Primary among these are (i) cultural differences between home and host countries, (ii) legal guidelines at the host country, (iii) differences in available technology and applications, and (iv) different reward systems. 4 Answer: Expatriate appraisals deserve special attention, since expatriates operate in environments very different from the typical HCN employee. In addition to being physically based in a foreign location, expatriates often have to deal with numerous local issues, such as language, food, transport and culture. These place additional burdens on the expatriate, who must meet their objectives and targets, while dealing with these and similar issues. In addition, expatriates may have few, or no, colleagues from the home country, thus leading to a sense of loneliness, and avoid in terms of a support system. It is critical that managers and HR departments recognise these realities in developing appraisal systems for expatriates.

Chaper 14
1 Answer: By offering unique products and/or services that create opportunities in countries by making certain that the MNCs HR policies, programmes, and practices are consistent with product attributes and brand names as well as the needs of local consumers. For example, an MNC that values new and innovative product development might create novel total reward systems that effectively motivate employees by recognising and rewarding those who share ideas for how to develop new products. 2 Answer: By making sure that the right people are assigned to international operations. For example, when assigning employees to work in foreign nations, MNCs want employees who are sensitive to numerous cultural norms and open to non-traditional ways of approaching work-related problems.

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3 Answer: When compensation and benefits policies lead to fair processes and outcomes, employees are likely to have higher levels of job satisfaction, higher levels of job performance, and are more likely to remain with their MNC. 4 Answer: First, pension plans and saving and investment plans are more difficult to manage between countries due to variations in national rules and regulations. Second, there is also very little portability of retirement plans and health insurance programmes. Third, required benefits arising from national labour or employment legislation such as workers compensation plans have no applicability in foreign environments. 5 Answer: In a domestic setting, the term base salary refers to the amount of pay (e.g., hourly pay or salary) that employees earn on a regular basis for performing their jobs. By comparison, in an international setting, the term base salary refers to either the comparable pay that an employee receives for performing the same job in his/her home country or the amount of pay that an employee would receive for performing the job in the host country.


Chaper 15
1 Answer: It was not until around 2000 that companies realised women are as interested as men in international assignments. Their interest varies according to where the assignment is geographically located in the same way as men. In the 1980s only 3 per cent of women from North American companies were women. By 1996 that amount had doubled more than two times to 14 per cent. The proportion of women expatriates is similar in 2002 for companies from other regions of the world such as Asia and Europe. Increasing competition and changes in corporate business strategies and changes in the women professionals themselves are thought to all contribute to this rapid growth phenomenon. 2 Answer: Women have more opportunity in the present than in any previous era to succeed as global leaders and on global assignments. In the past expatriates were often viewed as marginal to the success of the company whereas in the globalised world they are understood to be central to operations. The global environment is nowadays a more important consideration than previously for many managers wherever they are located. Unlike the past, women now have a major role to play in international management and international assignments. They are perceived by some as model global managers, have more experience than many men in working as outsiders, and as relative remuneration decreases for expatriation as currently is the case the proportion of women working abroad will rise.

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3 Answer: A variety of different IHRM policies and practices are available to companies for developing their employees. The case study reports one approach which brings people together and creates more opportunity for voice and influence in the company. It is important that companies do not discriminate against women in recruitment and selection processes. This means identifying viable candidates, requiring a similar rather than higher level of education and qualifications as men, similar technical competency and experience. Companies using transparent and formal selection processes based on job-specific criteria will tend to select more women for international assignments than those organisations that resort to vague selection criteria and demonstrate more capacity to deselect women. Companies must ensure that women have managers who are prepared to help them to advance their careers and support their individual development. This includes access to formal and informal means of development in leadership and international management. 4 Answer: It is important that companies go beyond the twentieth-century models based on the personal and professional lifestyles of men. Equally, it will be important to go beyond models based primarily on the experiences of multinational companies headquartered in traditionally prosperous countries. We need to understand better the experience of women from economically developing and transitional economies who seek international careers. More broadly, we need to understand the global business and HR strategies of companies headquartered outside of North America, Europe and Japan. The most important question for the future is not simply how we can increase the proportion of women leaders, executives and managers. Rather, the crucial twentyfirst century question is how we can create a society worthy of being bequeathed to future generations. To create such a society, we need corporations worldwide to understand that the most effective leadership comes from women and men. As shown in the case study of Bestfoods, competencies are important for exercising appropriate leadership and international management through ones power and influence skills. More broadly, companies current and future senior leaders needed to replace their previously effective domestic and multi-domestic approaches with globally integrated, cross-culturally interactive competencies. These competencies will enable companies to lead in the twenty-first century. The competencies required include personal traits and personal competencies, interpersonal competencies, global business and global organisational competencies (see Bestfoods case study for more detail). 5 Answer: There are many different and relevant criteria for evaluating the success of international assignments. Some of the areas covered in this chapter include the following points. Individuals should be recognised by companies and supported for their interest in international management and international assignments. Companies must act on the fact that women and men are similarly interested in international assignments and seek successful careers in the global business

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Self-Assessment Answers
environment. The research shows that companies will benefit from ensuring fair and equivalent recruitment and selection criteria that do not discriminate on the basis of gender. Many studies have found that the problem of prejudice against women resides more in their employing company failing to consider and support them than it does a failure of support in the country where the assignment is based. Dual-career marriages are now more the norm than they were previously and so attention has to be given to dealing with couples individual circumstances so that their families and companies can benefit. This dual-career reality requires commitment, perseverance and creativity from all people involved.


Chapter 16
1 Answer: Workfamily usually focuses attention on family concerns, such as child-care or elder care responsibilities that an employee may have. Work-life encompasses a broader range of non-work activities and responsibilities that any worker may experience. These may include not only family responsibilities but also include responsibilities to oneself, ones community, and the many priorities that may or may not have to do with family (Bardoel, 2006). 2 Answer: We define work-life initiatives as those strategies, policies, programmes and practices initiated and maintained in workplaces to address flexibility, quality of work and life, and workfamily conflict. Examples include: flexible working arrangements, such as part-time work, flexible work scheduling, or work from home; leave entitlements, such as career breaks, parental leave, or elder care leave; and employee support programmes, such as phased retirement, employer-provided child-care, and health and well-being programmes and services provided by the employer. 3 Answer: Numerous tensions can be identified in the management of worklife in a global context. For example, managers in MNCs need to balance the often conflicting needs of global efficiencies and coordination (integration) with responsiveness to factors such as political pressures in each local market (differentiation) (Doz and Prahalad, 1991; Edwards and Kuruvilla, 2005). The paradox of think globally, act locally is a dilemma for HR professionals working in MNCs especially during periods when there are unprecedented levels of global mergers, acquisitions and international growth. We postulate that these tensions may be expressed as alternative priorities and concerns at different levels (e.g. strategy/ policy vs. operational); in different organisational units (e.g., headquarters vs. subsidiary); in different functions (e.g., HR vs. line management); and between management and employees. Other examples of tensions that may permeate the organisational boundaries of an MNC include tensions between economic

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International Human Resource Management

and social/moral concerns, institutional requirements and organisational needs, or between collective and individual concerns (e.g., organisational performance and gender equity). 4 Answer: Drawing from the literature on managing paradox (Poole and Van De Ven, 1989), we note four potential strategies: 1 Opposition accept that paradox exists and use it constructively; e.g. the case of the MNC that had made several unsuccessful attempts of trying to develop a global work-life strategy. The company had been operating in its various locations different work-life programmes and the US-based headquarters worklife team received increased requests for help, information and directions from its international locations. In response the headquarters work-life team created an overarching way to help these organisations by communicating a companywide philosophy of supported work climates. This involved creating a tool that explained the philosophy of work-life demonstrating why the MNC operations in the US were implementing work-life policies and programmes and assessed their implications for locations outside the US 2 Spatial separation clarify level of analysis and connections between them; e.g. place the responsibility for implementing work-life and diversity initiatives in the hands of the geographic managers. Give them accountability by measuring it on their scorecards. Declare what success looks like. 3 Temporal separation take time into account; e.g. organisations need to consider how far along the globalisation journey their company is and also indicate how work-life initiatives are part of the global brand. So, if the journey has been long and a strong commitment has been developed over many years (e.g. IBM and Shell) then it is easier to mandate for more standardised work-life policies. Therefore, decisions made on the degree that policies are global need to be based on how global employees are. As an example, if employees are often moving between countries, then there will need to be more consistency. 4 Synthesis develop new terms to resolve paradox; e.g. an MNC developed a long term leave policy, which came about because the company was losing valuable people. Turnover rates were analysed and in particular regretted losses were identified. The new programme announcement was included on the company website. 5 Answer: Table 16.1 summarises the responsibilities for global managers line managers, and HR managers at the local level.

Chapter 17
1 Answer: The issue here relates to the way ones understanding of MNCs. There are critical views which see MNCs as beyond the scope of regulatory control and being

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Self-Assessment Answers
able to play off different systems. They are able to pressurise national governments and local administration systems into complying with their demands. However, there is an alternative view that argues that the political arena remains important and that there are limits to the mobility of MNCs. They are also subject to intervention by internationally coordinated states and social organisations which can force them to compromise on various issues. Much may also depend on the type of MNC and its internal ethical position. 2 Answer: Much will depend on the extent to which systems of government such as the European Union are able to develop and exert their influence. It is likely that such activity will take place at three levels. The first is the extent of bi-lateral relations between specific nation states partnership around economic issues. The second is the way more continental systems of regulation such as the European Union may evolve. The European Union is seen as a major space for governance and new forms of state coordination. The third depends on international bodies such as the United Nations which whilst constrained by specific superpowers may be able to increasingly coordinate policy and strategies on a range of issues. 3 Answer: There is a growing body of literature on the role of such organisations. They can place political pressure on major corporations and they have very innovative approaches to the media and its uses. Companies such as Nike have been exposed to such campaigns and have needed to respond to them. What is more, such organisations as NGOs are able to work with specific governments and create political alliances around such topics as child labour and its elimination. They form part of a global civil society which works with and alongside systems of regulation in some cases. 4 Answer: There is a real interest in the role of international voluntary codes of conduct and agreements on a range of employment issues. These are internal and external to the firm. They are normally not sanctioned by law and remain voluntary. However, they can become a very important point of reference within the internal industrial relations and HRM systems of MNCs. They can be linked to campaigns, global union structures and even local state initiatives to actively seek MNCs to comply on a range of issues. 5 Answer: There are many ways in which the question of regulation can be weaved into the learning agenda. The law modules have an obvious interest. However, there are areas such as HRM, the Management of Diversity, Business Ethics and others which can be more open to the question of regulation and intervention. The crisis of neo-liberal capitalism since 200809 means that there is a greater degree of concern for being more committed to regulation, in theory at least how long this will last is a matter of debate.


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International Human Resource Management

Chapter 18
1 Answer: Distributive justice is the main concern here. If Lenovo gives these foreign employees special treatment, the Chinese employees are likely to demand the same treatment, as they too, have privacy needs. If these demands are met, it will lead to a huge increase in cost for Lenovo. If these demands are not met, it will most probably lead to resentment and a sense of unfairness amongst the Chinese employees due to differential treatment. Here it is clear that equal treatment of all employees fails to meet individual needs, but an individual-oriented policy is not a viable solution. 2 Answer: Managing foreign employees and overseas graduate returnees are diversity issues related to individual differences and cross-cultural management, whereas gender equality issues have more of a collective nature with potential legal implications. However, the solution of the former also has collective implications. 3 Answer: Not all haiguis are spoilt and rotten apples. Equally, not all home-grown graduate employees are good apples. You need to focus on those individuals who are causing the problem and deal with them directly. No preferential treatment should be given to those who shout loud. Team-working spirit should be emphasised and cultivated. Rewards (e.g. bonus, development opportunities and promotion) should be given based on merit and performance outcomes. 4 Answer: No, it is not. It is a well-known fact that women in different countries around the world commonly face a glass ceiling in corporate life. Women are more likely than men to be the casualty of organisational politics. Women are also likely to face a glass cliff, i.e. be put in leadership positions that can be described as precarious and thus have a higher risk of failure, either because they are in organisational units that are in crisis or because they are not given the resources and support needed for success. 5 Answer: Ask the HR team that is in charge of the development of the global DM programme to visit as many operations as possible in different countries to gain greater local understanding. Launch a global forum for diversity management that consists of HR managers, line manager representatives and employee representatives. Make sure the forum is championed by one of the corporate vice presidents. Allow individual countries to develop their own DM initiatives based on broad guidelines developed by the forum. Share good practices and lessons learned among members in the forum and encourage them to take them back to their home country for wider dissemination. Deepen the implementation of the Mobility Plan to create a global flow that is multi-directional and multi-destination. Ensure that DM agenda is part of the Mobility Plan of management development. Monitor and measure DM activities and outcomes at corporate and operational levels, but remain aware that these are all much easier said than done!

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