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UNDERSTANDING THE CROSSCULTURAL FACTOR
Overview of Lecture
Part I Culture and International Business Part II Theories & Models
Kluckholm and Strodbeck (Cultural Orientation) Hall (Cultural Context) Laurent (Culture, Status and Function) Hofstede (and the Workplace) Trompenaars (Consultatn’s Contribution)
Part III Cross-cultural Management Communication
- Appropriate Business Communication Across Cultures - A Transaction Model
PART I Culture and International Business
Why study intercultural communication in business contexts?
Difficulties in developing globalized products:
Diversity of taste and demand Hoecklin, L. 1995. Managing Cultural Differences: Strategies for Competitive Advantage, The Economist Intelligence Unit / Addison Wesley. Diversity of worldwide industry standards Difficulty in managing global companies and the lack of agreement on organizational structures and systems Subsidiaries need to develop their own abilities, talents and local knowledge
Think Globally. Act Locally.
~ Derek Torrington, 1994
Where does culture fit into the business equation?
Decisions taken by a company are usually influenced by: • internal factors such as strategy, goals, scope of operations, internal resources including management systems and organizational culture • and factors in the external business
Mead, Richard, 1998. International Management: Cross cultural dimensions. 2nd Edition. Blackwell. Pp 15.
Cross-cultural Management Skills
•understand the nature of culture and how it influences behaviour in the workplace •learn about specific cultures – the other’s and your own •recognize the differences between cultures •Implementation of structures
Beamish, P. W. and Calof, J. L., 1989. International business education: a corporate view. Journal of International Business Studies, Fall, pp 553-64.
Ignoring Cultural Diversity
This policy is followed when: •the management lack skills and resources to handle the diversity •the task offers no opportunities for deriving positive effects from diversity •the negative effects outweigh the positive effects •refusing to recognize diversity seems likely to minimize the negative effects
PART II Theories and Models
1. Kluckhohn and Strodtbeck on Cultural Orientations
Kluckhohn, F. R. and Strodtbeck, F. L. 1961. Variations in Value Orientations, Peterson, New York.
Range of Variations
Good (changeable/unchangeab le) Evil A mixture of good and evil
What is the nature of people?
What is the person’s relationship to nature?
What is the person’s relationship to other people?
Dominant In harmony Subjugation Lineal (hierarchical) Collateral (collectivist)
Orientations 4. What is the modality of human activity? Range of Variations Doing Being Containing Future Present Past Private Public Mixed
5. What is the temporal focus of human activity?
6. What is the conception of space?
Critique of the Kluckhohn-Strodtbeck Model Weaknesses
• the authors were not centrally concerned with management studies and did not describe the implications for management • the orientations and variations are not precisely defined • interpretations are bound to be subjective
Strength s • cultures
can be compared distinct dimensions
• comparative models apply to crosscultural management • analysis of predominant variations within the national culture does not accurately predict: - the values of subcultural minorities; the values practiced in different industries and organizations and the values practiced in exceptional cases.
2. Edward T. Hall and Cultural Contexts
Hall, E. T., 1976. Beyong Culture, Anchor Press / Doubleday
Characteristics of HighContext cultures
lasting relationships is economical, fast
range of communicative expressions in authority are personally responsible for the actions of
In high-context cultures …
between persons are spoken rather than written and Outsiders are distinguished patterns are ingrained and relatively slow to change
Characteristics of LowContext Cultures
relationships are made explicit
is diffused are written rather
In low-context cultures…
and Outsiders are less closely distinguished patterns are relatively fast to change
Critique of Hall’s Model
insights rather than quantitative data in understanding how members of different cultures develop business relationships
3. André Laurent: Culture, Status & Function
Laurent, A., 1983. The cultural diversity of Western conceptions of management, Internnational Studies of Management and Organization, 13 (1-2), pp 75-96.
Adler, N.J., Campbell, N. C., and Laurent, A., 1989. In search of appropriate methodology: from outside the People’s Republic of China, Journal of International Business Studies, Spring, pp 61-74
1. Perceptions of the organization as political systems • Authority systems • Role formulation systems and • Hierarchical relationship systems
Laurent’s 4 parameters
•how far the manager carries his/her status into the wider context outside the workplace •the manager’s capacity to bypass levels in the hierarchy •the manager as expert in contrast to the manager as facilitator
“through their professional activity, managers play an important role in society”
Denmark UK Netherlands Germany Sweden USA Switzerland Italy France 1983:80
32% 40% 45% 46% 54% 52% 65% 74% 76% ~ Laurent,
“in order to have efficient work relationships, it is often necessary to bypass the hierarchical line”
Sweden 22% UK 31% USA 32% Denmark 37% Netherlands 39% Switzerland 41% Belgium 42% France 42% Germany 46% Italy 75% China 66% ~ Laurent, 1983:86 and Adler et all, 1989:64
“it is important for a manager to have at hand precise answers to most of the questions that his subordinates may raise about their work”
Sweden Netherlands USA Denmark UK Switzerland Belgium Germany France Italy Indonesia China Japan
10% 18% 23% 27% 38% 44% 46% 53% 66% 73% 74% 78%
~ Adler et al, 1989:69
4. Geert Hofstede: Culture & the Workplace
Hofstede, G., 1980. Cultures Consequences: International Differences in Work-related Values, Sage Hofstede, G., 1984. Cultures Consequences: International Differences in Work-related Values, abridged edn, Sage, Beverly Hills Hofstede, G., 1991. Cultures and
• power distance – the distance between individuals at different levels of a hierarchy in an organization. • uncertainty avoidance – more or less need to avoid uncertainties about the future • individualism vs collectivism – the relations between the individual and his / her fellows • masculinity vs femininity – the division
Critique of Hofstede’s Model
that National Territory are the limits that culture correspond to also worked within a single industry difficulties
Strengths most practical to management problems
between national cultures possible relevant
Sondergaard, M., 1994. Research note: Hofstede’s Consequences: a study of reviews, citations and replications, Organizational Studies, 15(3), pp 447-56
Smith, P. B., Dugan, S., and Trrompanaars, F., 1996. National culture and the values of organizational employees: a dimensional analysis across 43 nations, Journal of Crosscultural Psychology. 27, pp 231-64
5. Fons Trompenaars and the Consultant’s Contribution
Trompenaars, F., 1993. Riding the Waves of Culture. Nicholas Brealey, London
4. Relationships and rules; Universalism vs Particularism 5. The group and the individual; Collectivism vs Individualism 6. Feelings and relationships; Neutral vs Emotional 7. How far we get involved; Specific vs Diffuse
8. How we accord Status 9. How we manage Time 10. How we relate to Nature
Critique of Trompenaars’ Parameters
of this approach is that it draws together and applies ideas contributed by a range of scholars like in the value of Trompenaars own research. The pool of informants is vaguely defined and lacks homogeneity
Cross-cultural Management Communication
When communicating, consider the following:
What is appropriate communication in different cultures?
WHOM WHAT HOW WHEN WHERE
The Transactional Model
Participant A decides what to communicate encodes a message transmits the message decodes B’s message
B decides what to communicate encodes a message transmits the message decodes A’s message
situational influences situational
Hall, E. T., 1959. The Silent Language. Doubleday.
Stance Gesture Voice
Cheryl M. Cordeiro email@example.com
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