Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Culture, Management, Business, Countries, Power, America, Distance, Brazil

Pages: 6

Words: 1650

Published: 2020/11/03

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SECTION I: Dimensions of Management Culture Comparison Chart.

SECTION 2: Analysis of Section I Results
How do the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations differ from each other?
Germany, France and the Netherlands represent the same region of the World – continental Western Europe, but their cultures differ a lot in terms of Power Distance and Masculinity. Due to significant historical differences among different European countries, it is difficult to make generalizations about business ethics in entire Western Europe (Mele, as cited in Ardichvili, Jondle, & Kowske, 2009.) French culture is rather hierarchical, while in Germany and Netherlands the power distance is much lower. For example, according to a survey conducted by Hofstede, French employees believed that their supervisor had to be consulted in the majority of cases only because he’s a boss (as cited in Den Hartog, 2012,) while in Germany and Netherlands, where economies are based mainly on middle class, the governance is more democratic, and the bosses are more open to communication.
In these countries the hierarchy in companies are made just for convenience, not to divide the “stratas” within organizations and within the whole society. In Germany, the culture is more masculine, or based on background of competition and achievement, while in France and especially in the Nethwerlands, the social roles for both genders are often overlapped; the care and interpersonal relationship and communication are valued over material success (Vitell, Nwachukwu & Barnes, 1993.) The Netherlands, with low level of power distance and masculinity, high levels of individualism, represent a society with “’green” or ‘sustainable’ values” (Husted, as cited in Jandt, 2004.)

How do the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations differ from the USA?

The U.S. business ethics approaches differ from those in Germany, France and the Netherlands in terms of uncertainty avoidance and pragmatism. In USA, there’s a high openness to new experiences, high level of acceptance of innovations in business and technology, and the Americans tend to normative culture, emphasizing short-term success and quick results (The Hofstede Center.) The French, as well as people from the other analysed countries, don’t like surprises and prefer stable and well-predictable environment. Stability and emotional safety are preferred also in Germany, where culture is raised on philosophical heritage of Hegel, Fichte and Kant, and where rational thinking, reasoning and planning valued highly. Germany also ranks the highest among all the compared counties in pragmatism. While in the U.S. “legalism” dominates in business ethics, and corporate codes of ethics prevail in many companies; in the analysed European countries formal ethics programs are not as widespread, and attitude to ethical values are norms are less universal and more context-dependable (Ardichvili, Jondle, & Kowske, 2009.)

How are the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations similar to each other?

The Netherlands, Germany and France are very similar in the dimensions of individualism, uncertainty avoidance and long-term orientation. All these countries emphasize uniqueness of an individual, provide their citizens with wide opportunities to self-realization; in all of these country the “Black Swans” of uncertainty are not welcomed, and in all of the described European countries the business is oriented at the long-term values and sustainable growth. For example, there’re a lot of family businesses in these countries, that are maintained by generations and operate within decades and, in some cases, even longer, transforming in an evolutionary way.

How are the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations similar to the USA?

The U.S. scores similarly with Germany and Netherlands in power distance, emphasizing the equal rights concept and valuing professionalism over authority. In all these countries enterpeneurship culture is highly developed, and the middle class constitutes the sufficient part of the economy; information flow between top-managers and non-managerial staff is free and rather active. And, finally, USA and Western European countries are individualistic in terms of business culture. People are unique and differ a lot from each other, but they have equal opportunities to development and success in what they choose to do.
SECTION I: Dimensions of Management Culture Comparison Chart.
SECTION 2: Analysis of Section I Results
How do the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations differ from each other?
Canada, Mexico and Japan respresent various regional clusters of countries, and their approaches in business ethics vary a lot in many dimensions such as power distance, individualism, uncertainty avoidance and pragmatism. Canada represents the lowest level of power distance; while, in contrast, in Mexico the hierarchical gap is huge and the interaction between various levels in any organizations are spoiled due to domination of the unique features such as “mordida” (miscommunication between the bosses or “patrones” and ordinary employees) and “machismo” (avoidance of responsibility and criticism, Cogan, & Collins, 2000.) In Canada, with its “Western” ethical approach, orientation at individualism is very high, when in Japan and Mexico collectivism prevails. For Mexico, people are strongly commited to their groups such as a family, extended family, or work team. Loyalty in Mexican business culture is paramount, and dominates over the majority societal rules. The strong relationships and mutual responsibility are highly valued. In Japan, with it’s phenomena of “lifetime employment”, the interests of an organization are also valued above individual’s interests, and the loyalty is unconditional. In these two countries the public oversight doesn’t encourage individuals to differ a lot from a “norma.”
The same two countries, Mexico and Japan, demonstrate high uncertainty avoidance. The Japanese spend a lot of time on feasibility studies, on risk management procedures, preparing for the future; they maintain a great number of traditions and rituals kept by centuries, emphasise structures and appropriate codes of behavior, that’s why Japan ranks among the countries with the highest level of aversion towards ambiguity (Frost, 2013.) Japan is also a society with long-term future orientation. An individual’s life in Japan is considered to be just a moment as compared with eternity; there’s a culture emphasizing continuity of traditions between generations, value thrift and perseverance; the share of savings in this country is relatively high (Hofstede, 2011.) With their pragmatic and somehow fatalistic approach (“all you can do in your life is to do your best”), Japanese value stability and sustainability of their corporates, which mission is to serve the owners and society as a whole “for many generations to come” (The Hofstede Centre.)
How do the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations differ from the USA?
Mexico and Japan differ from the U.S. in the following dimensions: power distance, individuality and uncertainty avoidance. Mobile, facilitating entrepreneurship, valuing highly both success and experience gained from losses, susceptible to innovation and individualistic Americans seems to be the exact opposite of collectivistic, change-averse Japanese and Mexicans. While in the U.S. “getting things done” in business setting is a top priority, Mexicans and Japanese are more relationship-oriented (Kopp, 2012.) But with their passion to the highest quality, Japanese are similar to Americans, but instead of simple performance, they value quality as an art and philosophy. Despite great similarity of Canada and USA, Canada ranks higher in pragmatism and relatively lower in individualism and masculinity.

How are the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations similar to each other?

Mexicans and Japanese, despite differences in history and mentality, are similar to each other in terms of power distance, individuality and uncertainty avoidance. But if in Japan power distance is based on respect and also on common sense (existence of several hierarchical levels in decision-making ensures better quality of decisions), in Mexico, where the society is also hierarchical and everyone knows his place, the situation is different. The management is often autocratic, the employees expect to be instructed directly what to do, but communication between the hierarchical levels is poor, especially as concerned negative information (The Hofstede Centre.) In Canada and especially in Mexico the business cultures tend to be normative rather than pragmatic. Canada and Mexico are very similar in terms of short-term orientation, representing normative societies.

How are the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations similar to the USA?

Canada is very similar to the U.S., because the heritage of these two societies was found in Europe with strong connections to the British Isles. In both countries hierarchies exist, but seniors are open to communication and easily accessible by their subordinates. The bosses support and maintain high standards of ethical behavior (Ardichvili, Jondle, & Kowske, 2009.) Individualism ranks very high and is a significant factor in the business environment of both Americans and Canadians. The low index of pragmatism orientation evidences a strong commitment to short-term values, “living in today’s World” and freedom from baggage of the past. For these countries, the workforce is highly mobile and flexible. All the country in this cluster are masculine with orientation at success, winning in competitive rivalry. Men and women have diffent, often clearly defined social roles. In business settings, initiativeness, assertivity and decisiveness are encouraged. The tendency to masculinity is the highest in Japan and the lowest in Canada.
SECTION I: Dimensions of Management Culture Comparison Chart.
SECTION 2: Analysis of Section I Results
How do the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations differ from each other?
South Korea, Brazil and Saudi Arabia have different management cultures in the dimensions of masculinity/femininity and pragmatism. In Saudi Arabia, where the business behavior is governed by the Islamic views (Ardichvili, Jondle, & Kowske, 2009,) commitment and dedication to work is encouraged; achievements, money, accumulation of wealth are respected more than behaviors related to care about others and establishing good relationships. The strong business ethic is perceived as an ideal for most of business people in Saudi Arabia (Robertson, Al-Khatib, & Al-Habib, 2002.) The masculine orientation of society correlates with the highest rank in the dimension of power distance (Sapienza, 2008.) South Corea and Brazil have more feminine ethical values with an emphasize on equality, work-life balance, high quality of life. In South Korea, for example, recognized an “Asian Tiger” or an “Asian Dragon” for its fast-grown economic prosperity, people tend to work in order to live rather than live in order to work (Bodine, 2013.) The social functions of gender and features attributed to gender, often overlap.
At the same time, South Korea ranks among the top World countries in terms of long-term orientation with its highly pragmatic culture. In contast to other countries such as Brazil and Saudi Arabia, South Korean are future-oriented, highly adaptive and pay high repect for traditions, with the strong dialogue between generations, based on respect and learning (Williams, 2014.) Brazil and Saudi Arabia have low-LTO cultures. There’re some country-specific cultural featues. For example, in Brazil, the business relationship-building time can be quite long, as Brazilian want to know who they’re doing business with; people do business with people, not with depersonalized companies; face-to-face meetings valued higher than online communication (Véras & Véras, 2010.)
How do the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations differ from the USA?
In all the analyzed foreign countries the power distance is greater than in the U.S., as well as uncertainty avoidance, while collectivism dominates over individualism. These are the countries whose cultures are built on traditions and respect to hierarchy. Higher power distance in Brazil, South Corea and Saudi Arabia manifest through strong hierarchies in organizations, greater level of centralization as compared to the U.S., larger gaps in respect, authority and also in level of remuneration between higher and lowel hierarchical levels. In decision making, middle management and non-managerial employees need to consult their bosses (Williams, 2014), while in the U.S. the level of autonomy in decision making is higher, the authority and responsibility is often distributed; and top-management relies on professionalism and leadership skills of their subordinates.
Being strongly collectivistic societies, South Corea, Brazil and Saudi Arabia have strong social connections with their extended families, express greater level of loyalty to their organizations (in some cases expressed in lifelong employment); the collective goals are valued over personal; in contrast with the U.S. business ethics, the sufficient difference from other group members is discouraged, and personal aims, intentions, desires and emotions are often suppressed for the benefit of common business and positive work environment. As for “individualism-collectivism” scale, USA and South Korea can be considered as having “polar” approaches.
How are the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations similar to each other?
In South Korea, Brazil and Saudi Arabia the power distance is high, as described above, the collectivism prevails over individualism, and uncertainty avoidance dominates over openness for new experiences and also for technology changes. For business environment it means similarity in unequal power distribution acceptance, domination of traditions and norms, obedience to strict authority and preserve the order of things as they are. Willingness to support the organizational and societal goals and individual’s commitments to group values is much more important than being unique and pursuing personal goals.

How are the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations similar to the USA?

Saudi Arabia is similar to the U.S. in terms of masculinity, emphasizing such attributes of masculine society as ambition, competitiveness, assertiveness, achievement, having also the normative-oriented society. Brazil is similar to the USA in short-term orientation. The organizations, as well as societies as whole in these countries have a set of strictly set norms, identifying what is good and what is bad and encouraging the particular forms of behavior in business and social settings. Obedience to these norms and adherence to the standards is brought up from the early age.
SECTION I: Dimensions of Management Culture Comparison Chart.
SECTION 2: Analysis of Section I Results
How do the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations differ from each other?
Like a majority of Latin American countries, Brazil and Venezuela have high level of collectivism, correlating positively with high ranks in power distance (Hofstede, as cited in Elvira & Davila, 2007.) It means that people are highly dependable on their groups or organizations and also rely on their group leaders to a high extent. Organizational management in such countries as Venezuela and Brazil tend to be group management rather than management of individual professionals. In contrast with Latin American countries, Italy ranks high in individualism. Italy is considered by some researchers as one of the most collectivistic societies in the World (Trompenaars, as cited in Welford & Prescott, 2001), but in Hofstede’s model of dimensions of management culture it ranks relatively high in individualism (The Hofstede Center.) These differences can have roots in different timeframes and various methodological approaches of these studies. According to Kobylarek, people in Italy think of themselves as of unique individuals rather than group members and classify themselves and others basing at invidivual traits (2013.) Some scholars believe that in individualistic societies such as Italy, people manage to unite their efforts for the benefit of the entire society much better than in collectivistic societies, where there’s a lot of small groups or clans, but this point of view is rather controversial.
Venezuela and Italy are masculine societies, while Brazil ranks much lower in this dimension, showing an intermediate (49) score (The Hofstede center.) In Italy, there’s a balance between ego-orientation and relationship-orientation, between business-oprientation and quality of life, people value both wealth and achievement. At the same time, as the Epicureans, Italians value leisure, having a good time eating out with colleagues, friends and also adore their families.In Italy and Venezuela, where high scores in masculinity are combines with high ambiguity avoidance, life can be rather stressful and very difficult, and people, to release the stress and lower the tension, enjoy long breaks in work for meal, coffee and chat (The Hofstede Center.)
Venezuela and Brazil have normative cultures. Venezuela, scoring 16 in long-term orientation dimension, is a classic example of a traditional society, “characterized by a ‘shame’ culture and people moral involvements” (Fougere & Moulettes, 2007.) Italy, by contrast, has a very pragmatic culture, understanding the complexity of life and flexibly adjusting norms and practices to socio-cultural and business context.
How do the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations differ from the USA?
Power distance, a strong hierarchy and a gap in powers and incomes between various managerial levels are much higher in the analyzed foreign countries than in the U.S. The highest power distance is in Venezuela, where business hierarchies are defined very clearly, in particular, in family-owned businesses (University of Birmingham.) In decision making, the final word is always up to senior management. The work relations, especially between people from different hierarchical level, tend to be formal and respectful. Cronyism between senior management and subordinates and not common, but, at the same time, people pay great attention to establishing good relations with their business partners and colleagues. In the U.S. the power distance is much less, and a leader in organization is a first among the equals. There can be situational leadership and temporary leadership, that people can take responsibility for a decision or for some kind of project within organization, the hierarchy is not emphasized that much.
In the U.S., like in many Anglo-American countries, people are very open to changes and innovations, while in Brazil, Venezuela and Italy, like in other Latin cultures, people prefer stability. Rules, structure and expertise dominate in their business ethics, people prefer processes and actions that are already familiar to them, risk management regulations and procedures are very well elaborated (Smit, 2012.)
How are the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations similar to each other?
Venezuela, Italy and Brazil have high scores in power distance and also in uncertainty avoidance. All of the analyzed countries are Latin cultures with at least a part of their characteristics inherited from the Roman empire, where central authority was very strong, and hierarchy was clearly determined with a little change over relatively long period of time. This heritage from the historical past is reflected in the today’s culture: “centralization fostered large power distance and a stress on laws fostered strong uncertainty avoidance” (Hofstede, 2011.)

How are the dimensions of management culture of the 3 foreign nations similar to the USA?

There’re not so many similarities between the U.S. and Latin countries. The USA, like Venezuela and Italy, scores high in masculinity dimension with Brazil only a little less oriented towards masculine values of competition, achievement and material wealth and existence of serious gender differences in social and business functions as well as wage gap. Like Venezuela and Brazil, the U.S. have normative and short-time oriented business culture with strong commitment for traditions, protecting a “face” and orientation towards short-term success.

References

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