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Managing Across Cultures

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1 Managing Across Cultures
chapter five Managing Across Cultures McGraw-Hill/Irwin Copyright © 2009 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

2 Chapter Objectives The specific objectives of this chapter are: EXAMINE the strategic dispositions that characterize responses to different cultures. DISCUSS cross-cultural differences and similarities. REVIEW cultural differences in select countries and regions, and note some of the important strategic guidelines for doing business in each.

3 Homework Page 153/1-3 You can work in teams of 2

4 Strategic Predispositions
Four distinct predispositions toward doing things in a particular way: Ethnocentric Polycentric Regio-centric Geocentric

5 Strategic Predispositions
Ethnocentric predisposition A nationalistic philosophy of management whereby the values and interests of the parent company guide strategic decisions.

6 Strategic Predispositions
Polycentric predisposition A philosophy of management whereby strategic decisions are tailored to suit the cultures of the countries where the MNC operates.

7 Strategic Predispositions
Regio-centric predisposition A philosophy of management whereby the firm tries to blend its own interests with those of its subsidiaries on a regional basis.

8 Strategic Predispositions
Geocentric predisposition A philosophy of management whereby the company tries to integrate a global systems approach to decision making.

9 Orientation of an MNC


11 Meeting the Challenge The Globalization Imperative: Belief that one worldwide approach to doing business is key to efficiency and effectiveness. Many factors facilitate the need to develop unique strategies for different cultures

12 The Globalization Imperative:
Many factors facilitate the need to develop unique strategies for different cultures: The Globalization Imperative: Diversity of worldwide industry standards Continual demand by local customers for differentiated products Importance of being insider as in case of customer who prefers to “buy local” Difficulty of managing global organizations Need to allow subsidiaries to use own abilities and talents unconstrained by headquarters

13 Globalization vs. National Responsiveness
Advertising (for example) French Avoid reasoning or logic Advertising predominantly emotional, dramatic, symbolic Spots viewed as cultural events – art for sake of money – and reviewed as if they were literatures or films

14 Globalization vs. National Responsiveness
Advertising (for example) British Value laughter above all else Typical broad, self-deprecating British commercial amuses by mocking both advertiser and consumer

15 Globalization vs. National Responsiveness
Advertising (for example) Germans Want factual and rational advertising Typical German spot features standard family of 2 parents, two children, and grandmother

16 Globalization vs. National Responsiveness
How to add value to marketing: you must be aware that your international audience will frequently have different tastes, needs and customs Tailor advertising message to particular culture Stay abreast of local market conditions; don’t assume all markets basically same

17 Globalization vs. National Responsiveness
How to add value to marketing: Your plan will need to address many other factors, such as: payment (international transactions and currency exchanges) paperwork (increased documentation), practices (different cultural, social and business styles) partnerships (strategic alliances to strengthen your market presence) protection (increased risks relating to payment, intellectual property or travel)

18 Globalization vs. National Responsiveness
How to add value to marketing: Know strengths and weaknesses of MNC subsidiaries; provide them assistance in addressing local demands Give subsidiary more autonomy; let it respond to changes in local demand

19 Cultural Variations

20 Cultural Differences and Similarities
Parochialism- The tendency to view the world through one’s eyes and perspectives Problem for managers from advanced economies who believe that their knowledge is sufficient for doing business in less developed countries Simplification- The process of exhibiting the same orientation toward different cultural groups

21 Cross-Cultural Differences and Similarities
Similarities across cultures: Not possible to do business same way in every global location Procedures and strategies that work well at home can’t be adopted overseas without modifications

22 Similarities of US firms with foreign companies:
As size of company increases, commitment decreases As structure of company becomes more employee focused, commitment increases A positive organizational climate increases employee commitment Behavior Management NOT Culturally Bound!

23 Similarities Across Cultures
Managers in US and Russian firms Managers performed similar functions Devoting effort to communication and networking increased performance and promotion opportunities Similar types of interventions improved performance (Hawthorne effect?)

24 Similarities Across Cultures
US and Korean employees Similar antecedents influenced organizational commitment (position in hierarchy, tenure, age) Other factors that increased commitment Size of firm (larger firms = less commitment) Employee focus (greater focus = more commitment) Perceptions of organization (positive view = more commitment)

25 Differences Across Cultures
In criteria used to evaluate personnel Netherlands France Germany Britain Reality Analysis Helicopter Leadership Imagination Imagination Analysis Leadership Helicopter Reality Leadership Analysis Reality Imagination Helicopter Helicopter Imagination Reality Analysis Leadership In the norms and rules regulating Incentive plans, pay equity, and severance Holiday and maternity leave Other HR functions In labor relations and role of labor unions In job design and employee training programs

26 Cross-Cultural Differences and Similarities
Differences across cultures Far more differences than similarities found in cross-cultural research Wages, compensation, pay equity, maternity leave Importance of criteria used in evaluation of employees

27 Cultural Clusters

28 International Human Resource Management

29 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions
Doing Business in China The Chinese place values and principles above money and expediency. Business meetings typically start with pleasantries such as tea and general conversation about the guest’s trip to the country, local accommodations, and family. The Chinese host will give the appropriate indication for when a meeting is to begin and when the meeting is over. Once the Chinese decide who and what is best, they tend to stick with these decisions. Although slow in formulating a plan of action, once they get started, they make fairly good progress.

30 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions: China
In negotiations, reciprocity is important. If the Chinese give concessions, they expect some in return. Because negotiating can involve a loss of face, it is common to find Chinese carrying out the whole process through intermediaries. During negotiations, it is important not to show excessive emotion of any kind. Anger or frustration is viewed as antisocial and unseemly. Negotiations should be viewed with a long-term perspective. Those who will do best are the ones who realize they are investing in a long-term relationship.

31 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions
Doing Business in Russia Build personal relationships with partners. When there are contract disputes, there is little protection for the aggrieved party because of the time and effort needed to legally enforce the agreement. Use local consultants. Because the rules of business have changed so much in recent years, it pays to have a local Russian consultant working with the company. Ethical behavior in the United States is not always the same as in Russia. For example, it is traditional in Russia to give gifts to those with whom one wants to transact business. Be patient. In order to get something done in Russia, it often takes months of waiting.

32 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions: Russia
Russians like exclusive arrangements and often negotiate with just one firm at a time. Russians like to do business face-to-face. So when they receive letters or faxes, they often put them on their desk but do not respond to them. Keep financial information personal. Russians wait until they know their partner well enough to feel comfortable before sharing financial data. Research the company. In dealing effectively with Russian partners, it is helpful to get information about this company, its management hierarchy, and how it typically does business.

33 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions: Russia
Stress mutual gain. The Western idea of “win–win” in negotiations also works well in Russia. Clarify terminology. The language of business is just getting transplanted in Russia so double-check and make sure that the other party clearly understands the proposal, knows what is expected and when, and is agreeable to the deal. Be careful about compromising or settling things too quickly because this is often seen as a sign of weakness. Russians view contracts as binding only if they continue to be mutually beneficial, so continually show them the benefits associated with sticking to the deal.

34 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions
Doing business in India It is important to be on time for meetings. Personal questions should not be asked unless the other individual is a friend or close associate. Titles are important, so people who are doctors or professors should be addressed accordingly. Public displays of affection are considered to be inappropriate, so one should refrain from backslapping or touching others.

35 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions: India
Beckoning is done with the palm turned down; pointing often is done with the chin. When eating or accepting things, use the right hand because the left is considered to be unclean. The namaste gesture can be used to greet people; it also is used to convey other messages, including a signal that one has had enough food. Bargaining for goods and services is common; this contrasts with Western traditions, where bargaining might be considered rude or abrasive.

36 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions
Doing business in France When shaking hands with a French person, use a quick shake with some pressure in the grip. It is extremely important to be on time for meetings and social occasions. Being “fashionably late” is frowned on. During a meal, it is acceptable to engage in pleasant conversation, but personal questions and the subject of money are never brought up. Visiting businesspeople should try very hard to be cultured and sophisticated.

37 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions: France
The French tend to be suspicious of early friendliness in the discussion and dislike first names, taking off jackets, or disclosure of personal or family details. In negotiations the French try to find out what all of the other side’s aims and demands are at the beginning, but they reveal their own hand only late in the negotiations. The French do not like being rushed into making a decision, and they rarely make important decisions inside the meeting. The French tend to be very precise and logical in their approach to things, and will often not make concessions in negotiations unless their logic has been defeated.

38 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions
Doing business in Arab countries It is important never to display feelings of superiority, because this makes the other party feel inferior. Let one’s action speak for itself and not brag or put on a show of self-importance. One should not take credit for joint efforts. A great deal of what is accomplished is a result of group work, and to indicate that one accomplished something alone is a mistake. Much of what gets done is a result of going through administrative channels in the country. It often is difficult to sidestep a lot of this red tape, and efforts to do so can be regarded as disrespect for legal and governmental institutions.

39 Cultural Differences in Selected Countries and Regions: Arab Countries
Connections are extremely important in conducting business. Patience is critical to the success of business transactions. This time consideration should be built into all negotiations. Important decisions usually are made in person, not by correspondence or telephone. This is why an MNC’s personal presence often is a prerequisite for success in the Arab world. Additionally, while there may be many people who provide input on the final decision, the ultimate power rests with the person at the top, and this individual will rely heavily on personal impressions, trust, and rapport.

40 Review and Discuss Define the four basic predispositions MNCs have toward their international operations. In what way are parochialism and simplification barriers to effective cross-cultural management? In each case, give an example. Many MNCs would like to do business overseas in the same way that they do business domestically. Do research findings show that any approaches that work well in the U.S. also work well in other cultures?

41 Organizational Cultures and Diversity
chapter six Organizational Cultures and Diversity McGraw-Hill/Irwin Copyright © 2009 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

42 Chapter Objectives DEFINE what is meant by organizational culture; discuss interaction of national and MNC culture IDENTIFY four most common categories of organizational culture and discuss characteristics of each PROVIDE overview of nature and degree of multi-culturalism and diversity in today’s MNCs. DISCUSS common guidelines and principles used in building team and organizational multicultural effectiveness.

43 The Nature of Organizational Culture
Organizational culture: shared values and beliefs enabling members to understand their roles and the norms of the organization, including: Observed behavioral regularities, typified by common language, terminology, rituals Norms, reflected by things such as amount of work to do and degree of cooperation between management and employees Dominant values organization advocates and expected participants to share (e.g., low absenteeism, high efficiency)

44 Organizational Culture (continued)
Other values and beliefs: Philosophy set forth regarding how to treat employees and customers Rules dictating do’s and don’ts of employee behavior pertaining to productivity intergroup cooperation… Organizational climate as reflected by way participants interact with each other, treat customers, and feel about how treated by senior level management

45 Interaction between National and Organizational Culture
National cultural values of employees may significantly impact their organizational performance Cultural values employees bring to workplace are not easily changed by organization

46 Dimensions of Organizational Culture

47 European Perceptions of Cultural Dimensions of U. S
European Perceptions of Cultural Dimensions of U.S. Operations (same MNC)

48 European Management Characteristics

49 Organizational Cultures in MNCs
Shaped by numerous factors including cultural preferences of leaders and employees Some MNCs have subsidiaries that (aside from logo and reporting procedures) wouldn’t be easily recognizable as belonging to same MNC

50 Organizational Culture in MNCs
Four steps in integration of organizational cultures resulting from international expansion via mergers/acquisitions: Two groups establish purpose, goals, and focus of merger Develop mechanisms to identify most important structures and manager roles Determine who has authority over resources Identify expectations of all involved participates and facilitate communication between departments and individuals

51 Four Cultural Types

52 Four Cultural Types Family Culture: Strong emphasis on hierarchy and orientation to persons Power oriented, headed by leader regarded as caring parent Management takes care of employees, ensures they’re treated well, and have continued employment Catalyze and multiply energies of personnel or end up supporting leader who is ineffective and drains energy and loyalties

53 Four Cultural Types 2. Eiffel Tower:
Strong emphasis on hierarchy and orientation to task Jobs well defined; coordination from top Culture narrow at top; broad at base Relationships specific and status remains with job Few off-the-job relationships between manager and employee Formal hierarchy is impersonal and efficient

54 Four Cultural Types 3. Guided Missile:
Strong emphasis on equality in workplace and in task Culture oriented to work Work undertaken by teams or project groups All team members equal Treat each other with respect Egalitarian and task-driven organizational culture

55 Four Cultural Types Incubator Culture:
Strong emphasis on equality and personal orientation Organization as incubator for self- expression and self-fulfillment Little formal structure Participants confirm, criticize, develop, find resources for, or help complete development of innovative product or service

56 National Patterns of Corporate Culture

57 Managing Multiculturalism and Diversity
Both domestically and internationally, organizations lead workforces with a variety of cultures consisting of largely diverse populations: Women and Men Young and Old Black, White, Latin, Asian, Arab, Indian Many others.

58 Phases of Multicultural Development

59 Locations of Cross-Cultural Interaction

60 Types of Multiculturalism
Domestic Multiculturalism Multicultural and diverse workforce operating in MNC home country Group Multiculturalism Homogenous groups Token groups Bicultural groups Multicultural groups

61 Potential Problems Associated with Diversity
Perceptual problems When cultural diverse groups come together, often bring preconceived, erroneous stereotypes with them Inaccurate biases Inaccurate communication Attitudinal problems May cause lack of cohesion resulting in unit’s inability to take concerted action or be productive

62 Advantages of Diversity
Enhance creativity Lead to better decisions More effective/productive results Prevent groupthink Can facilitate highly effective teams under right conditions

63 Managing Multicultural Teams
Select team members for task-related abilities, not solely based on ethnicity Team members must recognize and prepare to deal with their differences Team leader must help identify/define overall goal Mutual respect among members is critical Managers must give team positive feedback on process and output

64 Review and Discuss In which of the four types of organizational cultures – family, Eiffel Tower, guided missile, incubator – would most people in U.S. feel comfortable? Most MNCs need not enter foreign markets to face challenges of dealing with multiculturalism. Do you agree or disagree? What are some problems to be overcome when using multiculturally diverse teams? What are some basic guidelines for helping make diverse teams more effective?

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