Study Skills for Higher Education
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Critically evaluate the suggestions made in the article on Hofstede’s cultural dimensions.
Justifying the position by agreeing and disagreeing with the cultural dimensions.
Make other suggestions for cultural dimensions in a business environment
The article topic for this assignment is on culture and its dimensions. This assignment first critically evaluates the suggestions made in the article on the cultural dimensions of Hofstede’s. Second, this assignment justifies the position by agreeing and disagreeing with the cultural dimensions of Hofstede. Third, this assignment makes other suggestions for cultural dimensions.
Critically evaluate the suggestions made in the article on Hofstede’s cultural dimensions
Hofstede’s identified mainly four key cultural dimensions that have a great impact on the environment of business (Ferraro, 2016). These four cultural dimensions are individualism/collectivism, power distance, uncertainty avoidance, and masculinity/femininity.
Figure: Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions Source: Ferraro (2016)
In terms of individualism, this culture emphasizes the individual’s needs over the group’s needs. In this individualistic culture, people are found as autonomous as well as independent. The key advantage of this culture is individuals of the individualistic society share different characteristics and they have the freedom to be different (Fabrizio, 2017). In addition, individualistic culture promotes the capability to perform properly and discover the strength to overcome different obstacles. However, the key drawback of this culture is individuals of this culture do not care for others and this can create difficulties in social life. In terms of a collectivist culture, this type of culture emphasizes a group’s needs as a whole over an individual’s needs. According to Dellner (2016) notes, people of the collectivist culture tend to work in a team to make harmony, as well as group unity, which is valued effectively.
The key benefit of this culture is group members always concerned for group unity and consider each other as their part. However, the disadvantage of this culture is few members become idle if there are many members in a group. In terms of power distance, it is a term that refers to how individuals belong to an individual culture and view power relations such as superior and subordinate relations (The Articulate CEO, 2016). Individuals with high power distance are deferential to authority and usually accept the unsatisfactory power distribution. In addition, individuals with low power distance question authority and expect to contribute to decisions (Muscato, 2018). The key benefit of power distance culture is it accepts and expects the dissimilarities between the powerful and powerless people of an organization. The main drawback of this power distance is cross-cultural issues are created. In terms of uncertainty avoidance, uncertainty avoidance mainly deals with the tolerance of society for uncertainty (Clearly Culture, 2018). In addition, it describes a search of an individual for the truth.
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Moreover, it specifies to what point a culture suites its individual to feel uncomfortable and comfortable in an unstructured condition. The high uncertainty avoidance is uncomfortable with the uncertainty and the low uncertainty avoidance accepts the uncertainty easily. In terms of masculinity, a masculine culture is created by the roles of males and mainly focuses on different values including competition, success, and money. This culture also includes power, dominance, wealth, and assertiveness. In terms of femininity, it mainly stands for the preference for collaboration, humility, caring for the weak and life quality (Arrindell, 2018). Thus, different cultural dimensions have different types of impact on the business environment. Owners or the managers of business organizations should use the appropriate cultural dimension in their business environment.
Justifying the position by agreeing and disagreeing with the cultural dimensions
Different cultural dimensions have different impacts on the business environment. Geert Hofstede is a Dutch psychologist and he is much known because of his comparative studies of cultures. In the article of this assignment, Hofstede identified four cultural dimensions that have a great impact on the business environment and these cultural dimensions include Individualism/Collectivism, Power Distance, Uncertainty Avoidance, and Masculinity/Femininity (Ferraro, 2016). Hofstede (2015) said that the power distance dimension of culture mainly relates to an individual’s equality or inequality in the culture (for example, equality or inequality of employees in the business environment).
However, uncertainty avoidance represents ambiguity, for example, organizations face different uncertainties in their business environment such as technological possibilities, customers’ wants distribution channels, etc (Piepenburg, 2016). On the other hand, the individualism dimension of culture shows the degree that individuals are responsible for several actions as well as outcomes. In addition, the collectivist dimension of culture represents the group that is responsible for different outcomes. According to Pedersen (2017) notes, both masculinity and femininity present the nation’s behavior. An understanding of different cultural dimensions gives an understanding of different cultural aspects as well as the nation’s tendencies. Thus, different cultural dimensions have different benefits and drawbacks in different business environments. It is essential to use the proper dimension of culture in different business situations to achieve the business’s goals and objectives.
Make other suggestions for cultural dimensions in a business environment
Business organizations become global day by day and they have to adjust in several environments. Most business organizations concentrate on diverse workplaces and employ employees from diverse cultures to deal with customers in different countries (Cateora, Gilly and graham, 2011). The cultures of the employees are working in the global business organizations may be different from the employees who are working in the national business organizations. In the article, Hofstede’s four cultural dimensions are identified.
Besides these dimensions, business organizations should focus on long term orientation/short term orientation and indulgence/restraint cultural dimensions. The long-term cultural dimension focuses on the business organizations’ future planning and perseverance value where the short term focuses on business organizations’ past and present plans. On the other hand, indulgence is permitting the satisfaction of the key drives that are related to enjoying life where restraint is regulating the key drives to the strict social norms (Mclachlan, 2013). Thus, these two types of cultural dimensions are the suggestions for business organizations to be focused on and used in their environment.
In conclusion, culture is a significant issue for any kind of business environment. Business organizations nowadays stay connected with the global environment. Thus, they should focus on the proper cultural dimensions that can bring a positive impact on them. Moreover, business organizations should use the proper dimensions of culture because different dimension has different benefits in a different business environment.