Cross-cultural management is concerned with the interaction of different cultures in a business environment because business is enhanced when people from different cultures creates a solution to a problem by examining the problem at hand from the perspective of each other’s culture (Brake, 2010). As a result, dimensions of culture explain the cultural differences that exist in organizations (Hampden, 2009).
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Universalistic versus particularistic is concerned with whether a culture assigns importance to law (Mead, 2010).Moreover, universalistic attach significance to the rules while particularistic value a particular circumstances more than rules (Mead, 2010). In cross-cultural management, both approaches apply because a particularistic treats everyone as unique while a universalistic supports everyone (Mead, 2010). In Japan, cross-cultural management is through universalistic because everyone receives fair treatment according to the laid down rules and regulations (Hampden, 2009).
Individualism versus collectivism is concerned with whether people regard themselves as individuals or part of a group (Brake, 2010). Besides, in individualistic culture, an individual comes before the community and vice versa is true for communitarian culture (Hampden, 2009). Communitarian is prevalent in Japan and is the reason behind Japan success in cross-cultural management because it orients people to a common objective (Mead, 2010).
Neutral versus emotional is concerned with the degree to which people display their emotions (Brake, 2010). Additionally, in a neutral culture, people do not display feelings while in an emotional culture they do (Kinsey & Hofstede, 2009). The culture in Japan is neutral and it interferes with cross-cultural management because people cannot express their feelings hence it becomes hard to find a solution that suit the majority (Hampden, 2009).
Specific versus diffuse has a focus on the degree of people involvement in relationships (Kinsey & Hofstede, 2009). Furthermore, in specific oriented culture, work and family is widely recognized while in diffuse oriented culture a close link exist (Hampden, 2009). Japan has a diffuse oriented culture and this hinders cross-cultural management because the closeness of people in the public inhibits decision-making process (Kinsey & Hofstede, 2009).
Achievement versus ascription focuses on how people acquire their status (Mead, 2010). Moreover, achieved status is what you do while ascribed status is who you are (Mead, 2010). Both achieved and ascribed statuses add value to cross cultural management because everyone contributes positively to management regardless of how he got his status (Hampden, 2009). Japan is low in ascription and high in achievement (Hampden, 2009).
Sequential versus synchronic is concerned with the management of time by people from different cultures (Hampden, 2009). Furthermore, sequential people value time and plan for it while synchronic people do the opposite (Mead, 2010). Sequential people are common in Japan and they lag cross-cultural management because they always lack time for discussion (Brake, 2010).
Internal versus external control is concerned with the meaning that people attach to their environment (Mead, 2010). Additionally, people with internal control believe that man can control nature while people with external control believe that nature controls man (Hampden, 2009). Japanese believe in internal control and this facilitates cross-cultural management because they can control all the factors influencing business (Mead, 2010).
An understanding of the dimensions helps Japanese in management because they will know which cultures to adopt and which to drop. For instance, dropping of neutral culture is imperative because it is a barrier to cross cultural management while adoption of emotional culture improves management by allowing people to express themselves (Mead, 2010).
The dimensions of culture facilitate an understanding of the interaction between different cultures thus enhancing cultural management. This is because, effective interaction with people of different culture requires a study of differences in behavior expectations (Kinsey & Hofstede, 2009). As a result, managers should be enlightened on the importance of understanding the dimensions of culture.
Brake, L. (2010). Doing Bussiness Internationally:Appreciating Cultural Diversity. Journal of International Bussiness and Economics , 2 (7), 23-26. Web.
Hampden, R. (2009). Riding the Waves of Culture:Understanding Cultural Diversity in Global Bussiness. Journal of Management Development , 109 (4), 113-119. Web.
Kinsey, N., & Hofstede, G. (2009). Managing Cultural Differences in International Projects. Journal of International Bussiness , 23 (10), 234-237. Web.
Mead, A. (2010). Management World wide: The Impact of Societal Culture on Organisations around the Globe. Journal of Communication accross Cultures , 8 (5), 27-31. Web.