Today there is a high level of interaction between Hong Kong and USA together with Taiwan in the social economic circles and this has been of great significance in many ways. China has been moving at a very high speed to elevate its position in the world economic affairs.
It is against this background, that cooperate managers need to understand the relationship between different cultural norms as they set organizational policies (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
This paper therefore analyses the concept of crossvergence as applied in the research which was conducted in the banking industry of the above mentioned regions. Based on this research, this paper also tries to prove that culture is dynamic especially in the ever changing business environment.
Crossvergence is one of the theories that can be utilized in a bid to explain the ever changing cultural disposition with reference to increasing social-economic interaction. In this case, it can be noted that in the last twenty five years, significant development has taken place in the above mentioned regions.
For instance, Hong Kong which has been of strategic importance to Britain for the last ninety years is now an important administrative base for the people of China (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84). It is now ascribing to some western values and practices due to cultural influence (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
The word culture can be defined as set of values and principles practiced by a group of individuals in a given social set up (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84). Organizational culture for instance refers to the norms of an organization (Mead & Andrews 2009, p. 121). Culture as a concept is imperative to consider when one tries to manage changes in an organization.
Managers have come to realize that apart from the laid down strategies, structures and guidelines in their organizations, changes in corporate culture are also important in achieving organizational change (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84). Cultural dispositions as revealed by a recent research in the banking industry of China and USA, is more dynamic than static in management activities (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
Convergence is always seen as a cultural development which caused by the spread of cross cultural values and contact (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84). It has also been argued by some people that technological developments in communication have increased the rate of potential convergence (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84). Education and economic influences can impact on some cultural dimensions of a country (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
On the other hand, divergence is seen as the deviation from similarities in cultural values (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84). For instance, the remarkable contact between Western countries and Hong Kong in the last century encouraged convergence between the two blocks. However, it could have also created divergence between China and Taiwan (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
Growing organizations also tend to follow the footsteps of prominent organizations by embracing their skills and strategies (Mead & Andrews 2009, p. 121). At this level we realize that some changes in cultural practices are important in bringing changes in performance and maintaining high level of competitiveness.
Economic activities can encourage people from different cultural backgrounds to move to other countries in order to establish foreign business investments. This has been witnessed in the banking industries of both Western and Eastern countries, which have extended their presence in other countries (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
Many scholars have also noted that disaggregative approaches are good in conducting cultural research (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84). Studies conducted in China have indicated that managers from different parts of China have different corporate values. However, some researchers identified that in Southern China, some managers demonstrated similar values and practices.
This could be attributed to the common language and cultural values and norms that they share. Different management attitudes in the main land and other parts of China could be related to differences in sub cultural practices (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84). Other areas with potential differences can be found both in China and USA.
If culture is treated statically, it could possibly bring about potentially misguiding cultural values for the people working in the ever changing business and management environment, in which international competition and marketing forces have a great impact on the performance of corporate institutions (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
The manifestation of culture in some institutions for instance the banking industry, has currently been witnessed in various parts of China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. One can also analyze the management and structural changes in various industries over a given period of time and this can also act as a representative of great cultural changes (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
It is important to note that the research that was conducted in the banking sectors of China, USA, Taiwan and Hong Kong revealed several cultural variables that are worth employing in management. First, cultural parameters are not likely to be static in business contexts as witnessed in the banking sector simply because organizations are always pressurized by competition and need to offer quality services and products (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
Therefore it is not meaningful to treat culture as static but as dynamic. Secondly, the study revealed that diversity in culture had a regional significance in some countries and therefore the application of disaggregative approach as compared to other approaches can offer a better chance in conducting research related to management (Kelley, MacNab & Worthley 2006, vol. 12, pp. 67-84).
Last but more importantly, crossvergence approach can be employed when conducting managerial research in Greater China and other countries that have potentially diverse cultural practices. Since culture is dynamic, it is therefore advisable for corporate managers to device policies that conform to the current socio-economic trends in order to compete favorably with their competitors.
Kelley, L, MacNab, B & Worthley, R 2006, ‘Crossvergence and cultural tendencies: a longitudinal test of the Hong Kong, Taiwan and United States Banking sectors’, Journal of International Management, vol. 12, no. 1, pp. 67-84.
Mead, R & Andrews, G 2009, International management, Wiley Blackwell, New York.