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What is Culture?

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Cultural Studies
Wordcount: 5437 words Published: 11th Dec 2017

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What is culture? Culture is the movement of share perception, also can be diverse and varied. However, different characteristic of culture have been subject of extensive research that commonly held view the culture environment influences and the shape of value of society. Myers (2002) argues about the culture analysis requires to look for all three dimensions s behaviour, language and artefacts that affect the daily organizational.

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Next, what is Organization as there are key ways in every organization share but at the same time all organization have differ features. From the 1800s there are many successful story have build up in the organization that involve in the culture as the founder in culture theory have Peter and Waterman, Ouchi, Schein Hofstede focus on the belief and value in the organization example seven ‘S’ , Theory Z, Corporate culture and others.

The textbook link variety of founder in culture and organization, show the important of culture changing in nowadays. Like the author use the culture web founded in corporate strategy to analysis these features that any significant difference in one of these areas will change the overall culture (Johnson & Scholes, 1999). Schein (1985) argued that in term of culture should be reserved by the member of an organization, that involve in operate unconsciously and define the organization view of itself in the environment. Culture that affect the organization not just by behaviour, language and artefacts in organization culture it also involve in the office layout mean the workplace design that affect in the employee daily working process.

Furthermore, defining culture “that complex whole includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, laws, customs, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society (Tyler 1871). There are many defining of culture that involve in many ways, culture some time can be use in the daily basic like religion or country culture for example in Malaysia we have differ culture in Chinese foods without beef or Muslim people that the culture anti pork. Furthermore, culture can be use in organisation and it is very important too organisation and also global national business that involve in such production line like coca-cola, McDonald, Levi’s and retail such as shopping malls and Disney this are the imperialistic natural of American culture (Barber and Jihad, 1995).

Moreover, there are always have problem in organization as the company culture in other ways there must be involve in culture for the environmental changer. For example like McDonald show the differ ways of business culture of the staff in Malaysian, Malay (Muslim) staff have the benefit to pray during the work time as the culture in Malaysia and McDonald also give or build a room of the Muslim staff to pray. Hence, cultures have so many things to do with the social world whether how it works, still going to involve in organization somehow. Hence, in the business point of view ‘culture’ is one of the important roles for organisation by just having a simple communication also involve in culture.

International business endeavours require people to communicate across culture and national boundaries. Global businesses like strong branding have understand the culture very well to make sure they run over the business by time to time changer. Hence, organization cultures involve in few parts as looking into a big picture how these cultures affect the organization and the environmental education changing.

Moreover, the linked of culture and organization that involve the global organization; looking into the bigger picture of the culture in ethical business cultures with the characteristics with a similar link to the cross-cultural that assessment of the ethical of the various business behaviour; the culture dimension of international business and the culture that affect use of information.

Lastly , we knows the important of the environmental education changing that must be change with the future generations to understand the necessary tools to solve the environmental problem. Furthermore, for the business point of view especial involve in the global world business culture must be change time to time to produce or achieve to the new future generations.   

Reason For The Choice Of Topic

The reason I choose this topic “culture and organization” it because this topic involve in variety part of the industries as a student in Business with International Management at Northumbria University, UK. I research in all kind of ways and found out most of the organization involve in the culture problem. According to my study Human Resource Management and global marketing communication both of that study also point out the important of culture that involve in business. Furthermore, talking about business culture is one of the step that business student must involve an example using the case study and global brand include in my topic that can understand more clear of view that the important business culture have to do with organization. When come to my career in the management position as marketing manager or HR manager, whether I work in the local or global company it must also understand the behaviour of people involve in the culture especial due in different place and ways that people working in the organization.  

Outline Of Section

The relationship between culture and organization has often been discussed in the news that organization facing problem with cultural. Taking example like BP case study (Baker, 2005) that involve 15 worker killed by huge explosion, one of this happen is the worker of BP have miscommunication with another by ending up with a huge accidents and (Frey. S, 2007) the author also agrees that cultural miscommunication is costly.

The chapter for journal review show the author using secondary data access information from different books, articles and internet in order to achieve the following objectives:

  • Define the Culture and organization that the authors ( Winch.G, Millar.C and Clifton.N, 1997) implements a culture values taken from Hofstede together with a behavioural instrument from Van De Ven to matched with British and French managers project.
  • Define the concept of cultural dimension in international business the author (Frey, 1997) focus on the cultural diversity and culture awareness; he explored the ways in the culture influence work habits and values communication styles and business practices.
  • Define the concept of characteristics of ethical business cultures (A. Ardichvili, Mitchell.A and Jondle.D, 2008) used five methods that attributed to ethical business culture by executives from the industries. Another authors use cultural crossvergence and social desirability bias (Dunn and Shome, 2009) by using Chinese and Canadian business students to evaluate ethical. 
  • Define the concept how culture can affect the use of information technology. Sharon, Smith and Caralyn (2003) think that using the information technology that affected by various culture in MNEs (Multinational enterprises).
  • The central issues that involve in the culture and organization, the impact of strategic change in the culture from this study that using the change kaleidoscope framework to analyse the context and appropriate contextualised implementation approach. This study will add in few case studies to make a clear picture that involve in the global organization.

The final chapter is to draws conclusions from the analysis; to compare the finding of the secondary research with the result, briefly put some example. The objective of this paper will be answering the problem statement.

Literature ReviewIntroduction

Literature review means reviewing articles/paper or research, reviewing the skill that will be increasingly critical on the careers develop. Being a good reviewer can help in career that young psychologist become known as an excellent reviewer. (Henry L.Roediger, 2007) A review of the current literature surrounding he question or issue that should provide a clear understanding and also should be up-to-date and relevant the topic that we choose.

Culture And Organization

In the cultural and organization review of the literature by Hofstede (1980) regarding the culture value instrument, the author focuses on the value that determinant of behaviour in the study of differences among national culture. Hofstede uses data from IBM. His study consisted of populations of employees in national in 66 countries. By using the one multinational firm, Hofstede uses the number of industry and company variables in the cultural differences. He discovered the difference in value across culture and all the IBM employees’ agreed that they shared the same corporate value. In a later study, Hofstede and Bond (1988) found the fifth construct, which involves the long versus short-term orientation.

Another author like G. Winch, C. Millar and N. Clifton (1997) also agreed with Hofstede culture value, the author using the British and French organization have the some interest and the aim of in common for all those much-trumpeted culture and traditional differences. As the result for the attention European Union being paid the role of national culture in the business success and differences in the organizational behaviour between nations. When we look into the cultural dimension that the ways that France company have a high context (in the person) respect the people in the roles and look into the people who hold the roles. From Trompenaars view of French management are particulars on French people reefers on the rules but to the person in power. (Paul Hill, 2010)

Furthermore, British are based on low context just opposite with the high context which more on formal rules and more reciprocal, personal trusts (Hall.E). The authors TML (Transmanche-Link) and British construction corporations on building largest constructed facilities that cost of 4.8 billion on behalf of tunnel concessionaire, Euro-tunnel. (G. Winch, C. Millar and N. Clifton, 1997)

The result shows research by exploring both national business culture and the implications for the organization design and behaviour in the context of the both organization. The authors use the cross-national comparisons of culture value and organization reviewing the literature by Millar (1989), Smith (1992) and the work of Hofstede focus on the contribution to understand national business cultural. Hofstede have developed four indices in the business context as power distance (PDI), uncertainty avoidance (UAI), individualism (IDV) and masculinity (MAS).

Hofstde argues that matrix of power distance (PDI) against uncertainty avoidance (UAI) produces four type of organization the implicitly structured modelled as market (Dutch/Anglo); the workflow bureaucracy model as ‘well-oiled machine’ Germanic and the full bureaucracy model as ‘pyramid’. The authors argue on the ‘organic’ and ‘bureaucratic’ models of the organization upon culture not taking the conventional terminology of the organization design.

Analysis the correlates aspects of national economic life which able to produce cluster of national business culture that show common features and Hofstede also relies on review of secondary literature for his exploration of behavioural aspects. He consider two formal hypotheses that were tested in the research, as the British respondents in low UAI and PDI which result more organic organization structure. For the French that display in high PDI and UAI will be more bureaucratic structure (Hofstede, 1980, p.319). Hence, the second hypotheses that British respondents in low UAI and high MAS the result where an organization been motivation by personal, individual success. French display on high UAI and low MAS result where organization motivation by the sense of security and belonging (Hofstede, 1980, p.376). 

Taking Pixar (M. Haley and H. Sidky, 2009) for example a US organization that have a strong national culture in the low context which involve more on employee relationship as they work together as a team by having organization culture to share the identity, purpose and shares the vision among the organization member with flexibility and creativity in the organization goals and objects. Which similar to Hofstede test research in British in low UAI and high MAS the result an organization where motivation by personal, individual success.

The authors find the problem is the scores for the individual countries do not possess the frequency distributions, they (G. Winch, C. Millar and N. Clifton, 1997) think the uncertainty avoidance is problematic and the variable behavioural that concerning feeling at work, rather that value.

Organization assessment developed by Van de Ven (1998) measures of various aspects of organization and job design from individual motivation by working process to overall organization structure. The behaviour derived from Van de Ven analysis a set of data in three grouping as group behaviour at the unit level; work organization and individual feeling. This analyses run by age and sex in two group that result no significant difference in term of education accomplishment.

Conclusions testing the relationship between the culture values and organization for Hofstede works by effects behavioural were not found. The author’s observations on this paper that Hofstede indices can be change over time and place between the different groups of people and validity of the behavioural patterns.

Cultural Dimension Of International Business

The global economy recognition among the culture differences that affects on the internal business. Frey (1997) thinks that international businesses are making the business more productive in the culturally diverse environments. Hence, differences management style and organizational behaviour can be influences by culture. One of the point that the author points out is the culture miscommunication can be very costly. Such communication can be intimate between employees or might be place in public area. The author use cultural diversity aspects in the international business.

What is diversity, diversity refers to identities and experiences in the society life but in the business case diversity mean greater range in the individual strengths, experience and perspectives. From Anderson and Metcalf (2003) argue that better communication with diversity groups of potential and existing customer. Some even argue that it will create more harm than good with the communications and work can be lead to a higher staff turnover. (Meurling. E, 2004)

In the case taking about Pixar have not miscommunication problem involve as view that good ideas are rarer and more valuable than good people is rooted in the misconception of creativity.( Ed Catmull, 2008) Pixar work together as a team to produce new ideas of film that target not just kids but elder people too one for the successful film in Finding Nemo by getting to it Pixar must understand the ways of culture differs in the organization to create an international films that target the world. Furthermore, one of the textbooks that culture mistakes made in business example the Coca-cola that recognized as the global brand also make mistake in 1920 when the Chinese characters that translated as “bite the wax tadpole” (Terpstra,1991).

The author thinks the marketing and management concept of culture diversity in the work place can be traced to the globalization. She thinks that all researcher lead to Hofstede modal that involve in the culture difference between diverse groups. As the basic concept of managing diversity accepts the workforce consists of population of people but Kandola and Fullerton (1994) argues diverse backgrounds is from the systematic and planned commitment to recruit the employees.

There are two issues that involve in the stereotyping for business managers as gender roles. As the masculine role that show men are more important positions globally than women. (XiaoJian Wu, 2008)  According to the report show the average male work in the full-time earned $54,803 per year, about 32 percent than average female counterpart in $37,123. (Encarta.msn.com, 2004) Another example that on Sweden they focus on integrate ethnic minorities in the workforce and why less women in the higher managerial positions (Johnsoon. A, 2002).

The second issues is the conflict resolution that lead to conflict the business world, conflict because different kind of roles example if put a groups with differs roles of people they will be conflict in the group that can’t communicate with each other in the group. Lead to Trompenaars view of management to the Anglo-Saxon culture. He stresses on the teamwork focused collective culture with creativity based on the individualistic societies to skills of diverse workforce (Trompenaars, 1994).

Taking one of the case study company OTICON, their company culture is very useful by using the style design in the company to develop the creativity and employee commitment. Each of differ task they will put into different group by involve in different roles and duty of the employee to achieve the mission example that each department have different job to do like HR department and marketing department but from OTICON they look into differ view putting each department mix together became a group that come out new ideas after they achieve or finis the mission, they will place back in the roles. (Guy Brown, 2004)This ways is similar to Pixar that can avoid miscommunication with the group or team to achieve the mission of the goals.

Frey also talk about the literature of the Americans to be monolingual to conversant in two languages that perceives by non-English speaking people as an air of superiority. The author points out American doing business with the diversity culture have not motivated to learn a second language because English was been considers the language of business. Now this day global packaging also mainly used English to pack it, when come to the communication with the global business in India and British they both use English to speak. 

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The author also point out the important of cultural awareness, the diverse environments in the culture themes is business response to the demand for information that will conducting a business. A good example had been show as British organization Mark and Spencer know the important of the cultural awareness and keep on changing by year to year. From Jane Simms (2007) that M&S used to be strong by became fossilised preventing the adapting to the markets as “good culture are flexible” and she also compare with Google whether will be heading the similar pitfall.

Ethical Business Cultures

The authors (A. Ardichvili, Mitchell. A and Jondle.D, 2008) link Meyer (2004) on the business, organization culture and organizational ethical or unethical behaviour in the organizations function of the two contextual factor and individual characteristics. What is contextual factor, according to the authors (Cohen, 1993; Meyers, 2004; Trevino, 1986), It is one of the most important influence in the organization cultural. The authors link the attributes of organizational culture to ethical behaviour (Frederick, 1995; Trevino and Nelson, 2004).

For ethical business culture on the organization the comprised of the individual work with internal and external stakeholders. Trevino (1990) study identify components of ethical business from holistic perceptive, an organizational environment is fosters on ethical business culture by shared value and belief. Furthermore, in the individual organizational employees are not expected to right from wrong, but also more important is to go beyond the minimum explore and the implement ethical decision are right.

The authors argue about the Cohen (1993) organizational cultures are combinations of formal and informal system, processes and interactions. From all the authors (Cohen, 1993; Frederick, 1995; Schein, 2004; Trevino 1990; Trevino and Nelson, 2004) also agree with the formal organizational culture that comprised of leadership, structure, policies socialization mechanisms and decision processes among other thing. With the informal culture include implicit behaviour norms, role model, ritual, historical, anecdotes and language. Trevino study the leadership is the important elements of an organization ethical culture that Brown (2006) think leaders is able to create that support an ethical in the organization are those who represent, communicate and the roles high ethical standard.

The authors (A. Ardichvili, Mitchell. A and Jondle.D, 2008) research and study created the best characteristics of ethical organizational cultures by the five clusters of characteristic (please view at the appendices C in Figures3.3.1) that infer the comprehensive model to influence operational in the creating and sustaining an “organizational culture that ethical conduct and commitment to compliance with the law” (United States Sentencing Commission, 2004). The authors think that those characteristics will exceed in the minimal baseline those requirements of law in the business culture.

Based on the study results that the model of the characteristic Mission & Value Driven. The mission and value must be integral component of an organization strategic focus involve in the organization to survive and thrive. They must be high performance culture and flow freely and systemically to the organization to become operational norms that desired behaviour. The stakeholder balance and long term concerns were by the best interests of customer and taking the long view in the managing shareholder value. The linkage with the leadership effectiveness by the organization focused on the survivability and longevity.

Furthermore, Freeman (1994) theory, the business and business managers have fiduciary responsibility to stakeholders groups in those of vested interest in the success of the organization. But Milton Friedman (1970) is stockholder centric, where one and only one responsibility of business that can increase the profits.

The best example to use in the home deport as the mission & vision driven that Home Depot (Charan.R, 2006) trying to build the relationship of trust and respect to the worker and customers. From the stakeholder balance to products the good balance of customer value and profits, leadership effectiveness involve with Dennis Donovan that head of human resources in home deport by managing demand ethical conduct at every level of the company using the changing in culture to provide best result for the company.

Process integrity is which involve in the performance appraisals and promotions by understanding the mission of the company process and behaviour. Hence, for the long-term perspective is the place where mission above the profits with the long-term over the short-term. In this case, to create framework for new culture by focus on the process, hard data and accountability different from five year ago and customer will also be interests over long term relationship with home deport.

The authors provide recommendations for variety business that can develop an instrument used in large-scale quantitative study. To validate the characteristics of ethical business culture to confirm the validity of five identified clusters that involve the business executives and managers from a cross-section of industries. But from Paul Dunn and Anamitra Shome (2009) study in cross-cultural differences between Chinese and Canadian students with respect the ethically various of business behaviour. As the social desirability bias is also one of the found to become a cross-culture phenomenon with different culture.

The authors think the respondents to increase their assessment of the un-ethicality of business activities. Furthermore, the authors link on the convergence/divergence of managerial and organization value found in many study like Detert, 2000; Hofstede, 1980; and many more that significance in the wake market and the unprecedented advances in technology. For the organization point of view, value system must function seamlessly to diverse the economic and culture environment. 

Moreover, the impact on the behaviour that involve in the culture might be antithetical as the business activity global to identify the principle and behaviour that acceptable on the culture. Hence, the divergence viewpoint that holds the universal principle in the culture differences. Form Hofstede (1980) show that the national culture affect the managerial behaviour by managers the organization value in the conformity with basic assumptions and belief to develop a particular cultural context. Furthermore, convergence theory Myloni (2004) study that the pressures of globalization managers the irrespective of the culture background, induced to adopt increasing the value system to meet the global business challenges.

The authors study two things that reference to business students who possess that relatively high level of maturity and training. Their survey shows the Chinese and Canadian on their attitudes and questionable business practices. The objective of study is to understand of debate on divergence vs. Convergence to know more about social desirability bias phenomenon.

The Culture Affects The Use Of Information Technology

John, Smith and Caralyn (2003), they think that culture bigger impact is the use of information technology. Taking example like the multinational enterprises (MNEs) must be involve in communicate and process data efficiently and effectively through the firm. Advances on the electronic financial reporting, e-business and information security most of them link to the accountants. Hence, accountant’s point of view to confront and resolve these challenges, they must consider the effect of the culture on the use of the technology.

Furthermore, the authors realize the impact of the MNEs have the link to global world of communicate with the informational. There are much been write from the founders (Featherstone 1990; Maddox 1993; Breecher and Costello 1994; and many more) about the globalization of marketplace and the information technology in uniting the cultures of the world. The authors study several links in it, taking e-commerce for example that substantially in 1995 after the inception of World Wide Web internet as business firm must be able to compete on the web and the physical location with the international counterparts. Hence, some authors like Lainhart (2002); Tie (2000); Smith and Salter (1992); Smith and Smith (2002) study found that technology plays the pivotal roles in the competitive advantage. Nowadays technology can affect the environment, capital availability, industry and culture.

Harris and Moran (1991) think that computer, supersonic travel and electronic media are break into the traditional barriers of people to respective cultures and unique world of culture is emerging. However, the closer inspection reveals a different story, for example the authors Voich and Stepina (1994)  study about the Eastern versus Western cultures to determine the behaviour to examine the diversity of many culture that shape the modern world and in the future.

Tie up with Hofstede (1990) study that the first demonstrate idea with global communication and increased interdependence of world market, distinctive culture between nations. Ferraro (1990) argue that any significant cultural homogenization of the world population. The issues of convergence versus divergence of cultural differences research on the organization. From Eining and Owen (1994) study that cultural and socio-economic difference in other country that can affect the ways of technologies accepted by people in a society.

Therefore, in the culture point of view in Schein (1985) argued that culture and belief that are shared by member of an organization that operate unconsciously. The authors also use Hofstede (1980) study on the value of behaviour in the extensive study of difference among the national culture.

The authors use a reach model  that affect the environment of the society value, as the value are brought to organization thought the employees that shape the organizational environment. The patterns of utilization of information technology for the organization are influence by the organization environment. The authors link with Hofstede (1980) model and Gray (1988) study the culture affects the business enterprises and on the accounting respectively. The authors created the reach model that can influence the cultural environment on the utilization of information technology with an organization.

 For to begin with the cultural environment that includes like culture history, geography and economy. This forms society’s basic value as the value that can influence the organization within these cultures. Furthermore, on the organization environment determine the technology usage. Through this model, culture would be expected to an impact on use of technology.

Using the Home Deport case study to apply in the research model to make a clear picture of the figure 2,  whether it is suitable to use in the business enterprises and also on the accounting  respectively. Home Deport involve in the culture change by taking one of the example that Home Deport facing as before Home Deport have no data templates.

Data templates mean form to organize performance data for quarterly business review meeting which encourage personal accountability that give the employee deeper understanding of business performance and foster collaboration by putting people on the same page when making decision this type data have not been use in the old culture. Furthermore, Home Deport today is focus on process, hard data and accountability.

The study indicate that despite the fact that people are moving to the global marketplace, whether it is internal or external cultural and technological difference between the countries as different countries to technology at different rates. This difference adoption in the information technology may affect that aspect of business including accounting. Nowadays, financial information allows the multinational enterprise to be more effective on the financial information. The authors explore the changes regarding impediments to the internal data flow. The new technology and technology skills that required for employment can be influence by the culture of design technology department.

The Strategic Change Of Culture That Affect In The Global Organization

The central issues that affect the culture in the organization, one of the important points are strategic change (Balogun. J, Hailey.H.V, Johnson and Scholes.k, 2003) that managing changes the context-specific and the understanding of the organization context. This change context can allow change agents to make design choices on the basis of the best for the organization.

The authors create a framework (change kaleidoscope) to analyse the change context and the design appropriate contextualised implementation approaches. “change does not happened as a result of plan; it is more complex than that” as the authors found out that management change is not much about the formal planning but is more a the process that can influence both managerial and culture influences.

The authors also talk about “changing organization is about changing people and any implementation approach has to work with the cultural, political and social nature of organization”. In effect talk about organization changing mean people must change but technology , product and physical assets can be change if organization change also the employee that need to change the ways behave.

Furthermore, this study is focus on the change kaleidoscope (please view in the appendices C Figures 3.5.3) that concerned with the organization strategic context. There are three part of layout in the ring in change kaleidoscope as the outer is re


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