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Hofstede

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Hofstede Graph Reflection

Think through the following questions and come to class ready to discuss them: a) How would you describe your cultural profile (where you score “high” or “low”)? * Have you noticed any similarities or differences compared to the dimensions of a country you identify with culturally (go to www.geert-hofstede.com)? b) How do these cultural characteristics affect your behavior as a consumer? c) -------------------------------------------------
How do these cultural characteristics affect your managerial decision-making style?

a) I found it very interesting to compare my results to the various countries’ profiles. I scored very high on individualism, but then scored quite low on uncertainty avoidance. While observing Germany’s cultural profile, I noticed that they too had a very high individualism aspect. Similarly, I looked at China’s uncertainty avoidance, and they too scored very low. This means that they are not as worried about ambiguity. I guess this means that like China, I am not as worried with avoiding uncertainty. Likewise, I agree with the Germans, that having a lot of individualistic sentiment is important and crucial. b) These cultural characteristics affect my behavior as a consumer by instilling certain values and beliefs that control how I make my decisions. Countries that have a much higher individualistic view are going to be able to spend a lot more money on various/random goods. For example, Germany is similar to the United States, where people have a lot of freedom. They can purchase whatever they want, and so as a consumer, they are much more open to buying a wide variety of products. Similarly, the aspect of masculinity/femininity plays a major role in how people behave as consumers. With cultures that have a very low sense of femininity, women are not going to have the freedom to purchase the same items that a woman will buy in the U.S. In America and many parts of Europe, there are very sexual ads that are acceptable in public; this is not the case in the Middle East.

c) The cultural characteristics affect our managerial decision-making styles by instilling certain values that we deem acceptable. Someone that has a high power distance will accept and promote a rigid hierarchical order. They will want a lot of separation in decision making between a boss and his workers. Likewise, a country that has a strong masculinity complex will not treat their women employees the same way as the men. This can be a major factor in the working environment that a lot of people struggle with. In America, we have the luxury of having quite an evenly balanced workplace, but in many countries that is not the case at all.

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