Term paper on Cultural Differences

Crossbred corporate culture
Effectively working multicultural teams have a strong “hybrid culture”, which means the set of consistent rules and actions, expectations, as well as the team members’ own perception of how individuals within the team develop, share experiences and behave due to the mutual communication, since the general expectation of team members provide effective communication and, as a result, effective work (Novinger, 2001). The team creates this “hybrid culture” based on its ability to generate and retain the four basic characteristics that were identified by Charles Snow:

1. Objectives (the contribution to business strategy, revision of strategy and subsystems of the company). Defining a common goal enhances commitment of the team to this purpose, and also facilitates their understanding of the tasks and skills, necessary for discharge of these duties (Sue, 2006).

2. Role expectations. It is important for team members to be aware of the role expectations and their responsibilities to avoid interpersonal conflicts. If team members have a clear understanding of roles within the team, it’s much less likely that they would be in conflict with each other. If conflicts do arise, then the awareness of the role structure provides a constructive basis for resolving them.

3. Clarity of rules and social interaction. The team members must clearly understand what the rules of communicating with each other are, how conflicts should be resolved and how resources and rewards should be distributed within the team. Rules that are accepted by the team members are the key guides in most situations (Rizvi, 2011).
4. Monitoring and reporting. The members of multicultural teams are often geographically and sometimes temporarily dispersed, that makes it necessary to coordinate their work. Manager, as no other has to follow that culture (Fine, 1995).

Corporate culture is a system of personal and collective values, taken and shared by all members of the company (Natale, 1995). On the other hand, the corporate culture implies a set of methods and rules for solving problems of external adaptation and internal integration of workers, rules, justified themselves in the past and validated their relevance in the present.

In the system of human resource management in multicultural organization corporate culture plays a crucial role. Many companies spread culture, providing better communication between headquarters and subsidiaries and between the branch leaders from different countries. Managers move from one country to another, expanding the views of these people and increasing their commitment to the values and goals of the corporation. People who have been trained at the headquarters of the firm, as a rule, think and act as its employees (Kolimon, 2011).
The difficulties managers are faced to in multicultural teams

Every manager, who is leading people from different cultures, faces several challenges. Complexities that are successfully solved by means of cultural tools by the manager of multicultural businesses include the following:

1. Cultural communication barriers in cooperation. Communication with representatives from other cultures may encounter unforeseen difficulties. The potential communication disturbances due to cultural factors are:
• interference as a result of rejection of differences in culture;
• distortion in the perception of reality;
• patterns of thinking;
• ethnocentric arrogance.

2. The diversity in management styles in different countries. Developed countries (North America, Northern Europe) have a democratic (participative management style), whereas in developing countries (including those with the high level of development) authoritarian, paternalistic methods are dominated (Egge, 1999).

3. Different ways in the understanding problems and taking decisions. The operating procedures are a reflection of values, attitudes and behaviors that are inherent for participating in the process of solving problems people. The multicultural team can work effectively only when its members achieve the clarity of understanding of their goals.
4. Potential conflicts due to the differences in labor motivation. Motives are determined mainly by the social situation and marital status.

Therefore, in countries of transitional type material needs and the need for security are dominated whereas in many industrialized countries the desire for self-development and the achievement of ambitious goals in life comes to the fore (Diamante, 1994).

Distinctions as to the standards of different cultural groups’ representatives can usually cause problems for the executives in multicultural organizations.

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