Cross Cultural Management Research

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Key Course Concepts

“Organizational Culture has been defined in several different ways. In its most basic form, organizational culture can be defined as the shared values and beliefs that enable members to understand their roles and the norms of the organization” (Hidgetts, Luthans, & Doh, pg. 10).

Practices of each Company


Starbucks embraces diversity to create a place where all employees can be themselves and treat each other with respect and dignity. “Starbucks has partly embraced the “when in Rome” approach Doctoroff advocates” (Starbucks Banks on the Middle Kingdom’s Middle Class, 2008). The company has adapted to local conditions, creating joint ventures with Chinese partners and seeking to hire experienced local executives to run its operations rather than importing them from abroad. Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz believes a good China strategy consists of four main elements: establishing and maintaining good relationships with government officials and local joint-venture partners; targeting nascent middle class beyond first-tier cities; finding and hiring experienced local executives, and adapting business models and systems to local conditions and requirements” ( Starbucks Banks on the Middle Kingdom’s Middle Class, 2008).

Riordan Manufacturing can learn from Starbucks by embracing diversity and creating an environment where all employees can work together and treat each other with respect. Riordan can also mimic Starbucks and adapt to the Chinese culture. “Such adaptation requires an understanding of cultural diversity, perceptions, stereotypes, and values” (Hodgetts, Luthans, & Doh, 2005, p. 1). Similar to Starbucks, Riordan’s CEO has chosen Lu Chen, Assistant Plant Manager, to take over for the previous Director of Operations in China. This will aid Riordan in on-site support, such as local contracts, personnel hiring, legal assistance and negotiations. “As a result, more American...
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