INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
The main causes of the differences between Swedish managers and Spanish employees come as a result of the scepticism that the Swedish management style creates. The avoidance of formal planning and unwritten manuals makes Spanish employees feel confused about their tasks. So, instead of encouraging learning and taking own initiatives as individuals they become inefficient due to the fact that they are waiting for someone to tell them what to do. Showing awareness to costs, searching for new solutions, team spirit and informal relationships with managers is something that differs from what is considered as normal. For someone used to hierarchical organizations and its clear definitions of responsibilities and knowing who’s in charge there’s no surprise that Spanish react with suspiciousness to what they are exposed to. The informality in the recruitment based on competence and not belonging is also something new and unknown. As IKEA has created a culture with no formal career path the culture becomes even harder for other cultures to understand since they see no direct linkage between their work and rewards. Understanding something built on humbleness and learning form experience as prerequisites for moving up the ladder will of course appear as weird for someone used to more structured environments. Moving up the promotion ladder is important to Spanish employees, with IKEAs system there is no clear definition of when or how you will move up except through long-term commitment. During these circumstances Spanish employees are likely to feel more threatened than supported by the system.
The main causes of cultural clashes between managers from Sweden and employees in Spain originate from difference in socio- cultural dimensions and a lack of understanding for these cultural values. Following information would have been useful for IKEAs management: It has been stated by Hofstede that Swedish organizational and...
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