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By gg07403230709 Dec 09, 2012 1498 Words
Culture influence on business management (Research Methodology)

The objective of this study tests theory is "Culture influence on business management".

Epistemology and Ontology

There are two kinds of question could use in this study, epistemology and ontology.

Epistemology theory shows the things we know about them from reading or learning. And making the decisions depend on the knowledge or after some researches. There are three key points questions can following about it:

What is the knowledge?
How to receive the knowledge?
How can we know what we really know?

Most of the arguments around this area are about analysis the knowledge nature how to collect with truth, belief, justification in a natural science model. And it also means that the production of knowledge and the scepticism to different knowledge in particular positivism. This is a chart which can follow the principle of that: [pic]

In this theory, it includes positivism and interpretivism.

Positivism includes application of natural science methods to social science research; phenomenalism; deductivism; inductivism; objective, value-free researcher; distinction between scientific and normative statements.

"Interpretivism is predicated upon the view that a strategy is required that respects the differences between people and the objects of the natural sciences and therefore requires the social scientist to grasp the subjective meaning of social action"(Bryman, 2011).

On the other side, there are four key points questions can following about ontological:

Social ontology: the nature of social entities?
What kinds of objects exist in the social world?
Do the social entities exist independently of our perceptions of them? Is social reality external to social actors or constructed by them?

In this theory, it includes objectivism and constructionism. Objectivism is a position of ontology that social problems and it means the independent of social actors. It means there are the independent or individual actors in social phenomena and the categories as we use the normal conversation everyday.

Constructivism shows the social problems and it means the social phenomena produced by social actors. The social phenomena also produced by the social communication. And this situation is in a constant state of revision. The accounts of researcher are constructed in the social world. "Knowledge is viewed as indeterminate"(Bryman, 2011).

Combine these theories in this study, the social phenomena shows people are independent or individual actor living in the world. The social development is depend on people's normal social communication activity. In this process, knowledge is not indeterminate, it need to develop and improve through people activities.

Topic Background

There are a large number of information illustrates that culture influences on business management. As Hofstede builds a theory of culture, there are four cultural dimensions such follow by: Power distance; Uncertainty avoidance; Individualism vs. Collectivism; Masculinity vs. Femininity. Much of the interest in national cultures and cultural differences in recent times has been accompanied and reinforced by two emerging concerns (Leat, 1998):

• The national business activities, multinational cultural and business management effect to their staff face the multiplex developmental problems quickly; • On the other hand, the "American theories" connecst to the traditional and dominant position in the organizational structure, company behavior and management, all of these depend on and illustrates "American culture".

In nowadays, culture really influences business management as well as this information. That is an important topic in the world now.

Hypothesis, deduction and induction

These are the hypothesis of this study:

If cultural background is the key point to people when they manage their own company, then this company management will follow its cultural style.

If charisma is an important factor when the leader manages its own organization, then this organization will effort by its personal style.

In this study, it will use the quantitative research method which includes objectives, questions, hypothesis and represent the specific restatements and purpose of the study (Creswell, 1994). These restatements need to take the form of research questions and objectives in the survey project. And in this research, they are hypothesis.

The features of quantitative research:

A measurement of social variables;

Common research designs: surveys and experiments;

Numerical and statistical data;

Deductive theory testing;

Positivist epistemology;

Objectivism view of reality likes the external to social actors.

Following by the method, this study will use the deductive mode to research the hypothesis, it can follow the stages such as:



Data collection


Hypotheses confirmed or rejected

Revision of theory

The deduction method is researching in the quantitative format and it provides a theory orientation in a quantitative research study. It is also a guide to discuss a theory in the early of the project or plan. It could be insert to the introduction or in the literature review, after the hypotheses or research questions, or in an individual section of the study. A research design shows out a quantitative or numbers of population sample through the collection data of asking people the same questions (Fowler, 1988). The deductive research provides a method to test theory or hypotheses to be accepted or be rejected. Each position of deduction insert to the study has its advantages and disadvantages. Such as the deduction method has the advantage to insert follow the part of hypothesis if that is a quantitative research. Because that will be a clear content function to show out the research method to reader.

On the other hand, there is another theory such as induction. It shows the principle follow of this:

data --> theory;
generalisable inferences from observations;
qualitative research /grounded theory.

Quantitative vs. Qualitative

These are two useful methods in the business research. And there are different strategies such as the general orientation to social research; epistemological foundations and ontological basis.

Quantitative research depend on use the deduction mode to test theory, it shows the natural science model in particular positivism. And it also develop in objectivism.

Qualitative research based on the induction mode to generate theory. It depend on the interpretivism and constructionism.


It is not an unexpected result that questionnaire is a widely way to collect data in the research strategy. The reason for that is everyone has been asked for the same questions, it offers an effective method to collect large numbers of data before quantitative analysed. Especially the focal respondents are students, questionnaire also is a high performance-price ratio quantitative research method to collection more precise data. It needs to pay attention to that is it may be unable to go back to those individuals who choose to remain anonymous and collect additional data using another questionnaire. The response rate and the reliability and validity of the data collect will depend on the design of the questionnaire. Response rates, validity and reliability can be maximized by:

Careful design of individual question;
Clearly and pleasing layout of the questionnaire;
Lucid explanation of the purpose of the questionnaire;
Pilot testing; carefully planned and executed administration.

In order to investigating cultural influence on business management and this questionnaire prepares a series of questions includes different part of relationship management, motivation management and time management.

The questionnaire will distribute to 18 students in the classroom of Plymouth University. The respondents of this questionnaire are 8 female and 10 male students. The majority of the subjects are studying in the pre-master course of Msc Business Management. All the MBM projects students are international students in UK, the respondents have own native cultural cognition and the new knowledge learning from UK. That is the reason why to choose them to be the respondents in this study.

This questionnaire includes two parts: general information and the attitude to cultural influence on business management. The questionnaire issue is about the different cultural influence on business management between USA and Chinese company. The result will shows different attitudes to different cultural which effects and illustrates the reason why it will be differences on this area.

Due to the purpose of this study which compares about the different attitudes to different cultural which effects on business management, the questionnaire includes closed and open questions. It is a better way to collect standardized answers and collect more enough complete data.

In the questionnaire, it must define the objectives of research issue, such as "why culture influence on business management?" or "how to control the culture factor in business management". Deciding the sources of data, target the respondents to collect the primary data. Collecting data in time, it will make researcher make sure have enough time to finish whole the project. To summary the data in objectively, try to present the 100% true data from the feedback of the questionnaire. Analysing the data carefully and concluding with measures in the process. Interpreting the results in terms of the theory situation and report the findings to reader correctly.


Bryman, A. (2011). Business research methods. oxford, the oxford university press.

Creswell, J. (1994). Research design : qualitative & quantitative approaches. California ; London : Sage Publications.

Fowler, F. J. (1988). Survey research methods. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.

Leat, M. (1998). Human resource issues of the European Union. London: Financial Times Management.

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