The Chinese Cultural System: Cultural Management.

Topics: Cross-cultural communication, Culture, Geert Hofstede Pages: 5 (1440 words) Published: February 27, 2013
Culture is the “the collective programming of the mind distinguish the members of one group or category of people from another” (Hofstede, 2011). The definition of culture tend to gives us the ability to understand, interact people for other culture that may be drastically different from our own. The 21-century may be known as the century of the “global world”. The growth of interdependence and cooperation among countries, and international companies, do not claim that the cultural difference is decreasing. Instead, Culture difference increasingly impact on most aspects of people’ activities. Regarding business management, it is clear that most of the international companies cannot make more profit because of neglect of cultural differences. On the one hand, the globalization has created opportunities for corporations to cooperate among countries. On the other hand, it also has brought a series of concern about how to effectively manage partnerships with different culture.

China, as the largest trading countries and probably the largest nation being invested from other counties, has clearly been a vital participant because of the globalization during the past twenty years (Zhang, 2003). A large number of international companies invest China to seek opportunities to make a profit, especially American companies.(Liu 2002) While there exist wide differences between China and USA regard to their economic political social and personal characters dimensions. It is important to understand culture about other counties for resolving business relationships. With the increasing of cross-cultural business, knowing other culture is also helpful to manage their foreigner employees. To clearly classify the difference between China and American, Hofstede’ four cultural dimensions will be used including Power Distance, Individualism/Collectivism, Masculinity/Femininity, Uncertainty Avoidance and Long Term Orientation. Five cultural dimensions of Hofstede are used to measure the cultural differences of different countries.

The purpose of this essay is to understand the differences between Chinese culture and American culture based on Hofstede’ five cultural dimensions. But this essay just looks more deeply into four dimensions: Power Distance, Individualism/Collectivism, Masculinity/Femininity, and Uncertainty Avoidance. And then analyze the effect of cultural difference on management between Chinese society and American.

Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore all of them are “predominantly Chinese” societies (Mum, 2001). Therefore, Hofstede’ (1991) work shows the scores of the cultural dimension between Chinese and American in table I. Some differences must be found. In terms of Power Distance, Singapore has the highest score, 74, and then Hong Kong 68 as well as Taiwan 58, while USA has 40 score. It is obvious that China is centralized while America is decentralized. On the Individualism index, it also can be seen from the table that Chinese countries receive much lower average scores 21 than America 63. It indicates that Chinese countries are lower in Individualism than American. In term of Masculinity, how influential male and female play roles in society, it indicates from the table that American tend to be medium Masculinity, while Chinese society tend to be medium Femininity. In addition, Chinese society has higher average marks than American for Uncertainty Avoidance, which indicates that the feeling of uncertainty is higher than American’s.

Power Distance is the extent to which individuals respond to inequalities in different organizations and institutions (Hofstede, 2011). Chinese society is centralized, meaning there is “ high level of inequality of power and wealth with the society” (patent, 2009). In term of society, meaning farther should be given the utmost respect in the family. On the other hand, American is decentralized, and leans toward egalitarianism. “This is indicative of a greater equality between social...
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