Business Etiquette Around the World

Business Etiquette Around the
World & Hoefstede Analysis
Dr. Oliver and global citizens
Etiquette, manners, and cross cultural, or
intercultural communication have become critical
elements required for all International and Global
Business executives, managers, and employees. As
international, multinational, transnational, multi
domestic, and global business continues to expand
and bring people closer, the most important
element of successful business outcomes may be
the appreciation and respect for regional, country,
and cultural differences - known as cultural
Cultural Diversity
The concept of diversity encompasses acceptance and
• It means understanding that each individual is unique,
and recognizing our individual differences.
• The differences can be along the dimensions of race,
ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic
status, age, physical abilities, religious beliefs,
political beliefs, or other ideologies.
• It is the exploration of these differences in a safe,
positive, and nurturing environment.
Cultural Diversity
• It is about understanding each other and
moving beyond simple tolerance to embracing
and celebrating the rich dimensions of
diversity contained within each individual.
Golden Rules
• Avoid making instant judgments or
assumptions about people from different
cultures regarding their working style or
• Try to do some research on any culture you
will be working with
• Try to understand how others might view your
• Remember that not all problems
encountered in international situations are
the result of cultural differences – the issues
could be personality-based, technical or
• Just because people do things differently in
another country does not mean that they are
necessarily wrong in their approach
Working With Different Cultures
• Your place of birth and childhood influences can
have a major impact on your approach to work
and business later in life
• We are all ‘programmed’ to behave in a certain
way and to respond to issues differently
• Very few people are able to shake off this early
programming and it is vital that you acknowledge
and recognize that you have a certain ‘cultural
style’ which may seem alien to other nationalities
• It is as important that you understand your
own cultural approach as it is to understand
the approach of others
Geert Hoefstede
He is a well-known pioneer in his research of
cross-cultural groups and organizations and
played a major role in developing a systematic
framework for assessing and differentiating
national cultures and organizational cultures. His
studies demonstrated that there are national
and regional cultural groups that influence
behavior of societies and organizations.
Hoefstede Dimensions
His most notable work has been in developing
cultural dimension theory. The five dimensions
are; Power Distance, Individualism, Uncertainty
avoidance, Masculinity, and Long Term
Hofstede named this Power Distance (PD or
PDI). It is the extent to which less powerful
members expect and accept unequal power
distribution. High PD cultures usually have
centralized, top-down control. Low power
distance implies greater equality and
• Malaysia, Panama, and Guatemala rated the
highest in this category. The US was 38th.
• Hofstede named this Masculinity versus
Femininity (MAS). It focuses on the degree to
which “traditional” gender roles are assigned
in a culture; i.e., men are considered
aggressive and competitive, while women are
expected to be more gentle and be concerned
with home and family.
• Japan led the list, followed by Austria and
Venezuela. The US was 15th.
• Hofstede named this Uncertainty Avoidance
(UA or UAI). It defines the extent to which a
culture values predictability. UA cultures have
strong traditions and rituals and tend toward
formal, bureaucratic structures and rules.
Greece was number 1, followed by Portugal
and Guatemala. The US was 43rd.
• Hofstede named this Long- versus Short-term
Orientation (LTO). It is the cultural trait that
focuses on to what extent the group invests
for the future, is persevering, and is patient in
waiting for results.
• China led this dimension, followed by its
oriental colleagues, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
The US was 17th.
When working in other countries and with
people from overseas, first research their
national culture along these dimensions, then
check first whether the people use these. By
default and when talking with national groups,
take account of these factors.
Global Citizens’ Panel
• the idea of Global Citizenship is commonly known as
people who consider themselves citizens on the global
level; is the process of international integration arising
from the interchange of world views, products, ideas,
and other aspects of culture
• A cosmopolitan community might be based on an
inclusive morality, a shared economic relationship, or a
political structure that encompasses different nations.
In its more positive versions, the cosmopolitan
community is one in which individuals from different
places (e.g. nation-states) form relationships of mutual