Challenges in Implementing Talent Management in Culturally Diverse Organizations

Subject: Employee Management
Pages: 10
Words: 11128
Reading time:
40 min
Study level: PhD

Introduction

As organizations expand into different global and regional markets, this results in a diversified employee demographic creating an organization’s transition from a mono-cultural entity into a multicultural enterprise. Such a change is brought about by the necessity of hiring local talent in a new market to expand the organization’s operations as well as to better understand the peculiarity and cultural norms in certain ethnic and racial communities (Mallol, Holtom & Lee 2007, p. 41). Without such a transition in place, an organization runs the risk of market penetration brought about through ill-conceived marketing and sales initiatives that fail to understand the variations inherent in the new market. Thus, the concept of racial and cultural diversity has become the norm in present-day globalized operations.

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There is no doubt that globalization has had a significant effect on cultural orientation in Qatar. For example, Doha is one of the fast urbanizing cities in the world, which has experienced rapid transformation. Many international organizations have set their regional offices in the city. This has resulted in a population, which is composed, of expatriates from across the globe. Qatar has become a melting pot for languages, cultures, and traditions. In addition, the advent of globalization has led to an increased flow of cultural products to and from Qatar. Due to such effects, it is common for organizations operating in Qatar to employ people from different cultures; hence, the need to put in place talent management strategies that embrace the diversity that may exist in an organization.

As firms develop plans to globalize their operations to Qatar, the demand for well-trained local/expatriate talent to drive business growth is likely to increase. The current trends of increasing recruitment of expatriates and entry of women into the workforce have remarkably altered the demographics of the workplace environment. Multinationals are faced with the challenge of managing highly diverse staff, including balancing gender issues and ex-pat/local workforce attitudes and providing distinctive value propositions for Qatar, female, and expatriate segments.

The different cultural orientations between these groups mean that their aspirations and motivators may not converge; hence, talent management becomes a complicated and challenging task. For most expatriates, financial rewards, family support, and organizational career support are key considerations in the decisions to take up foreign assignments (Collings 2014). The nationals also value financial security as well as opportunities for professional growth. In addition to compensation and career growth opportunities, issues of work-life balance are important to women. Given the different value propositions for ex-pats, nationals, and women, an HR system that accommodates the unique value propositions and various cultural orientations and work attitudes seems to be a viable talent management strategy for culturally diverse organizations.

The paucity of knowledge in talent management in the context of Qatar and the larger GCC region opens up many avenues for further study. It is worth noting that most of the past studies have concentrated on talent management as a general topic. However, the emergence of culturally diverse organizations necessitates the current study. Therefore, the following focuses on the study that is to be applied to investigate the challenges faced in implementing talent management in culturally diverse organizations in Qatar. To utilize the untapped skilled/talented labor in the wake of changing workforce demographics, preferences, and cultural diversity, talent management should be aligned with corporate strategy. The approach entails the integration of the operational objectives of the processes of recruitment, development, and retention with organizational strategy. This study will explore talent management processes – staff recruitment/hiring, training/development, and retention – at the operational level of culturally diverse organizations in Qatar.

Evidence of the significance of talent management in multicultural business contexts can be seen in Hofhuis, Van Der Zee & Otten’s (2012) study, which showed that only 19 percent of present-day companies had not integrated cultural diversity practices into their HR talent management programs. However, despite the fact that cultural diversity is the norm in today’s competitive environment, this does not mean that there are no divergences when it comes to the talent management practices used by HR departments when it comes to dealing with a diversified workforce (Cartledge, Singh & Gibson 2008, p. 33). Mono-cultural talent management (also known as homogenous talent management – single culture) differs significantly from its multicultural counterpart (heterogeneous talent management – more than one culture) when it comes to organizational culture, local business practices, cultural norms and other similar aspects that multicultural talent management needs to take into consideration (Hofhuis, Van Der Zee & Otten 2012, p. 985). It is based on these differences that this literature review will use the three approaches to managing cultural diversity that was developed by Adler. Cartledge, Singh and Gibson (2008) state that parochial, ethnocentric, and synergistic organizations are some of the most widely used strategies when it comes to managing cultural diversity in the workplace. By observing each strategy and using them as the basis behind examining the challenges in talent management in multi-cultural organizations, this study will be able to argue the pros and cons behind their implementation based on each challenge that will be revealed. By critically examining the application of each method, this literature will be able to reveal the adaptability of each type of strategy and feasibility in present-day work environments. The reasoning behind this critical examination would be to determine which strategy would be most effective when it comes to addressing the challenges in managing talent management in culturally diverse organizations.

The outcome of the literature review will be supported by a methodological approach that will examine the opinions of HR managers in various companies in order to understand how they address the challenges in their multi-cultural organizations and whether such methods will mirror the assumptions that will be developed at the end of the literature review. The next sections will detail this study’s views on talent and talent management, cultural diversity, and the methods of managing cultural diversity that will act as the framework for analyses in examining the challenges in talent management in culturally diverse organizations. It will define the individual approaches and provide examples of their application in present-day business environments.

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Defining Talent and Talent Management

Who is a Talent?

One of the current general definitions surrounding the concept of talent when it comes to job roles in an organization is that it is an individual that has the necessary aptitude and skills that help him fulfill the requirements of a job within an organization (Robles 2014, p. 63). Division of talents in most cases is done under the categories of skilled and unskilled labor and in some cases as blue and white-collar jobs. Since particular jobs require special sets of skills and expertise, it is necessary to match a person with those sets of skills with a type of job that would make the best use of them (Robles 2014, p. 64). For instance, a person that has extensive experience in programming is suited for a job in software development and is unlikely to be proficient in a job that involves the incorporation of Six Sigma principles into a corporation’s operational infrastructure.

It is based on this that talents are considered as resources that are made up of the following traits: individual aptitude, experience, and expertise in a particular skill set or profession. The presence of such factors and their general amount (i.e. how many years of experience a person has or his / her level of education whether in the form of a Masters’s or Doctorate degree) supposedly impacts the output that an employee produces (Robles 2014, p. 60). Thus, it is assumed that the more aptitude, experience, and expertise a talent has, the greater his/her supposed contribution to the organization.

Talent – Individual or Acquired Skill?

One of the current arguments in defining talent within the context of job roles within an organization is whether talent is embodied by individuals or by their capability of doing a job that is defined by their acquired skills. When referring to the argument of talent as embodied by an individual, Hedricks, Robie and Harnisher (2008) state that this focuses on perceived capabilities based on the individual in question. For instance, one of the most widely believed assumptions in today’s competitive employment markets is that graduates from Ivy League schools (ex: Harvard, Brown, etc.) or well recognized technical institutions (ex: M.I.T) are talented and, as such, bring more to the organization when it comes to their capabilities. This explains why such schools charge premium tuition fees since merely graduating from these institutions creates a certain level of distinction that people associate with talent (Hedricks, Robie & Harnisher 2008, p. 339). As such, despite the fact that potential employees may or may not necessarily be the best for a particular job, they are hired nonetheless based on their perceived talent since they graduated from top universities.

However, researchers such as Kapoor and Sherif (2012) argue that talents are defined by their acquired skills and not necessarily by what they embody (ex: people from top universities supposedly being the embodiment of top talent). It is from the perspective of Kapoor and Sherif (2012) that talents can be developed from within the organization through training, experience, and guidance, which results in an individual that is capable of doing a particular job (p. 235). In fact, Kapoor and Sherif (2012) argue that it is the role of HR departments to continue to train employees throughout their time in the organization so that they can be prepared to take on more responsibilities and leadership roles based on the perceived needs of the company (p. 235). Thus, under this perspective, the individual does not embody talents; rather, personal skills, experience, and knowledge are the ones that result in an employee being able to contribute towards the operations of an organization.

Both points of view do have valid arguments; however, there are some issues that first need to be taken into consideration before making a final judgment. For instance, the analysis of Julian Chun-Chung and Austin (2008) which examined the success rates of graduates from top Ivy League schools as compared to their non-Ivy League counterparts showed that, based on capability alone, many graduates from Ivy League schools did not possess the supposed ‘top tier’ talent that was correlated to them. This is based on an examination of companies such as Enron, GE, Lehman Brothers, and other large corporations that focused on hiring employees from top-tier universities (Julian Chun-Chung & Austin 2008, p. 42). The results of the study showed that such individuals required the same amount of additional training and experience as their non-Ivy League school counterparts, and as such, calls into question the validity of the concept of talent as defined by individuals since the study clearly showed they were not as talented as initially perceived (Julian Chun-Chung & Austin 2008, p. 39). However, the analysis of Clemmensen (2012) showed that the concept of talent as embodied by individuals does have merit when examining the cases of Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Larry Ellison, Leonard Bosack and dozens of others whose individual talents resulted in the creation of some of the largest corporations today (p. 154). When looking at the results of this analysis, it must be questioned whether the results of the Clemmensen (2012) study display the exception to the rule in the case of talent as embodied in individuals or is it actually an ongoing trend in today’s corporate environment. If the latter is the case, should corporations focus on individual “star” talents or develop their own talents from within the company through training and experience?

It is due to these opposing viewpoints and TM practices that the debate regarding talent as embodied by an individual or through acquired skills will be discussed in further detail in this literature review in the succeeding section on elite and egalitarian perspectives on talent management.

What is Talent Management?

The Origin of Talent Management

The origin of the term ‘talent management’ can be traced to the latter half of the 1990s. It was used to describe ‘the war for talents’ that was characterized by numerous organizations actively attempting to acquire talented individuals through their hiring practices, developing them from within their employee ranks, as well as by enticing them away from rival organizations (Communication openness, conflict events and reactions to conflict in culturally diverse workgroups 2007, p. 105). These organizations operated under the belief that having better-talented individuals within all departments of an organization as compared to their competitors is how they will outperform them. Galperin and Johns (1998) support this assertion by explaining that this phenomenon developed due to the consensus that top managerial talent supposedly helped to drive the success of an organization through more creative outlooks and more effective problem-solving skills. As such, organizations invested a considerable amount of resources not only in acquiring talented employees to lead the organization but also focused on developing and retaining the talented individuals that they had already had (Galperin & Johns 1998, p. 3). It was due to the development of what can be described as the “talent mindset” that the belief arose that organizations were only as strong as their “star employees” were. One example of this practice that can be seen today is the high executive compensation packages that are used as a means of retaining “stars” within the organization (Galperin & Johns 1998, p. 3).

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This particular mindset led towards the development of two opposing viewpoints, elite and egalitarian when it came to talent management practices. These categories will be examined in the next section and will form the basis behind the future arguments that will be presented in this literature review.

Defining Talent Management

Organizations do not operate within a vacuum and have to cope with a variety of factors that can affect their operational performance. Technical and workforce teams act as the backbone of every organization where through their actions the methods of operation within an organization continue unabated (Hofhuis et al. 2012, p. 985). It is under this perspective that the concept of talent management enters into the picture in order to address one fundamental aspect of an organization’s operations, namely the retention and development of talented employees in order to ensure continued operational efficacy within the organization (Hofhuis et al. 2012, p. 985).

Talent management under the previously mentioned situation can be defined as an integration of different subdivisions of HR practices, which consist of five processes. These talent management processes include attracting talented employees, retaining these talented individuals, developing their skills to contribute towards the organization’s operational capacity, motivating them to ensure a certain level of performance and implementing an assortment of engagement strategies to understand what can be done to improve current operations and employee welfare (Hofhuis et al. 2012, p. 988). The combination of these factors is at the core of talent management operations within most companies.

Conflicting Perspectives on Talent Management

Elite or Egalitarian

This section continues the earlier argument on whether an individual embodies talent or if talent is defined through acquired skills. It focuses on the elite and egalitarian perspectives that build upon the earlier points of view stated in the individual or acquired skills section of this literature review.

The elite point of view of talent management operates under the philosophy that organizations should focus on employees that have high potential and high performance (Au & Marks 2012, p. 277). These “top performers” are subsequently singled out when it comes to the implementation of talent management practices and are rewarded disproportionately as compared to their peers. In fact, these individuals are often nominated for placement into more senior positions within the organization under the belief that their previous performance would translate into similar results under a new position with more authority and would enable the organization to be more competitive (Au & Marks 2012, p. 288).

The egalitarian point of view, on the other hand, focuses more on a universal application of talent management in which the focus is not on a small group of “star” employees; instead, the organization would focus on practices that would affect employees as a whole (Miriam et al. 2013, p. 339). This would manifest in continuous developmental programs, performance-based incentives as defined by individual work performance as well as motivational strategies that focus on improving the manner in which employees view the work they do for the company (i.e. employee empowerment, leadership, etc.).

After examining both the elite and egalitarian perspectives, this literature review will argue that the elite perspective is overrated as compared to the supposed “superior outputs” generated by star employees.

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Issues with “Elite” Talent Management

One of the main issues that this literature review has with the supposed superiority of elite talent management is that it correlates talent with success. The basis behind this paper’s assumption has its roots in the studies of Husting (1995), Colema (2006), and Miriam et al. (2013) who showed that there is no guarantee that just because a person has been described as “talented” and is thus supposedly a valuable asset, that this would translate into superior performance within the organization. In support of this assertion is the study of Lee (2009) who showed that “elite star employees” both within an organization and those hired from outside of the organization based on the perception that they are “prime talents” were unable to replicate their levels of performance once they were placed in senior management positions (p. 37). In fact, Lee (2009) noted that the departments they were assigned to actually experienced lower levels of performance. What this shows is that elite talent management is not a one size fits all strategy since there is clear evidence showing that despite the fact someone is considered an “elite talent” this does not necessarily translate into better performance or results that would justify the promotions or worker compensation given to them (Lee 2009, p. 39). In fact, the Broome et al. (2002) study which examined the corporate headhunting practices and how they impact performance stated that the ‘star employees’ that organizations often used headhunting companies to acquire may not be the reason behind the success of organizations. On the contrary, it seemed more likely the systems in place within the organization as defined by all the employees within the organization and their contribution to the operational process of the organization as a whole may contribute to organizational success (Broome et al. 2002, p. 239). Broome et al. pointed out that once an individual was “headhunted” the organization they left did not suffer a significant decline in performance while the company they went into also did not experience a significant increase in performance. What occurred was that a position was vacated and another filled with little in the way of significant impact on operational processes (Broome et al. 2002, p. 242). This was in part due to the support system in place that enabled an organization to continue to function regardless of sudden shifts in employee line-ups. Further evidence of this section’s earlier assumption can be seen in the list below which details the practice of high compensation and the continued hiring of “elite talent” despite negligent and poor performance:

  • Lou Pai (cost Enron hundreds of millions of dollars in losses due to negligent practices in entering new markets in the U.S. – left with a severance package of 275 million dollars) (Shorter-Gooden 2013, p. 208).
  • James F. Gooch (former CEO of Radio Shack who was widely blamed for the 70 percent decline in the company’s stock due to largely ineffective and outdated strategies, left Radio Shack in 2012 – hired by Market Basket in 2014 as a new CEO) (Robles 2014, p. 60)
  • The management team of Albertsons Supermarket – They included CEO Larry Johnston, CTF Robert Dunst, EVP for marketing and food operations Paul Gannon, EVP John Sims, and CFO Felicia Thornton. They were all largely blamed for the collapse of the grocery store chain yet were still given millions of dollars in compensation packages when they left the company and were also subsequently hired as consultants and managers of other companies within the U.S.) (Shorter-Gooden 2013, p. 211).

The examples display a trend in hiring practices when it comes to talent wherein despite obvious issues with their performance, such individuals continue to be hired by other organizations. If performance is what organizations should be after, why do they continue to hire elite individuals whose performance and capacity to contribute to the organization are in serious doubt?

The examples above are not exceptions to the current “elite” talent management system; rather, they show an issue that continues to trouble such a system. It is due to this that this literature review views the current assumption of the elite management perspective as flawed since it presents the assumption that the overall intelligence and capacity for improvement of an organization is based on the elite group of employees it has rather than the system of employees that exist within the organization.

This paper argues that it is the supporting system (which is made up of all employees within the company) and not the “elite” employees that act as the means by which a company is able to improve itself and have better operational processes. Hedricks, Robie and Harnisher (2008) support this point of view when they state that those who advocate for elite talent management fail to take into consideration the effectiveness and use of systems They are blinded by the belief of individual brilliance improving the company (ex: entering into new lines of business, implementing new processes, etc.) that they fail to realize that organizations work by a different set of rules as compared to what can be seen in society (Hedricks, Robie & Harnisher 2008, p. 344). organizations as a whole do not just create products or services; they also execute strategies, compete against rivals, and coordinate the efforts of different employees throughout their many departments (Hedricks, Robie & Harnisher 2008, p. 345). As such, it is from the perspective of these authors that organizations that are the most successful in the above-mentioned tasks are those where the system rather than the individual is the so-called “star”. Thus, the authors stated that one of the most glaring problems in HR practices is the “talent myth” that makes the assumption that it is the people that make an organization smarter when in reality it is usually the opposite that is true (Hedricks, Robie &Harnisher 2008, 347). This literature review agrees with this point of view, and it will be discussed in more detail in the next section of this paper.

Is Talent and thus Talent Management a Myth?

At this point, this literature review has argued that success for an organization is not entirely attributable to “star employees”; rather, other supporting systems also contribute to organizational success. In the words of Cartledge et al. (2008), an organization is not composed of what can be described as an “all-star team”; instead it can be described as an organization with multiple supporting players (i.e. employees) that ensure the organization continues to become a success. It is based on this that it must be questioned whether talent and as a result, talent management is a myth since it is the supporting system and not the employee that “creates a talent” (Cartledge et al. 2008, p. 35).

In this literature review, two sections have been devoted to understanding the concept of talent: the “individual or acquired skills section” and the “elite management” section. They can be narrowed into the view that “talent” is a quality that is attached to certain individuals by virtue of who they are. Thus, those that are “talented” are considered as being “superior” to ordinary rank and file employees. However, based on what has been presented so far, it can be seen that talent is a set of attributes relating to aptitude, experience, and expertise; all of which are highly dependent on the organization they are a part of to gain rather than these aspects being an inherent aspect of an individual.

It is due to this that this paper argues that the concept of “talent as an individual” is a myth since it is not the individual that makes an organization great, as per the findings of this literature review; rather it is the organization that makes them great in the first place. However, does this mean that the concept of talent management is a myth?

Talent management can be considered as means of aligning employees with the interests of the organization. One aspect of talent management focuses on developing an employee’s skills throughout their history in an organization in order to take on a variety of job roles since the value of employees increases over time as they gain more experience and skills that they bring to their job. It is due to this that retaining such individuals becomes an integral aspect of talent management operations which transitions into the second aspect of talent management (i.e. employee retention).

With the organizations expending a significant amount of time and effort in building up an employee, it is obvious that the organizations would want a return on their investment in the form of competent performance over a number of years. The reasons why some HR personnel ask potential employees during the hiring process how long they believe the employee would stay with the organization in order to reduce costs associated with training new employees that could just take the training they gained to an organization’s rivals in the same industry (Julian Chun-Chung & Austin 2008, p. 43). Some demonstrations of this practice come in the form of employee motivation and engagement strategies that HR departments use in order to increase the likelihood of an employee staying for a significant period of time (Julian Chun-Chung & Austin 2008, p. 44). Julian Chun-Chung & Austin (2008) explained the necessity behind such practices as not only correlated to employee retention but also to their overall performance within the organization as well.

What this shows is that talent management is a practice that aligns employees with the interests of the organization under the perspective that it is the system, rather than the individual employees that matter. As such, developing employees within the organization to fulfill long-term goals, ensures an alignment of interests and better operational processes (Walker et al. 2005, p. 319). In order to protect these interests, talent management practices focus on aspects related to retention, motivation, and engagement in order to ensure that the organization as a whole operates based on a long-term plan of employee advancement based on need (Walker et al. 2005, p. 321). This shows that talent management is not a myth since it is aligned with the organization-oriented practice that this literature review has emphasized.

The next section focuses on the egalitarian perspective and how it is aligned with the organization-oriented practice that this paper has so far emphasized.

Egalitarian Perspective on Talent Management

Based on the information that has been shown so far, it can be stated that organizations are inherently dependent on their employees and display the need for implementing methods of managing and maintaining an adequately skilled workforce, a need that is filled by present-day Human Resources departments that are a common aspect in many small, medium, and large enterprises. It is the task of HR departments to match potential employees with tasks that they would be well suited for, and this is where the concept of talent is applied in corporate operations.

As such, Hofhuis et al. (2012) state that under the egalitarian perspective, it is the collective capability of employees that enables an organization to be competitive in present-day markets. Hofhuis et al. ((2012) go even further in this definition by stating that this collective capacity goes beyond individually talented employees. It encompasses the capacity of the employee talent pool as a whole to respond to changes in the competitive environment as a whole, analyze market signals, and implement changes within the organization as needed in order to respond to shifts in consumer demand (Hofhuis et al. 2012, p. 989).

From the egalitarian perspective, an employee can be considered as a form of investment due to the expense related to the time and training that go into each one. It should be noted though that improving and retaining talent within any company is an absolute necessity for any business to succeed in the present-day competitive environment due to the manner in which talented employees can be considered as drivers for increased performance and better operational processes within an organization (Clemmensen 2012, p. 157).

It is based on all these factors that it can be seen that talent management is a necessary and integral aspect of HR operations due to how it can have far-reaching consequences when it comes to the capacity for an organization to be competitive. The next section will focus on defining culture and its impact on corporate operations.

What is Culture?

This literature review has so far discussed that it is not the star employees, but the system in place that supports them that creates good work outputs. It must then be questioned what this perspective means for multicultural talent management. How do you apply egalitarian practices when there are diverse cultures to take into consideration, each with its own point of view? It is due to these questions that the next sections will delve into culture, organizational culture, and the practices that can be implemented in order to address the questions that have just been formulated.

The previous sections helped to define what talent and talent management are and how they apply to the operations of an organization; this section will address the definition of culture and how it is factored in the operational infrastructure of an organization. Before proceeding, it is first necessary to define culture and its application to the behaviors of employees and its influence on the organizational culture of an organization.

Definition of Culture

Culture can be described as the various traditions, belief systems, history, and even customs that are inherent to a particular group of people. This also extends to aspects related to language, nationality, and even ethnicity (Reilly 2015, p. 37). Based on the work of Reilly (2015) which examined the cultural attributes that defined particular nationalities and their impact on talent management within organizations, it was shown that culture, in essence, acts as a set of rules that influence the way people interact with one another and in turn impacts the development of an organization’s culture (Reilly 2015, p. 38). One clear example of this can be seen in Japan’s hierarchical cultural predisposition where a considerable emphasis is placed on respecting individuals that are older than you are. This reveals the cultural peculiarity of using honorifics at the end of an individual’s last name (ex: Masumoto-san) in order to address them (Reilly 2015, p. 40).

When it comes to Japanese business culture this type of cultural peculiarity is demonstrated by the use of terms such as “senpai” when referring to someone that has been in the organization longer than a particular employee or “kouhai” when referring to a junior or someone that has been in the organization for a shorter period. Aside from this, individualism within the culture of Japan is dampened in favor of collective action (Reilly 2015, 39). The impact of this type of social aspect on the organizational culture of Japanese organizations is that seniority in an organization is considered as being far more important as compared to individual capability. For instance, despite the fact that a younger employee in the organization may have a valid idea during a meeting he/she is not allowed to contribute. The only exceptions are if a senior staff member supports the idea (with the idea often being attributed to that senior staff member) and decision-making involves collaboration rather than through empowered individual department leaders (Reilly 2015, p. 41). This differs significantly from the type of culture found in U.S.-based organizations where a significant emphasis is placed on individual performance and the capacity for empowered leaders within the organization to make decisions that can influence significant aspects of the organization’s performance.

Issues with Culture

As explained by researchers such as Downs (2012), different cultures often result in different rules and perspectives on how particular matters should be resolved. This displays the main challenge when it comes to culturally diverse organizations due to the competing cultures and ideologies that are present, resulting in problems when it comes to managing such a diverse group of individuals (Downs 2012, p. 42). Despite the fact that different employees work together in the same environment, they still maintain their own distinct cultural identities that impact the manner in which they view the motivating factors and engagement strategies used by HR departments (Downs 2012, p. 42).

For instance, workers within the U.S. are focused more on individual development and gains due to the way in which the culture in the U.S. focuses more on individualism. As such, the use of extrinsic motivating strategies in the form of monetary rewards based on individual performance is a motivational strategy that ideally works for individuals that developed in such a culture. As explained by Cottrill (2012), while extrinsic motivators are an effective means of motivating and retaining employees, they are not a universally applicable strategy that can work on all cultural groups. Cottrill states that the example of organizations in Denmark, France, and Germany that place a considerable emphasis on the concept of a “work-life balance” wherein employees value their own personal time over higher salaries or monetary incentives shows how a primarily extrinsic based strategy cannot apply to all cultural norms (Cottrill 2012, p. 8). Intrinsic motivating factors are effective when the concept of a “reward” is in line with how much employees are emotionally invested in the job that they are doing based on their positive experiences (Cottrill 2012, 8). This form of motivation focuses more on the emotions and feelings of contentment associated with a particular job, inter-office socialization, and a feeling of “family” being prime examples of intrinsic motivating factors that some organizations (such as those in Japan and Europe) foster that make a person less inclined to leave the organization due to such an experience. Such a strategy is often effective in cultures where there is a greater emphasis placed either on familial relations (seen in the case of many Asian cultures) (Ready & Conger 2007, p. 68).

As such, introducing an individual from an individualistic culture that places an emphasis on extrinsic motivation and putting them into a culture that emphasizes intrinsic motivation and a more integrated and active group dynamic will undoubtedly result in conflict. In fact, researchers, such as Ready and Conger (2007), reveal that it is one of the reasons why ex-pats often find it difficult to integrate into the new organizational cultures that they find themselves in due to how the culture that they grew up in impacted their perception and the manner in which they worked (Ready & Conger 2007, p. 69).

Taking the factors that have been mentioned so far into consideration, it must then be questioned whether it is feasible to implement a talent management strategy in a diverse cultural organization that can be applied without any unforeseen issues.

This section has so far helped to clarify the concept of culture; however, it is necessary to now determine how culture is viewed as a resource under the methods of managing cultural diversity.

Viewing Talent Management under the Parochial, Ethnocentric and Synergistic Context

The parochial and ethnocentric management strategies argue that organizations should only view talent management based on aptitude, experience, and expertise wherein the focus of any hiring and employee development process should be on how well an individual would be able to fulfill a particular role. Such a viewpoint has a considerable amount of backing through the studies of Uren (2007), Clemmensen (2012) and Au and Marks (2012) who explain that the whole point of the hiring process is to ensure that an employee is able to fulfill the needs of the organization based on the job that they were hired/developed to do. The counter-argument to this claim by supporters of the synergistic strategy is that aside from the above-mentioned factors, an organization should also pursue the concept of culture (Miriam et al. 2013, p. 341). For instance, Miriam et al. (2013) argued that even if an organization is operating within its home market, it should actively pursue a culturally diverse hiring and developmental process that takes into account the culture of the individual hired. Culture, for proponents of the synergistic strategy, is considered as a valuable resource since it brings in fresh viewpoints, the possibility of new practices, as well as the creation of methods of communication that may enable the organization to develop itself into a better one (Miriam et al. 2013, p. 341). The problem this research paper has with the viewpoint of the synergistic supporters is that the concept of culture as a “valuable resource” is that it cannot be quantified and thus its value is vague.

The table below helps to display the concept of a measurable resource based on employees and how it can be aligned with the goals of the organization:

Measurable By: Can be aligned with Corporate Goals?
Aptitude Metrics and Employee performance reviews. (Husting 1995, p. 29) Yes, metrics and employee performance directly impact the operational performance of the organization. (Husting 1995, p. 29)
Experience A number of years working in that profession resulted in more knowledge and understanding on how to properly accomplish the tasks associated with it. (Husting 1995, p. 29) Yes, the number of years an employee in their job role influences their capacity to accomplish a multitude of tasks that impact the managerial, administrative, HR or workforce capabilities of the organization. (Husting 1995, p. 29)
Expertise Type of education and training as well as whether they have pursued higher education goals (ex: Masters, Doctoral degrees or advanced training regimes) (Husting 1995, p. 30) Yes, individuals with specific expertise and its corresponding educational attainments would be able to advance into leadership positions within the organization or be able to do their job better based on the knowledge they gained. (Husting 1995, p. 30)

Table 1: Measuring Employees as Resource

What the table shows is that in order for something to be considered as a valuable resource, it must be specific and measurable as well as it must have defined means of being able to align with the goals of the organization. Shorter-Gooden (2013) supports the statement this paper makes regarding culture as a “vague resource”. They state that while numerous organizations have implemented the synergistic management strategy in order to take advantage of the supposed benefits of a multicultural workforce, the inherent benefit of each use of cultural diversity is not measurable as compared to situations where it possibly could not have been applied. What Shorter-Gooden (2013) is stating is that since culture, as a resource, cannot be measured, it is uncertain whether the benefits attained are significant enough to warrant its application.

A counter-argument to this particular viewpoint can be seen in the studies of Robles (2014), Galperin and Johns (1998) and And and Coleman (2006) which show that despite the inherent “vagueness of value” that is attributable to culture, there are perceived benefits to its application. However, despite its apparent benefits, the above-mentioned studies fail to show how the concept of culture should be attached to how organizations should view talent as a resource. This may in part be due to the great number of different cultures that exist and how each could have potentially different influences that cannot be measured resulting in the present-day argument of different viewpoints (Robles 2014; Galperin & Johns 1998; And & Coleman 2006).

For this reason, this literature review supports the notion of the parochial and ethnocentric management styles that the primary method of how organizations should view the concept of talent management is through aptitude, experience, and expertise. This is not to say that this paper fully supports their methodologies when it comes to managing a multicultural workforce; rather, this paper is more in line with the notion that culture is simply far too vague to be considered as an appropriate means of being attributed to the concept of talent management and how it makes an employee valuable.

The next section shows that the influence of local culture makes some types of organizational culture simply incompatible across different cultures and displays how the development of an inclusive culture (i.e. a work culture that embraces diversity in all the procedures in an organization) within a culturally diverse organization would be difficult to achieve.

Understanding organizational Culture

Organizational culture can be defined as the set of values, assumptions, guidelines, and inherent beliefs that are an inherent aspect of how an organization conducts its operations and interacts with its consumers and business rivals (Flynn 2015, 44). Flynn (2015) went into more detail regarding organizational culture by explaining that many of the practices and beliefs that are part of such a system have their origin in the culture from which an organization originates. As such, the behaviors, morals, and guidelines when it comes to how an organization operates via its organizational culture can often be a reflection of the same cultural differences found in a society’s culture (Flynn 2015, 44).

The reason why organizational culture is often a reflection of social culture is how it is necessary for an organization to properly engage its employees in a setting and work environment that is familiar, and is thus more conducive towards the work dynamic that the organization is after (Cartledge et al. 2008, 33). For instance, it is unlikely for a small to medium-sized enterprise in France to adopt a Chinese organizational culture since it is unlikely that its French employees would be able to properly adjust given how divergent Chinese value systems are from its French counterpart. Since employees’ cultures affect their customs, values, and their inherent behavioral processes, and organizational culture of an organization that significantly diverges from that of its employees is unlikely to receive the full benefits of its workforce (Cartledge et al. 2008, p. 33). Kapoor and Sherif (2012) examined evidence of this issue in their study. They delved into the outsourcing industry where diverging organizational cultures between the parent company and its outsourced division resulted in a number of issues related to protocols of communication, methods of planning and implementation and how instructions are carried out from managers to lower-level employees (Kapoor & Sherif 2012, p. 235). The main issue was that some outsourcing organizations attempted to apply the same organizational culture that they had to their foreign employees. This encountered significant resistance and operational inefficiency since the employees were simply not used to the way in which these protocols were set up as compared to the cultural nuances that they are used to (Kapoor & Sherif 2012, p. 239).

One of the best ways to see such an issue at work is to note the divergence between Japanese and American organizations when it comes to the concept of overtime work. There is currently a widely held belief that the Japanese put in amounts of overtime in their jobs as evidenced by the analysis of Galperin and Johns (1998), which examined the Japanese work culture from the 1980s until the present. It showed that on average Japanese employees in numerous firms worked 12 to 14-hour shifts a day. This was initially regarded as one of the reasons behind Japan’s rapid rise in economic capability. However, further analysis revealed that the concept of overtime work for the Japanese was not mainly about actually working but was more due to work hours being connected to the concept of socialization and being part of a “company community” (Galperin & Johns 1998, p. 3). Despite the fact that some employees were done with their jobs, they tended to continue to remain at their desks for “moral support” for the other individuals that were still working. In fact, this resulted in some employees actually working slower so that they could extend their working hours for more socialization (Galperin & Johns 1998, 4). There is even a practice that lower-level employees will not leave the organization’s premises before their manager since it would look as if they were not working hard enough or that they were not being part of the “company community” (Galperin & Johns 1998, 4). It should be noted that this type of “social overtime” is not paid for by the organization and Japanese employees merely do this due to the need for social conformity and the fact that individuals who do not follow the same process are often thought of as “outsiders” to the organization (Galperin & Johns 1998, 4).

When examining this type of organizational culture at work, it is immediately obvious that it simply would not be applicable to American employees who have a greater sense of individuality and would definitely not be willing to stay at work due to what can only be defined as enforced organizational socialization. The importance of this section for this research paper is that it suggests that the influence of local culture makes some types of organizational culture simply incompatible across different cultures. It also shows how the development of an inclusive culture within a culturally diverse organization would be difficult to achieve, especially when taking into consideration the predominant local culture in a particular region or country.

Challenges in Talent Management in a Culturally Diverse organization

There are several schools of thought regarding the implementation of talent management practices regardless of inherent cultural differences. This section of the study will elaborate on the identified challenges in talent management in a culturally diverse organization, which have been derived from the previous sections.

Cultural Incompatibility across Different Cultures and Organizational Cultures

Based on what has been shown in this literature review thus far, it can be concluded that different cultures result in different organizational cultures and, as a result, this creates issues when it comes to the implementation of any egalitarian method of talent management. The previous sections of this study were able to show that it is the systems and not necessarily the individual employees that result in the operational successes enjoyed by a company (Scholz 2012, p. 852). organizational culture can be considered as a type of system in the grand scheme of an organization’s operations resulting in it being somewhat attributable towards the egalitarian perspective where organizations should focus on employees as a whole when it comes to talent management processes (Scholz 2012, p. 852). However, as seen in the section on culture and organizational culture, there are issues when it comes to compatibility across multiple cultures (Scholz 2012, p. 853). Simply put, some cultures (and their resulting organizational cultures) prefer practices and methods that are incompatible with the perspectives and methods of other cultures. Thus, the challenge for talent management in culturally diverse organizations in light of this exposure is being able to address this issue of incompatibility.

Differing Points of View Regarding Motivating Factors

Lee’s (2009) study, which examined the use of motivating factors in the workplace, observed its application under the parochial, ethnocentric, and synergistic methods of managing cultural diversity and discovered a distinct divide in the method of motivation used. The parochial and ethnocentric strategies used a primarily extrinsic method of motivation, while the synergistic method was able to use intrinsic methods (Lee 2009, p. 38). Further, Lee explained that the reasoning behind this was due to the parochial and ethnocentric methods concentrating primarily on performance-based rewards as a facilitator for motivation, while the synergistic strategy focused more on employees’ well-being and how they felt in their work environment (2009, p. 41).

The reason why extrinsic methods of motivation were used in the case of the parochial and ethnocentric strategies was due to the fact that intrinsic methods are simply incompatible with the way in which the above-mentioned methods are oriented. The parochial strategy ignores cultural differences, while the ethnocentric method attempts to suppress and minimize them whenever possible (Lee 2009, p. 37). Extrinsic motivating factors are methods of motivation that focus on external rewards as the means by which employees are motivated to work harder.

As such, extrinsic motivation does not focus on improving the work environment or making employees feel more welcome; instead, its approach is to motivate employees based on increased financial gain (Lee 2009, p. 39). The problem is that some cultures are not as motivated towards financial gain as they are towards intrinsic motivating factors (i.e. internal methods of motivation) (Mallol, Holtom & Lee 2007, p. 41).

Thus, it must be questioned how a company can implement a proper method of egalitarian talent management when there are multiple different cultural perspectives within an organization regarding what motivates them as individuals. Does the company attempt to appeal to them individually, or does it impose a wide corporate egalitarian talent management strategy that takes into account the organization as a whole and avoids individual cultures?

Issues with Employee Engagement Strategies Used

Another of the challenges associated with talent management in a multicultural workforce are issues associated with the employee engagement strategies used. Julian Chun-Chung and Austin (2008) stated that these strategies are meant to enhance the feeling of well-being of employees that makes them more motivated and aligned with the interests of the organization. The problem with its application in a multicultural setting is that different cultures view the concept of engagement is widely different ways (Julian Chun-Chung & Austin 2008, p. 39). For instance, one of the employee engagement strategies used in Japanese companies involves the practice of “nomikai”, which is a social aspect of work where employees get together after hours in order to drink alcohol and eat (Galperin & Johns 1998, p. 4). While on the surface this may not seem like a bad idea, the fact is that the practice is often embedded as a form of social compulsory behavior where employees are not required to attend but do so under social obligations. The method of employee engagement is meant to bring employees closer together, but its compulsory nature may not agree with the cultural attributes of individuals who are outside of the Japanese culture who may want to do something else after work (Galperin & Johns 1998, p. 4). While this is a relatively mild example of differences in employee engagement strategies in order to make employees feel more welcome within the company, it does show certain aspects of cultural conflict when it comes to multicultural organizations (Galperin & Johns 1998, p. 4). For instance, what if the nomikai practice was forced on a person that was Muslim who does not drink alcohol? This has the potential to create significant interpersonal conflict that is primarily based on culture (Galperin & Johns 1998, p. 4). Attempting to force the issue also has considerable negative consequences. As Galperin and Johns (1998) stated that such methods actually contribute towards a decline in employee motivation in heterogeneous employee groups since employees often feel a lack of sufficient “connectedness” when it comes to their relationship with the organization as well as with other individuals within the organization (Miriam et al. 2013, p. 345). Thus, it must be questioned what talent management practices have been implemented when it comes to addressing challenges related to discrimination, communication error, cultural misunderstandings, and a variety of similar instances that are associated with conflicting cultural factors in employee engagement strategies. Does the organization attempt to force the issue, ignore it, or attempt some means of cultural integration in the type of employee engagement strategy that they implement?

Through this section, numerous questions have been developed which focus on determining how multicultural organizations address the challenges to talent management that have been derived from the earlier sections of this paper. The next section focuses on the methods of managing cultural diversity and acts as a framework in examining the strategies that the HR managers that will be interviewed using.

Methods of Managing Cultural Diversity

Parochial Multicultural Management Strategy

This management strategy basically ignores the differences between different cultures in their organizations and focuses on the idea that cultural differences do not have a significant impact on the operational capability of an organization (Cartledge et al. 2008, p. 33). Cartledge (2008) et al. stated that a parochial strategy does not see any significant opportunities that can arise from “pandering” towards the development of internal programs to promote cultural diversity such as forums, educational sessions, or integrated diversity policies (Cartledge et al. 2008, p. 34). In essence, this strategy ignores the concept of culture and places an emphasis on individual performance and the integration of an employee into the greater whole of the organization’s operations regardless of the different types of cultural groups that are a part of the organization (Cartledge et al. 2008, p. 35).

Before proceeding, it is important to note that parochial multi-cultural management is not discriminatory in that it hires individuals from only a specific culture. On the contrary, this management strategy actually does acknowledge that hiring individuals from different cultures and countries are necessary in order to properly expand due to both limitations in staffing as well as their expertise in understanding those markets (Cartledge et al. 2008, p. 36). However, when applied to the practice of talent management, this strategy focuses more on the individual capabilities of the talented individuals hired and how it contributes to the organization rather than how it contributes to a group dynamic based on their culture (Husting 1995, p. 30).

This strategy resolves the challenges involved in managing a multi-cultural organization by simply ignoring them. Individual differences based on culture are viewed as being largely irrelevant in the “grand scheme” of the organization’s operations and, as such, by ignoring these differences when it comes to interacting with other employees, engaging in planning sessions, or other similar activities, operations can proceed without interruption (Husting 1995, p. 33). While such a strategy may appear as being infeasible (i.e. ignoring a problem instead of fixing it), Husting (1995) helps to clarify why it continues to be effective. He states that even where a company does not support multiculturalism, there still exists an underlying organizational culture that acts as the basis for professional interactions and group performance (Husting 1995, p. 34). From the perspective of Husting, employees become aware of what is expected of them when it comes to their job roles, how they should interact with people in the organization, and how to collaborate with other people when it comes to accomplishing group projects through integration (Husting 1995, p. 36). Mallol et al. (2007) go into greater depth regarding this practice by stating that the parochial multi-cultural management strategy can be compared to a one-way integration model. In this framework, new employees joining the company assimilate the basic “identity” and value systems that are a part of the organizational culture, and interact with other people based on such a system (Mallol et al. 2007, p. 46). As such, integration is done through individual discretion and how quickly they can assimilate the underlying organizational culture that they are exposed to.

It should be pointed out that the parochial strategy does not attempt to suppress cultural diversity; rather, it simply focuses on its own way of doing business regardless of the type of cultural groups that an organization consists of (Mallol et al. 2007, p. 45). Examples of this type of strategy in action can be seen in the study of Shorter-Gooden (2003), which examined the expansion of the multi-billion dollar business processing and call center industry into locations such as India and the Philippines.

Shorter-Gooden (2003) noted that a parochial strategy was often in effect wherein the local culture was ignored in favor of the outsourcing organization’s internal organizational culture that focused on metric-based performance (p. 211). Outsourcing organizations such as Convergys and Sykes did not attempt to overwrite the cultural practices that were present; instead, an emphasis was placed on how well employees were able to meet the metrics of the organization. The organizational culture of these two examples did not care what type of culture their employees had and merely focused on how well the employees performed. They also focused on employee internalization in line with the organization’s focus towards professional interaction and the provision of friendly service to its clients (Shorter-Gooden 2013, p. 212). The groups of employees that were managed by team leaders and operational managers were allowed a considerable amount of discretion when it came to their management styles and interactions based on their local culture, so long as obedience to the main culture of the outsourcing company was considered as being their first priority (Shorter-Gooden 2013, p. 213).

Ethnocentric Multicultural Management Strategy

The second strategy when it comes to managing talent in multi-cultural organizations comes in the form of the ethnocentric orientation that acknowledges the inherent differences in culture from the employees of the organization; however, it views this difference as a potential source of conflict instead of as a resource that could improve the company (Robles 2014, p. 60). From the perspective of Robles (2014), this management strategy is narrow and places the strategies, processes, and internal culture of the company as “being better” than other possible alternatives (i.e. the cultural standards, processes, or methods used by people from other cultures) (p. 61). As a result, an ethnocentric management style actively attempts to reduce the effects and sources of cultural diversity in an organization due to the perceived lack of any potential positive impact on the organization’s operations (Robles 2014, p. 62). Examples of this type of talent management in action can be seen in the organizational culture of Japan, which uses extensive use of the ethnocentric model of management (Galperin & Johns 1998, 4). While it is true that the work environment within Japan is largely homogenous (only 6% of the workforce is comprised of foreigners), the fact remains that when foreign workers do enter into an organization they are exposed to a largely ethnocentric management style. Such an ethnocentric culture not only prevents cultural diversity of any sort, but it also happens to avoid individual achievements in favor of group thinking and accomplishments due to its basis on the social aspects of the Japanese culture (Galperin & Johns 1998, p. 4).

In essence, under the ethnocentric perspective, the “home culture” of the company takes precedence over the “foreign culture” of host country nationals. In fact, studies such as those by Au and Marks (2012) confirm that the ethnocentric strategy is actually quite prevalent in many modern international organizations at the present. Their “home standards” (i.e. the cultural and business standards that are based on the home country of the corporation) are used due to the belief in the “superiority” of the methods and organizational culture that is prevalent in the home region of the company. The result is that regardless of the multicultural presence within an organization’s workforce, their different cultures are still viewed as being far less effective than those from the home culture of the company (Au & Marks 2012, p. 277). Examples of multicultural organizations that use the ethnocentric strategy for talent management can be seen in organizations that focus on the nationality of the owner. For example, there are companies like Asus that place an emphasis on it being a Taiwanese company, Wal-Mart who continues to emphasize that it is an American company and many others who base themselves on the country of origin of their company (Au & Marks 2012, p. 279). It is due to the attitude of thinking that other foreign cultures are inferior that the sources and effects of multicultural diversity are removed from the workplace. From the perspective of an organization that uses an ethnocentric strategy, the inclusion of new cultural behaviors into the organization is an undesirable outcome since it not only affects the “purity” of the company’s internal organizational culture, but it may also result in workplace conflict (Au & Marks 2012, p. 279).

As such, by imposing its own culture over that of the employees, this strategy supposedly resolves all potential issues that relate to multicultural management problems in the workplace (Hofhuis et al. 2012, p. 883). In order to bring about its desired culturally homogenous environment within the organization, the ethnocentric strategy focuses on the promotion of a dominant culture that superimposes itself over the different cultures of the organization’s employees (Communication openness, conflict events, and reactions to conflict in culturally diverse workgroups 2007, p. 105). The goal is to change the behavioral patterns of the employees to be more in line with the dominant culture that is being promoted regardless of their cultural background (Hofhuis et al. 2012, p. 883). Hofhuis et al. (2012) go deeper into the application of the ethnocentric strategy by explaining that it in effect promotes a passive organizational culture where all employees are expected to conform and follow regulations. They are required to adhere to home country practices despite the fact that potential alternative strategies could be put into effect that may be more efficient or better for the organization as a whole (Hofhuis et al. 2012, 885). The reasoning behind this is that ensuring conformity and change based on the “top-down” approach (i.e. commands from the top being obeyed by those below as opposed to the horizontal management approach where there is greater equality in the workplace) (Hofhuis et al. 2012, p. 886). For researchers such as Julian Chun-Chung and Austin (2008), such a management style promotes organizational complacency; however, such a practice continues to be in effect today due to its stability and its focus on a centralized approach that ensures that the operations of the company continue unimpeded.

Synergistic Multicultural Management Strategy

The last strategy that will act as the framework for the analysis of the challenges in implementing talent management in a culturally diverse organization is the synergistic approach (Mallol et al. 2007, p. 41). This strategy differs from the previous two that have just been mentioned since it acknowledges that cultural diversity can help an organization and, as such, focuses on increasing its positive impacts while reducing its negative effects (Mallol et al. 2007, p. 44). This strategy focuses on the idea that by combining the best of different cultural approaches into the organization’s strategies, the organization would be able to develop several unique approaches that would enable it to better operate in local and foreign markets (And & Coleman 2006, 79). This is done through a variety of programs that are meant to help employees recognize the various aspects related to cultural diversity, how multiculturalism is good for the organization, and how employees from different backgrounds can develop cooperative relationships that would help to enhance the operations of the organization as a whole (And & Coleman 2006, p. 83). An example of this type of strategy in action and its effectiveness can be seen in the case of Windows Vista and how Microsoft implemented a synergistic strategy in order to resolve its problem. The developmental process behind Windows Vista was considered as being extremely problematic for Microsoft, which resulted in a product that was not well received by consumers (And & Coleman 2006, p. 84). The reason behind this is connected to the fact that the software had had its development scattered across numerous regions, timelines, and countries. The end result is that the cultural differences between different work teams as well as different timelines created considerable issues when it came to proper communication and collaboration. In order to resolve this issue, the synergistic strategy applied by Microsoft involved the implementation of new education programs that were meant to help different teams better understand the multicultural workforce that they were part of (And & Coleman 2006, p. 87). Aside from this, there were also instances of cultural exchange between the different global teams as well as the implementation of better processes involving methods of communication between people of different cultures (And & Coleman 2006, p. 87). The result of these endeavors was a far smoother developmental process resulting in massive improvements in both technical developments as well as the speed at which the software was created (And & Coleman 2006, 89). As seen in the positive responses regarding the Windows 7 system as well as Windows 8.1, the development process of Microsoft using synergistic multicultural talent management was effective in improving employees’ outcomes. It also ensured that the organization was able to retain talented individuals that helped to continue to develop new versions of the software for the organization. What this shows is that synergistic management can be used effectively in order to manage the challenges inherent in a multicultural organization.

Conclusion

What this literature review has argued is that systems, not “star employees”, lie at the heart of the corporate performance. With these systems in mind, this paper has established how a multicultural workforce creates challenges in the application of these systems under an egalitarian talent management framework. This is due to how different cultural backgrounds often cause interpersonal conflict and stifle some talent management strategies. To shed more light on this issue, this paper delved into the three most prominent management strategies of resolving multicultural workforce issues, namely, parochial, ethnocentric, and synergistic. These strategies show how organizations attempt to resolve the issue of multiculturalism by ignoring it, replacing it with their own culture, or integrating it. From the application of strategies, e.g., the parochial model or the ethnocentric model, the effectiveness of methods of talent management is cast into serious doubt despite the fact that they are among the most widely used strategies today for managing multicultural organizations. This literature review argues that despite the manner in which the parochial and ethnocentric models attempt to reduce workplace conflict by outright ignoring the issue of diversity or by superimposing the organization’s culture on the employees, they actually result in a highly flawed talent management strategy that would cause more problems than it actually solves. This is due to the potential for employees to feel discouraged, lack motivation, and be more likely to leave the organization, resulting in problems related to retention.

In order to shed more light on this issue and examine how organizations address the challenges brought up by this paper, the researcher will conduct an examination on what methods present-day HR departments use in order to address the challenges of talent management in a multicultural organization. The parochial, ethnocentric, and synergistic strategies will be used as a frame of reference in order to examine where the strategies of the HR departments fall under and why they chose such an orientation.

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