Cross Cultural Factors in Human Resource Management

Bibliographic Citation

Society for Human Resource Management. “Selected Cross-Cultural Factors in Human Resource Management.” Research Quarterly, vol. 1, no. 1, 2008, pp. 1-9.

Introduction

The 21st century has been characterized by numerous changes and developments. Many workplaces are currently characterized by diversity. This is the case because there are many people from different ethnic, cultural, and regional backgrounds. Managing this kind of workforce can be troublesome. That being the case, human resource (HR) managers should be ready to analyze and explore the unique issues associated with diversity (Adewale and Anthonia 122). In order to achieve this goal, HR managers should be on the frontline to promote education in order to ensure more leaders and workers have adequate cross-cultural competences. The approach will make it easier for the HR to serve the employees much better and eventually drive performance.

Intended Audience

The author of the article is the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). This agency is the largest association devoted to evidence-based HR practices. The targeted readers include HR managers, businesses, and international entrepreneurs. The author’s mission has been to provide HR professionals with comprehensive and recent resources that can promote their strategic goals (Society for Human Resource Management 3). Such approaches can make it possible for companies to manage their diverse workplaces and align their practices with the cultural attributes experienced in different regions.

Author’s Purpose

The purpose of writing the article was to guide and sensitize HRM departments in order to meet the cross-cultural needs of their diverse workplaces. The author focused on the emerging trends and issues that must be taken seriously by HR managers to drive organizational performance (Society for Human Resource Management 3). This article echoes the ideas and concepts focusing on the importance of diversity and culturally sensitive HR practices.

Definition of Important Terms

  1. Collectivism: The term “collectivism” is a cultural value dimension focusing on the power of groups.
  2. Power distance: This term refers to the manner in which power is shared or distributed within an institution.
  3. Globalization: This is the process through which firms operate globally or influence international business practices.
  4. Cross-culture: The term describes issues pertaining to two or more cultural groups.
  5. Uncertainty avoidance: The process through which members of a given workplace or community cope with uncertainty and anxiety.
  6. Individualism: Cultural value dimension focusing on the needs, achievements, and expectations of a person.

Fact or Opinion

The article “Selected Cross-Cultural Factors in Human Resource Management” indicates clearly that diversity has become a reality in many workplaces. This is true because many companies have been on the frontline to hire employees from different backgrounds. Globalization has emerged as a powerful force that continues to catalyze this kind of development. This process has led to numerous benefits such as increased profitability, improved business processes, and acquisition of new ideas (Kumar 51). Unfortunately, the current HR manager has realized that the management of this kind of workforce is something more complex than initially expected.

The world is constantly changing due to the wave of globalization. More companies are focusing on the best approaches to do business in different corners of the world. The emergence of many multinational corporations is something that has revolutionized the major functions of business management. The greatly affected function is that of human resources (HR). Many firms are opting to do business in different regions in an attempt to maximize profits. In order to succeed, such companies must be aware of the issue of cultural diversity.

That being the case, it would be appropriate for HR managers to be updated and aware of the emerging cross-cultural issues in the globalizing world. A global mindset is needed in order to ensure HR managers have the potential to work adequately across functional, cross-cultural, and organizational boundaries. Appropriate learning processes and operations will ensure more people develop a global mindset (Society for Human Resource Management 7).

Central Arguments and Conclusions

HR professionals who are aware of the major cultural value dimensions will be able to come up with informed decisions and practices that can maximize performance (Banerji 438). Power distance supports the idea or concept of hierarchy. Power distance can either be high or low. Uncertainty avoidance focuses on minimizing unpredictable consequences within an organization. High-context cultures usually rely on the internalized environment or social context (Kumar 52). Low-context cultures focus on the use of direct messages.

Collectivism promotes the power of groups. This is contrasted with individualism whereby the needs, achievements, and expectations of individuals are considered. The fifth dimension is known as long-term orientation. This kind of dimension shows that cultural values “will be future-looking, including thrift, perseverance, and hierarchical relationships” (Society for Human Resource Management 2).

From this analysis, it is evident that people (or employees) will tend to establish the best rapport depending on their respective cultural attributes or values. Effective intercultural communication is essential in order to ensure businesses realize their goals. In order to have a successful business, it is appropriate to focus on the economic and cultural contexts of the targeted culture (Chuang 7).

Companies that want to realize their goals should begin by maintaining and establishing the best relationships with the right distributors and suppliers. The cultural affiliations, notions, and concepts associated with the employers or suppliers will be considered in order to establish the most desirable relationships (Society for Human Resource Management 3). Emerging issues and conflicts will be addressed using culturally competent models.

Relationship building is another powerful practice that guides and empowers more individuals to focus on the targeted objectives. In order to support relationship business, it is necessary for HR managers to use appropriate cross-cultural communication. It would be necessary for HR professionals to come up with adequate HRM policies and practices that will support the creation of the best or sustainable working environment (Banerji 436). Such practices will also ensure the HR team engages in cross-cultural training.

Core values that can support effective cross-cultural relationships such as respect, integrity, and support have emerged (Chuang 11). Individuals from diverse backgrounds within a given organization should be ready to read other people’s body languages. This practice will ensure the right relationship or collaboration is maintained in the targeted organization. The new relationship will dictate the nature of performance in the firm.

Firms should have proper HRM policies outlining how malpractices and misbehaviors in the workplace can be dealt with (Dartey-Baah 42). The implemented policies or laws should be consistently applied. They should also be fair and culturally sensitive. Such laws will be supported by the targeted employees and eventually encourage the employees to relate positively with one another. It is also necessary for HR managers to create the best environment whereby specific attributes such as respect, commitment, and integrity are taken seriously (Banerji 439).

Whenever making decisions, it is necessary for HR experts to consider the cultural attributes of the targeted country. This strategy is critical because different cultural groups to have diverse decision-making models (Dartey-Baah 43). When the HRM is aware of the cultural differences involved throughout the decision-making process, it will be possible to come up with better concepts that have the potential to support the changing needs and expectations of the targeted individuals.

Feedback should be provided in every workplace. This practice is necessary because every employee should be guided and empowered depending on the issues experienced in the working environment. Cross-cultural feedback is therefore needed whenever managing businesses from the global perspective (Society for Human Resource Management 6). The feedback should be taken seriously in multinational firms. Ideas gained from employees’ feedback should be used to implement better practices. Organizational learning is necessary in order to minimize cross-cultural conflict. This goal can be achieved by putting appropriate systems that can address every emerging cultural issue.

Experiment or Study

In order to come up with the best information, the author embraced the concept of a systematic review of the literature. Using a number of peer-reviewed and authentic materials, the author managed to collect evidence-based information that can be used adequately by HR managers (Society for Human Resource Management 6). The approach presented useful arguments and conclusions that can be used by multinational firms.

Expected Information or Augmentation

In 2008, the Society for Human Resource Management developed a report titled “Workplace Forecast.” The report outlined several trends that could impact the workforce in the next few years. Some of the trends included increased awareness of cultural differences in the global and domestic workplace, heightened demand for analyzing the cross-cultural attributes in business organization, management of talent from a global perspective, emphasis on acceptable or global leadership approaches, and continuous use of virtual teams (Society for Human Resource Management 1).

That being the case, the article indicates clearly that HR professionals who want to realize their potential should be aware of these developing issues. This happens to be the case because the outlined developments or changes will definitely impact the performance of many business organizations doing business internationally.

Human resources (HR) experts who understand the importance of diversity will be able to communicate with others adequately, implement appropriate policies, and support the best practices that can support the welfare of the greatest majority in the workplace (Banerji 436). Before implementing such practices, HR managers should be aware of cultural attributes and value dimensions exhibited in the targeted organization or geographical location. HR professionals who are aware of the major cultural value dimensions will be able to come up with informed decisions and practices that can maximize performance.

Organization of the Article

The article has been organized in a professional manner. To begin with, the work explains why companies should be aware of the changes experienced in the world today. These changes are then expounded and described appropriately (Banerji 436). The author goes further to present meaningful arguments and issues that relate to cross-cultural changes. The author uses different sections to deliver the right message to the reader.

The Writer’s Style

The author has used a professional writing style to come up with the article. The arguments in the article are supported using data and information from different sources. The information is referenced using the American Psychological Association (APA) style. This professional approach makes it easier for the reader to learn a lot and consult a wide range of materials (Society for Human Resource Management 2).

The Author’s Language

The language used in this article is acceptable and relevant for a business journal article. The author has selected the right words that are meaningful to more readers. The author has used this kind of language in order to deliver the right information to the reader (Society for Human Resource Management 5). The approach is relevant and makes the article informative to more people in the world of business.

Illustrations or Charts

In order to produce a quality scholarly document, the author used a number of figures to summarize the issues and discussions. The first chart in the article gives a summary of the cultural dimension values (Adewale and Anthonia 124). The second figure outlines the major factors in cultural differences within an organization. Another chart indicates the unique cultural contingencies associated with decision-making.

Conclusion

HR managers should understand the changes in the world today. Every HR practice will not be applicable in every given situation. It would, therefore, be appropriate for HRM to analyze the cultural value dimensions, communication styles, and career expectations that define the behaviors of the targeted employees (Adewale and Anthonia 124). This knowledge will ensure evidence-based practices, strategies, and policies are put in place in the changing world. Whether doing business domestically or globally, it would be relevant for HRM to embrace the emerging cross-cultural attributes in order to empower the targeted employees and eventually improve organizational performance.

Works Cited

Adewale, Osibanjo, and Adeniji Anthonia. “Impact of Organizational Culture on Human Resource Practices: A Study of Selected Nigerian Universities.” Journal of Competitiveness, vol. 5, no. 4, 2013, pp. 115-133.

Banerji, Sanchita. “A Study of Issues & Challenges of Implementation of Information Technology in HRM.” Global Journal of Management and Business Studies, vol. 3, no. 2, 2013, pp. 435-440.

Chuang, Szu-Fang. “Essential Skills for Leadership Effectiveness in Diverse Workplace Development.” Online Journal for Workforce Education and Development, vol. 6, no. 1, 2013, pp. 1-23.

Dartey-Baah, Kwasi. “The Cultural Approach to the Management of the International Human Resource: An Analysis of Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions.” International Journal of Business Administration, vol. 4, no. 2, 2013, pp. 39-45.

Kumar, Prasanna. “Human Resource Management in Future: An Obstacle of Champion of Globalization.” Global Journal of Emerging Trends in e-Business, Marketing and Consumer Psychology, vol. 1, no. 1, 2014, pp. 49-57.

Society for Human Resource Management. “Selected Cross-Cultural Factors in Human Resource Management.” Research Quarterly, vol. 1, no. 1, 2008, pp. 1-9.