As the International manager begins to identify differences among national cultures, he or she must be aware of past research and techniques to utilize while creating a strategy. The Dutch scholar Geert Hostede"s research offers framework for international managers to understand the management implications of broad differences in national cultures.
Hofstede breaks down categories such as power distance, uncertainty avoidance, individualism-collectivism, masculinity-femininity, and short-term-long-term orientation.
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The Hofstede’s Theories
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. It helps the international managers strategize accordingly to build a better plan to effectively produce his or her desired outcome when dealing with another culture. Hofstede believed that these theories should not be applied universally because many of the theories are ethnocentric and fail to account all cultural differences. Hofstede also indicated that American scholars, in particular, studied motivational theories but may have damaged data due to cultural differences.
International managers must realize that Hofstede"s theories are only a starting point for understanding differences in ethnic cultures. For example, an international manager who is attempting to do business with Ireland should utilize the theories Hofstede supplied, but it is only a broad view that must be supplemented by other understandings gained through direct contact, personal commitment, and genuine openness in dealing with people of a different ethic background.
Hofstede"s framework is a useful asset in analyzing and developing business with countries such as Ireland. However, the international manager should also research this culture with personal experiences to indicate whether or not the preliminary research is correct. There are so many variables that the international manager must be aware of during the research process. Any incorrect measures taken or applied haphazardly may cost the international company its reputation and future business. Cultures and individuals are constantly changing
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