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A Tale Of Two Countries Essay

921 words - 4 pages

International and intercultural communication is very important in today’s world. In order to be able to communicate effectively, one must be aware of, understand and appreciate another culture. Cultural difference is the biggest barrier in doing business in the world market. Hofstede (1993) believes that the spread of business onto the global stage brings the issue of national and regional differences to the forefront. Hofstede measures culture in five dimensions and teaches that cooperation across cultures is essential to human survival. These five dimensions are Power distance, individualism, masculinity, uncertainty avoidance , and long term orientation. In this paper, I plan to ...view middle of the document...

The other similarity is uncertainty avoidance. This dimension deals with the way that a society deals with the fact that the future can never be known. It measures employees’ comfort with unstructured environment. The USA scored 46 while China scored 30. That means that the United States of America is fairly accepting of new ideas, innovative products and a willingness to try something new. China had a much lower score which means that they are even more open to new ideas. This could in part one of the reasons that they are so much more advanced than us. They are willing to try more things. I high score on this dimension would signify that the country has very strict laws and rules and they are not open for many new ideas and suggestions, more of a dictatorship country like Germany. This is definitely where the similarities end.
The countries differed greatly in power distance, individualism, and long-term orientation. Power distance is a literal measurement of the layers of management between an individual employee and the highest level of management. The higher the power distance dimension, the less likely the employee is to feel as though their contribution matters to the company. The United States of America scored a 40, while China scored 80. The scores of China are twice that of the USA which says that China is more centralized while the United States of America is more decentralized. Next, there is individualism. Individualism measures not the degree to which an employee measures her unique attributes, but also the degree to which she becomes integrated into the collective group. The United States of America scored a 91 on this chart while China scored 20. America is described as an “I” country and individuals are focused mostly on themselves and their immediate family. China scored very low on this chart which makes them collectivists. In a collectivist society, people belong...

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