Contemporary International Management Practices (Coursework Sample)
Contemporary International Management Practices
The self-evaluation and development plan will receive individual written feedback using an assessment grid three weeks after submission.
Indicative structure for the Assignment Report
Section 1 : Self Evaluation of Current Competencies Approx. 2000 words
Choose three topics/ competencies from the following
Managing across cultures (Understanding cultures/ analysing cultures and managing across cultures)
Communicating across cultures/ Cross cultural negotiation/ Working with language diversity
Cross cultural motivation / Cross cultural Leadership
Competencies in Ethical, Sustainable Management Practices
Section 2 Self Development Plan Approx 2000 words
Choose two topics
You can choose the same topics you used in section 1 or use different topics
Include a table showing the Development Plan over a six month period for each competency. Discuss the plan. This should refer back to theory/ concepts and literature to support the rationale for the planned activities and the evaluation of your development.
This should be very specific, measurable goals to be achieved, specific actions to work on the identified competencies. Refer to theory/ literature on the topic area to inform your plan.
To include diary entries
Contemporary International Management Practices
Contemporary International Management Practices
Multicultural team working, cross-cultural management and cross-cultural leadership are important competencies that leaders should possess to excel in businesses where globalization has necessitated a culturally diverse workforce. Aspiring leaders and managers should learn important theories, concepts and models that explain these competencies. For instance, Hofstede’s dimensions of culture cut across all these competencies. Having knowledge on these competencies helps in self-evaluation to determine one’s strengths and shortcomings in relation to the aforementioned competencies. As a result, one can create a self-development plan to utilise the strengths and address the limitations identified in the self-evaluation process.
Section 1: Self-Evaluation of Current Competencies
As globalisation shapes businesses today, determining the impact of culture on the relationship between employee productivity and human resource management is paramount. Hofstede’s theory on cultural values posits that cultural values will affect the degree of the relationship between individual job satisfaction and human resource management (Andreassi et al., 2014, p. 59). Social exchange theory explains how human resource practices impact on employee job attitudes, including job satisfaction, productivity, turnover and motivation. At the center of this relationship underlies cultural dimensions which are key in informing the interaction outcomes of human resource management and employee job attitudes.
Leaders should carefully examine the diverse culture of the workforce based on Hofstede’s cultural dimensions to formulate a way of interacting with every employee. For instance, individualism/collectivism is one of the Hofstede’s cultural dimensions explaining that cultures with high levels of individualism are less likely to embrace team work as they promote working independently (Andreassi et al., 2014, p. 60). On the other hand, cultures with increased levels of collectivism tend to prefer team working among co-workers. Thus, leaders should closely study different cultures to establish their individualism or collectivism.
Individualism/collectivism dimension informed the first phase of my self-evaluation. Based on the explanation of Hofstede, I undertook a self-evaluation exercise in the learning institution to determine how I support team work, especially when participating in group work tasks over one month period. Based on the analysis as summarised in Table 1 in Appendix A, my participation in up to three groups of classwork demonstrate high level of collectivism. Thus, the culture that I grew up in embraces collectivism as opposed to individualism.
People aspiring to be managers of organisations that have a good reputation globally should be wary of the higher stakes for their roles going forward. According to Mihaela (2014), globalization has led to the growth of international business which in turn has escalated demands for managing culturally diverse employees (p. 106). Having knowledge of a specific culture is an asset, and should encompass the first step in business internationalization process. Therefore, managers should understand individuals in a culturally diverse team. The understanding must entail the culture of the employees in a culturally diverse workforce. International managers must understand culture to examine superior stereotypes, establish cultural mentors and informants to assist, assess information that may be inconsistent with cultural stereotypes and learn mental strategies that will enhance effectiveness in diverse culture. Additionally, managers should require cross-cultural competences that help in business operations with interconnected and complex world of nations, civilisations, nations, groups and individuals.
Self-evaluation regarding my perception of my close friends in the institution and in the neighbourhood entailed noting the various stereotypes that my community have on their cultures. After determining the beliefs that may impact organizational performance, I observed clearly relevant behaviours and sought their views to determine credibility of such beliefs. The perceptions were significantly untrue. Therefore, the beliefs that our community has instilled in us should be further examined in managing a culturally diverse environment.
The positivist paradigm supports the manipulation of culture to meet certain objectives. According to Romani (2018), positivist paradigm in cross-cultural studies define culture as stable, separate and self-contained phenomenon encompassing distinct traits that can be manipulated, measured and observed. Culture is seen as a system of values embedded in cultural dimensions. Managers can compare national scores on these dimensions to enable management practices across countries understand and analyse management behaviour differences. Thus, international managers should be able to understand, analyse and manipulate culture in a multicultural setting to boost productivity.
Mediation within and across cultures is required of managers in organisations with culturally diverse environment. Increased importance of trust building, communication and collaboration that allows seamless flow of processes and knowledge has made mediation within and between cultures more vital for organizational performance (Brannen and Thomas, 2010). Managers should have knowledge and skills of collaboration, communication and trust building to necessitate such mediation. Thus, cross-cultural management should incorporate the aspect of mediation to harness the potential of culturally diverse workforce.
An aspiring leader should endeavour to determine the extent of the capabilities aligned to one’s culture and having an impact on human resource. The areas that a person should focus on include the interaction, communication with the juniors and mediation at any given time. In most cultures, the seniors in a community tend to ignore the input of juniors and latter’s views on anything are not sought, especially during mediation. My community and culture supports such a behavior. The current competitive market requires close interaction between the management and employees through a vertical communication platform. Therefore, as an aspiring human resource manager, ensuring that I embrace an effective communication between seniors and subordinates in the society is imperative in the success of my roles in the future.
Organisations with culturally diverse teams may encounter process gains and losses through barriers to convergence and divergence forces. According to Stahi and Maznerski (2021), information processing, similarity attraction, social categorization and social identity theories propose cultural diversity that enhances convergent and divergent processes among teams, causing process gains and losses. On the one hand, creativity is a divergent process that contributes to a process gain, positively leading to team performance. On the other hand, conflict in multicultural teams is a divergent process that establishes a process loss which decreases team performance. Some convergent processes, including mutual trust and group identity contribute to process gains and positively impact on team performance. Sadly, other convergent processes, such as compliance and conformity are barriers to effective team performance as they do not allow group thinking and dissent. Thus, self-evaluation should consider such processes in determining team performance of individuals in a culturally diverse team.
Self-evaluation of multicultural team working should also involve examining issues in multicultural teams, including communication and dimension of culture problems. Cagiltay, Bichelmeyer, and Akilli (2015) explain that cultural differences may cause barriers to effective communication among team members due to lack of prosodic characteristics and paralinguistic aspects, including stress, intonation and pitch. Also, language is one of the leading cause of issues in cross-cultural communication. The dimensions from Hofstede’s model such as power distance, individualism/collectivism and uncertainty avoidance may also help explain the capabilities of multicultural team working. Culturally diverse teams with strong uncertainty end, including risks avoidance and fear of ambiguous circumstances may not function harmoniously or in unison. Teams with members having individualistic cultures may also present poor performance while those with collectivistic cultures tend to perform exceptionally well. Thus, a human resource manager should focus on the communication and dimensions of culture problems that may affect performance of multicultural teams.
After self-evaluation, a leader should develop strategies to address inefficiencies in multicultural teams. For instance, adopting noble communication skills creates a good multicultural team (Alemu, 2016, p. 10). Iskandarova (2016) notes that multicultural teams should avoid cultural differences such as verbal and non-verbal gestures and mannerisms (p. 2). In other words, teams should embrace conversing in neutral tone and considering cultural differences when interacting to boost effective communication on culturally diverse teams. Strong leadership is also paramount in managing culturally diverse teams. Leaders should have core competencies to analyse the challenges and dynamics of multicultural teams. They should be able to predict conflicts among team membe...
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