There are many nationalities around the world and each nationality has different type of culture. The differences lead to varieties way of interactions and communications among the people, such as in business environment and social environment. So, how far do we understand about the meaning of culture? This report will define culture and explain the effects of culture on the conduct of business.
2. What is culture?.
There are a lot of definitions for culture. Culture is a tradition in human lives that has existed naturally. According to Trompenaars and Hampden-Turner (1997), culture consists of 3 layers: the outer, middle and core layers. The outer layer refers to the explicit products which include clothes, languages and buildings. The middle layer refers to norms and values, the rule about what is right and wrong, good and bad. The examples for this layer are our attitude to traditions, marriage and religion. The core layer of culture refers to our assumption about the existence which is our attitude to fellows humans, time and nature.
3. The core layer of culture.
It is the core layer of culture that affects the conduct of business. Hofstede (cited in Lustig and Koester, 1999) believes there are 4 dimensions of core cultural differences. They are Individualism-collectivism, power distance, uncertainty avoidance and masculinity-femininity. However, Lustig and Koester believe that Individualism and collectivism are the most important.
3.1 Features of individualism.
Individualism is the belief or way people's doing things individually. According to Hofstede (cited in Samovar and Porter, 2001), an individualist person will do all the things individually and more consider in achieving personal goals. In addition, Samovar and Porter (2001) state that the individualist will be more independence, they will not depend on other people. They will be more considering on private property, having individuals" opinions and decisions, emphasis on individuals" initiative and achievements.