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The Hofstede Model: Understanding a Multicultural Environment

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Cultural Confluence in Organizational Change

Part of the book series: Palgrave Studies in African Leadership ((PSAL))

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Abstract

The difference between etic and etic research is shortly explained, and the chapter sets off with a discussion on the (dis)advantages of etic research. Used in a positive way and with care, it gives us a chance to compare cultures and, in this case, is executed through the cultural dimensions of Hofstede. The different basic values of Angola, Portugal, and the USA (where most management literature originates) are compared, and they explain the situation leading up to the strike as well as provide clues as to how to proceed into the organizational change process. Fully understanding the main cultural differences between Portuguese management and Angolan frontliners concerning power distance, collectivism, and uncertainty avoidance (giving form to the so-called pyramid culture) provide a lot of understanding of the strike and the behaviour of the employees. Furthermore, these differences topped up with the cultural similarities between Angola and Portugal, in terms of a tender culture, striving for dialogue and consensus, and short-term orientation, with high respect for traditional wisdom, form interesting points of departure for the change process.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Kluckhohn and Strodbeck (1961), Smith et al. (1995, 1996), Schwartz (1994, 2006), Hall and Hall (1990), Inglehart and Baker (2000), House et al. (2004), Minkov (2007), Meyer (2014); etc. For an overview: see Minkov (2014) or Holtbrügge (2022).

  2. 2.

    Hofstede (1980a) and Hofstede et al. (2010).

  3. 3.

    Angola had not been part of the original study of Hofstede but was researched by Paulo Finuras in 2010/2011 and published in his dissertation (2013). Finuras also found a different score for Portugal on IDV, which will be discussed later.

  4. 4.

    For instance, Trompenaars (1993), Smith et al. (1996), GLOBE in: House et al. (2004), Meyer (2014), Minkov (2007–2022).

  5. 5.

    For instance, Schwartz (1994, 2011), McSweeney (2002), Kwek (2003), Triandis (1982), and Ailon (2008).

  6. 6.

    Minkov (2014, p. 220).

  7. 7.

    Williamson (2002, p. 1392).

  8. 8.

    Hofstede (2001, p. 73; 2002).

  9. 9.

    Metz (2022, p. 27).

  10. 10.

    Further emphasized by Minkov et al. (2023).

  11. 11.

    Beugelsdijk et al. (2015). See also Beugelsdijk and Welzel (2018); Blog 1 of Hofstede (2019).

  12. 12.

    See also Taras et al. (2012).

  13. 13.

    Chinese Culture Connection (1987).

  14. 14.

    Noorderhaven and Tidjani (2001).

  15. 15.

    Minkov (2014) and Holtbrügge (2022).

  16. 16.

    Minkov (2018) and Minkov and Kaasa (2022).

  17. 17.

    Kirkman et al. (2006, pp. 307–308), Smith and Bond (1999, p. 56). See also Drogendijk and Slangen (2006).

  18. 18.

    Kirkman et al. (2017, p. 3).

  19. 19.

    Hofstede (2002, p. 1358).

  20. 20.

    Hofstede (2002, p. 1359).

  21. 21.

    Smelser (1992, p. 23).

  22. 22.

    Idem, p. 24.

  23. 23.

    According to the film ‘An engineer’s odyssey,’ creating understanding was the rationale for Hofstede when he started cultural research, after growing up during World War II. See Smit and Siegmund (2014).

  24. 24.

    Smelser (1992, p. 23).

  25. 25.

    Venkateswaran and Ojha (2019, p. 426).

  26. 26.

    Idem, p. 425.

  27. 27.

    Scheinder et al. (2014, p. 18).

  28. 28.

    Ball et al. (2004).

  29. 29.

    The definitions and explanations in this paragraph can be found in Hofstede et al. (2010).

  30. 30.

    For an indication of PDI scores for more than 300 ethnic groups in Africa, see the thesis of Van Pinxteren (2018).

  31. 31.

    Gyekye (2004, pp. 67–68).

  32. 32.

    Dandala (2009, p. 267).

  33. 33.

    Reiter (2021, p. 2).

  34. 34.

    Graness (2016, p. 173).

  35. 35.

    Mbiti (1969), Menkiti (1984, 2006), Wiredu (2008, 2009), and Gyekye (1997). In: Müller (2023).

  36. 36.

    Müller (2023, p. 24).

  37. 37.

    Dandala (2009, p. 271).

  38. 38.

    Minkov and Kaasa (2022, p. 5).

  39. 39.

    Hofstede et al. (2010, p. 140).

  40. 40.

    Müller (2023, p. 13).

  41. 41.

    Gyekye (1997, p. 54). In: Müller (2023, p. 23).

  42. 42.

    Gyekye (2004, pp. 56–63).

  43. 43.

    Boubakri et al. (2016).

  44. 44.

    Noorderhaven and Tidjani (2001, p. 43).

  45. 45.

    Metz (2022, pp. 100–101).

  46. 46.

    Mbigi (2005, p. 75).

  47. 47.

    Hofstede et al. (2010, p. 140), Beugelsdijk and Welzel (2018, p. 1498).

  48. 48.

    Finuras (2013).

  49. 49.

    Minkov and Kaasa (2022, p. 12).

  50. 50.

    Although recent research by both Beugelsdijk et al. (2015) and Minkov and Kaasa (2022) suggests that the USA is slowly becoming less individualistic in relation to other countries.

  51. 51.

    Hofstede (1998, p. 11).

  52. 52.

    Finuras, in speech, 21–8–2018.

  53. 53.

    Chinese Culture Connection (1987).

  54. 54.

    Noorderhaven and Tidjani (2001).

  55. 55.

    See Minkov (2014, p. 223).

  56. 56.

    Fischer et al. (2010). In: Minkov (2014, p. 223).

  57. 57.

    Minkov (2014, p. 223).

  58. 58.

    Iguisi (1994, 2014, p. 63).

  59. 59.

    Wursten (2019).

  60. 60.

    See Dandala on manhood (2009, pp. 269–270).

  61. 61.

    Wursten (1997, p. 18).

  62. 62.

    Wursten (2019, p. 57).

  63. 63.

    Wursten (2019, p. 85).

  64. 64.

    Lanzer (2017, p. 37).

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Vonk, A., Silva, V.F. (2024). The Hofstede Model: Understanding a Multicultural Environment. In: Cultural Confluence in Organizational Change. Palgrave Studies in African Leadership. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-45403-5_4

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