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Human Resource Management International HR. Stages of International Involvement. Stage 1 Markets are exclusively domestic Stage 2 Markets expanded to foreign countries, but production remains domestic Stage 3 Some operations moved out of home country

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stages of international involvement
Stages of International Involvement
  • Stage 1 Markets are exclusively domestic
  • Stage 2 Markets expanded to foreign countries, but production remains domestic
  • Stage 3 Some operations moved out of home country
  • Stage 4 Firm in a multinational corporation (MNC) where assembly/production is in several countries
  • Stage 5 Transnational corporations where control is diffuse with little allegiance to any one country
locals vs expatriates
Locals vs. Expatriates
  • Pluses and minuses of locals
  • Pluses and minuses of expatriates
expatriate assignments
Expatriate Assignments
  • Problems
    • U.S. failure rate 20 – 40%
      • 3 to 4 times higher than Europeans or Asians
    • (In 2006 failures cost $170,000 to $360,000 each - Total of over $4 billion)
      • Career Blockage
      • Culture Shock
      • Lack of Pre-departure Cross-cultural Training
      • Overemphasis on Technical Skills
      • Family Problems
expatriate assignments1
Expatriate Assignments
  • Problems
    • Difficulties upon Return
      • Lack of respect
      • Loss of status – status reversal
      • Reverse culture shock
levels of culture
Levels of Culture
  • Manifest
  • Expressed values
  • Basic assumptions
  • Kluckhohn & Strodtbeck- Variation in Values Orientation
  • Bigoness & Blakely’s Dimensions
  • Hofstede’s Dimensions
  • Hall’s Culture Context
  • Trompenaars’ Seven Dimensions
kluckhohn strodtbeck
Kluckhohn & Strodtbeck

Values orientation Variations

Relation to nature Subjugation Harmony Mastery

Time orientation Past Present Future

Basic human nature Evil Neutral/Mixed Good

Activity orientation Being Containing/ Doing


Relationships among Individualistic Group Hierarchical


Space orientation Private Mixed Public

bigoness blakely
Bigoness & Blakely

Pleasantness Good Citizen Competent Good Thinker

(Cheerful,loving, (Responsible, (Capable, (Imaginative,

helpful) polite, obedient) courageous) intellectual)

Australia (n=36) 12.7 10.9 5.6 8.3

Brazil (n=30) 11.7 10.1* 4.7* 6.8*

Denmark (n=37) 11.9 11.5 5.2 8.6

France (n=32) 13.1* 11.3 5.6 7.8

Great Britain

(n=89) 12.5 11.7 6.2 7.7

Germany (n=106) 13.0* 10.8 5.5 8.0

Italy (n=31) 12.2 11.7 5.2 6.7*

Japan (n=20) 10.0* 9.8* 6.2 7.5

Holland (n=31) 12.2 11.8 5.4 7.5

Norway (n=46) 11.5 11.4 5.2 8.0

Sweden (n=69) 12.8 12.0 4.5* 8.1

USA (n=42) 12.1 11.5 6.7* 7.7

Overall 12.3 11.3 5.6 7.9

Hofstede’s Dimensions of Cultural Differences:
  • Individualism versus collectivism
  • -concern for self vs. others
  • Power distance
    • -acceptance of unequal power distribution
  • Uncertainty avoidance
    • -preference for structure
  • Materialism versus concern for others (Masculinity/Femininity)
    • -tough vs. tender
  • Long-run versus short-run orientation (Bond)
    • -future vs. past/present
























Power Distance

hofstede dimension scores for 10 countries
Hofstede Dimension Scores for 10 Countries


USA 40L 91H 62H 46L 29L

Germany 35L 67H 66H 65M 31M

Japan 54M 46M 95H 92H 80H

France 68H 71H 43M 86H 30L

Netherlands 38L 80H 14L 53M 44M

Hong Kong 68H 25L 57H 29L 96H

Indonesia 78H 14L 46M 48L 25L

West Africa 77H 20L 46M 54M 16L

Russia 95H 50M 40L 90H 10L

China 80H 20L 50M 60M 118H

PD – H = accepts unequal power

IC – H = individualistic

MF – H = masculine

UA – H = avoid uncertainty

LT – H = long-term orientation

From Hostede, 1993

Academy of Management Executive

what can be done
What Can Be Done?
  • Reward Practices-
    • Hi Power Distance vs Low Power Distance
    • Collectivistic vs Individualistic
    • Hi Uncertainty Avoidance vs Hi Ambiguity
    • Hi Masculinity vs. Hi Femininity
    • Long-term vs. short-term orientation
  • Staffing/Appraisal Practices
    • Hi Power Distance vs Low Power Distance
    • Collectivistic vs Individualistic
    • Hi Uncertainty Avoidance vs Hi Ambiguity
    • Hi Masculinity vs. Hi Femininity
    • Long-term vs. short-term orientation
hall s culture context
Hall’s Culture Context
  • High-context
    • China, Egypt, France, Italy
  • Low-context
    • Australia, Canada, England, United States
culturally based differences in management style stereotypes

United StatesEmotional,egalitarians

ChinaLow-profile,tough negotiators

GermanyTechnically expert,authoritarians


JapanFormal,consensus seekers

Culturally Based Differences in Management Style: Stereotypes
multicultural managers and organizations
Multicultural Managers and Organizations
  • The Multicultural Manager
    • Has the skills and attitudes to relate effectively to and motivate people across race, gender, age, social attitudes, and lifestyles. Respects and values the cultural differences.
    • Has the ability (e.g., is bilingual) to conduct business in a diverse, international environment.
    • Has a cultural sensitivity in being aware and interested in why people of other culture act as they do.
    • Is not parochial in assuming that the ways of one’s culture are the only ways things should be done.
    • Is not ethnocentric in assuming that the superiority of one’s culture over that of another culture.
protocol do s and don t s in several countries
Protocol Do’s and Don’t’s in Several Countries

Great Britain

DO say please and thank you often.

DO arrive promptly.

DON’T ask personal questions because the British protect their privacy.

DON’T gossip about British royalty


DO shake hands when greeting. Only close friends give light, brushing kisses on cheeks.

DO dress more formally than in the United States. Elegant dress is highly valued.


DON’T expect to complete any work during the French two hour lunch

DON’T chew gum in a work setting.


DO write business correspondence in Italian for priority attention.

DO make appointments between 10:00 and 11:00 or after 3:00.

DON’T eat too much pasta, as it is not the main course.

DON’T hand

out business cards too freely. Italians use them infrequently.

protocol do s and don t s in several countries1
Protocol Do’s and Don’t’s in Several Countries


DO distribute business cards freely so people will know how to spell your name.

DO be prompt even if your hosts are not.

DON’T expect to meet deadlines. A project takes as long as the

Greeks think is


DON’T address people by formal or professional titles. The Greeks want more informality.


DO present your business cards with both hands and a slight bow as a gesture of


DO present gifts, American


made and wrapped


DON’T knock competitors.

DON’T present the same gift to everyone, unless all members are the same organizational


improving the expatriate assignment
Improving the Expatriate Assignment
  • Emphasize cultural sensitivity in selection and include spouse in assessment
  • Conduct cross-cultural training with more for longer assignments
  • Position international assignments as career enhancing
  • Use compensation as an incentive
most expensive cities
Most Expensive Cities

1 Tokyo Japan 152

2 Osaka Kobe Japan 145

3 Paris France 132

4 Copenhagen Denmark 124

5 Oslo Norway 123

6 Zurich Switzerland 122

7 Frankfurt Germany 118

8 Helsinki Finland 115

9 Geneva Switzerland 115

10 Singapore Singapore 112

11 Hong Kong Hong Kong 110

12 Vienna Austria 109

13 Dublin Ireland 108

14 New York United States 100

15 Morgantown United States 56

eeo in the international context
EEO in the International Context
  • EEO prohibition of discrimination based on age, sex, race, etc. apply to international assignments too
  • Foreign national employees of U.S. companies working outside the US are not covered by U.S. employment law
  • Immigration and Control Act (1986)
    • Non-U.S. citizens living and working in the U.S.
    • May not be discriminated against
other international hr considerations
Other International HR Considerations
  • Ethics and Social Responsibility
    • Many ethical dilemmas face expatriates
    • Ethical and legal are not the sameForeign Corrupt Practices Act (1977)
  • Political Risk
    • Possibility that social or government pressures negatively impact operations
    • Expatriates often caught in middle
      • Should understand political situation