PDF6.76 MB - Wyższa Szkoła Komunikacji i Zarządzania

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PDF6.76 MB - Wyższa Szkoła Komunikacji i Zarządzania

Culture’s recent consequences 13based on answers to questions about values. The answers were provided by carefullymatched samples of people from (at first) 40 countries. The results showedthat the diversity of values among countries follows a pattern consisting of 5 basicproblems which each society resolves in its own way (also identified by Americananthropologists): inequality, relationship with others, emotional gender roles,need for security, and time horizon between future and past. In my research theseproblems translated into five dimensions. Inequality was related to power distance,(large or small), need for security was thought of as uncertainty avoidance (strongor weak), relationship with others was associated with two poles individualism orcollectivism, the emotional gender roles with another two poles masculinity or femininity,and the time horizon with long- or short-term orientation.Initially, the data were drawn from questionnaires distributed among employeesof IBM subsidiaries in 40 countries around 1970. It appeared that that differencesbetween countries in values were extremely stable and they were independent of professions,i.e. surveys conducted among engineers, secretaries, managers as well asoperators produced the same ranking of countries on certain questions. Since thenother scholars have replicated the same approach using very similar questions in socalledmajor replications (with at least 14 countries, with some studies involving asmany as 30 countries) and also in a smaller-scale ones (with 2-3 countries). One ofthe tested groups consisted of airline pilots, where more than a half of all commercialairline pilots in the world in the early 1990s participated in the research. Theyalso replicated the differences which have been found among the IBM employees.As it transpires from the data, there is something common to being Japanese orKorean, or American, or French or Polish which was exhibited both by the airlinepilots and by the employees of a multinational company, later also it has also beenfound in a group of consumers and (in a recent study) in civil servants. This shouldnot be taken to mean that the cultures have not shifted at all, it means that theyhave shifted under global influences so that a relative position of the countries remainedthe same. For example, all Europeans have become more individualist butstill some countries have become more individualist than others. Naturally, only thecomparison could be measured as culture cannot be measured in an absolute sense.I will now discuss the dimensions in greater detail.The dimension of power distance defines inequality from the bottom up.Although there is a natural tendency to blame leaders for inequality in a country,the inequality can only survive when it is perpetuated by the followers who arevoluntarily submitting themselves to the leaders. It is transferred within families,to children by parents and other elders.Another dimension, uncertainty avoidance, is independent of power distance.It is the extent to which the members of a culture feel threatened by ambiguousand unknown situations. Care should be taken not to confuse uncertainty avoidancewith risk avoidance; risk is to uncertainty as fear is to anxiety. Uncertainty

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