japan spotlite

Project Description:

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in the international spotlight: japan

questions & suggested answers

1. based on their home country, how might the organizational cultures of the four companies mentioned be distinct from one another, and in what ways could they be the same?

answer: organizational culture can be defined as the shared values and beliefs that enable members to understand their roles and the norms of the organization. zara is a spanish based company and in spain a contract is viewed as a long-lasting relationship and trust is developed on the basis of frequent and warm interpersonal contact and transaction. in spain, social competence is very important. spain migrates towards the family culture with some incubator culture qualities. however, in france, intellectual competence is very important. a contract is viewed as a well-reasoned transaction and trust emerges slowly and is based on the evaluation of perceived status and intellect. france would be considered to be in the eiffel tower culture or role-oriented culture, but also has qualities of the family culture. the united states tends to migrate more towards the guided missile culture, and sweden migrates more towards the incubator culture.

2. if the first two companies and the last two companies want to form joint ventures (zara with h&m, and louis vuitton with tiffany & co.), what could be some potential ways the organizational cultures interact?

answer: according to hofstede’s research, the national cultural values of employees have a significant impact on their organizational performance, and cultural values employees bring to the workplace with them are not easily changed by the organization. zara and h&m both have people-oriented cultures; however, spain tends to be more hierarchical structured, whereas sweden seems to be structured more on equity. louis vuitton and tiffany & co. both emphasize the task at hand. however, france is more role-oriented and the u.s. is more project-oriented.



3. what types of problems might the culturally diverse top-management team at headquarters create for the joint venture? give some specific examples. how could these problems be overcome?

answer: there are a number of possible problems for the joint venture. one is that each has a different attitude towards authority. the japanese ascribe status to parent figures; the americans give it based on the contribution of the individual to the project. another is the ways in which each group thinks and learns. the japanese tend to be intuitive and error-correcting; and the americans are problem-centered and practical. each of these approaches can result in problems because each party to the joint venture is accustomed to doing things a different way.

4. how could work structures and schedules of these companies at their respective headquarters affect operations in japan? in what ways are they different or similar?

answer: according to research performed by hofstede and supported by laurent, when employees work for a multinational corporation, it appears that germans become more german, americans become more american, and swedes become more swedish. this could affect operations in japan because of cultural differences. when working for a multinational corporation, people need to adapt to the differences. some differences in culture will cause coordination problems. the wall street journal reported that “swedes take off the entire month of july for vacation, virtually en masse, and italians take off august.”
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Price Type: Fixed

Project Budget: $17 to $18
Completed
Total Proposals: 1
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