How Much Sleaze Is Too Much? Putting Cultural Theory Into Practice.

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How much sleaze is too much? Putting cultural theory into practice.

Since the world entered the new century globalization of all aspects of people’s lives has increased. More and more companies have been transformed into MNEs. According to Rugman and Collinson (2009) the number of employees working across borders nearly tripled over the last 20 years, exposing managers to various socio-cultural and ethical issues. Geert Hofstede argues that “culture is more often a source of conflict than of synergy. Cultural differences are a nuisance at best and often a disaster” (cited in The Economist, 2008, para.4).
I used an article by Asbjorn Osland ‘How much sleaze is too much’ as a real life scenario while examining the cultural frameworks.
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This suggests that a different management ought to be applied because the likeliness of cultural/ethical issues is very high. In addition, many researchers (Nwabuzor, 2005; Olaya, 2006 cited in Baughn et a.l, 2009) indicate that bribery is more apparent in developing economies, such as Senegal, where legal system has not been fully established, leaving gaps for illegal activity. Moreover, low-income societies are more likely to perceive bribery as “a necessary means of supplementing low income” (Baughn et al., 2009, p. 16). Unlike the US, Senegal scores very low in the IDV variable, suggesting that they are a highly collectivistic society. Hofested (1999) emphasises that high power distance societies often present a paternalistic approach, in which loyalty and favours are perceived as a norm. Moreover, a paternalistic approach is correlated with collectivistic societies, in which the power of group and a group’s interest is more important that written laws. Hence, individuals will make decisions that will not necessarily be socially acceptable but will benefit the group (cited in Baughn et al., 2009).

These findings suggest that an American company should not assume that it can adapt an ethnocentric approach and operate in a foreign country by its own rules. As shown in the case study and research, complexity of culture and other economic and social factors have a strong impact
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