Articles

Introducing the Six Levels of Culture
{Excerpt} The essence of cultural competence, as TMC defines it, is the ability to purposely reduce risk, enhance innovation, and maximize opportunities through both cultural differences and similarities. The perspective that cultural competence becomes indispensible when external conditions change lends TMC’s approach particular relevance when tackling a range of risks, opportunities, and challenges related to change, efficiency, and innovation{Excerpt} View Article>>

National / Societal Culture
{Excerpt} The value of referring to national/societal culture is notable because there often are core values that foreigners will find safer to assume while preparing to enter an unfamiliar business culture. For example, a foreigner seeking to outsource a business process to China may find himself or herself encountering guanxi, or “relationships,” and mianzi, or “face.” According to TMC’s China expert Marco Chan in TMC’s podcast on national/societal culture, guanxi is similar to the concept of networking, and in China, it is largely based on reciprocity. Mianzi defines one’s social standing and has a quantitative value: it can be lost, gained, earned, or taken away. {Excerpt} View Article>>

Beyond Categorization: Addressing Social Identity as Culture and Context
{Excerpt} When we are asked to describe “who we are,” we often cannot help but include social and cultural categories. Of course, we seldom think about the categories themselves and instead simply list the attributes that we believe define us as individuals, our identity. I might list the following characteristics or social groups: introvert, patient, critical, only child, conscientious objector, father, husband, son, German, immigrant, white, middle class, on the boundary of the boomer and X generation, male, no fan of soccer, fan of the color purple, etc. Some of these labels refer to my social identity, i.e., my belonging to and membership in specific groups. {Excerpt} View Article>>

The Organizational Level of Culture
{Excerpt} The organizational level of analysis yields more than information about characteristics and circumstances than the national and identity group levels can hope to achieve. Organizational culture serves as a lens that enables proactive and strategic evolution and adaptation of an organization in the face of competitive challenges. The boundaries of an organization can and should be understood and mapped in cultural terms to reduce inherent risks and to maximize opportunities. {Excerpt} View Article>>

The Functional Level of Culture
{Excerpt} Understanding culture at the functional level of analysis is of special importance since key performance objectives rely on effective cross-functional collaboration. Achieving higher levels of responsiveness, efficiency, and innovation depends increasingly on “groups of people with a clear purpose representing a variety of functions or disciplines in the organization whose combined efforts are necessary for achieving the [its] purpose” (Parker 1994). {Excerpt} View Article>>

Accelerating Global Leadership
{Excerpt} Two critical contributions have recently augmented our understanding of leadership: (1) the primal nature of emotional and social intelligence as a critical underpinning of leadership effectiveness, and (2) the identification of the universal and culturally conditioned or “contingent” leadership characteristics. Together, they create a powerful concept of global leadership and its distinguishing attributes. This article outlines this conceptual synergy and illustrates how the Cultural Orientations Approach™ provides a practical basis of accelerating the development of global leadership capabilities {Excerpt} View Article>>

What Diversity & Inclusion is Really about?
{Excerpt} In simple terms, diversity refers to variance and variability from a cultural norm. In organizational terms, diversity refers to employees who do not confirm to what is expected, reinforced, and rewarded as “successful and desirable” by the organization culture. Inclusion, on the other hand, refers to a condition which allows this variance and variability to exist and flourish. {Excerpt} View Article>>