Due to increasing globalization process and the development of economic interdependence between nations, national culture has become critical for contemporary business operations (Ang, and Van Dyne, 2015). The following essay is prepared with an objective to gain a useful insight into the impact of a national culture on an organization’s operations. For the purpose, the meaning and scope of national culture and organizational culture have been explained in the essay. A critical evaluation has been conducted to determine the factors or aspects which are responsible for making an organization a big success or a failure in a country.
In the words of Hofstede, and Bond, (1984), National culture refers to the shared beliefs and values that allows the members to understand their norms and roles in a country. It can also be defined as a usual pattern of attitude based on the knowledge and values that develop in a country over time. A national culture also comprises of implicit or explicit patterns.
Transmitted symbols, and acquired behaviors, which make the characteristic achievement group of people. Wiengarten et al. (2015) has found that the core of a national culture includes traditional values and ideas that can be seen as a product of an action. Because diverse cultures are there in the world, every organization must develop the knowledge of the national culture where it operates in order to effectively perform global business. If the international organizations do not understand the culture of their nation, the business operations can be badly affected. According to Helmreich, and Merritt, (2017), a national culture is a collective set of thoughts that distinguish one category or group of people from others. According to Beugelsdijk et al. (2015), organizational culture refers to a mix of attributes such as risk taking, team working, customer operations, innovation, and orientation to market responsiveness. An organizational culture has a proper structure of power along with control over workflows. A balanced culture in an organization provides it with a range of values and viewpoints which allows it to respond effectively to diverse situations and ever changing customer needs. A recent study conducted by Ang, and Van Dyne, (2015) showed that the types of culture which are completely opposite from each other do not compete but try to work together. In this view, it is essential for the organizations to build a culture that can have a room for all types of cultures. However, Hofstede, and Bond, (1984) has argued that only those organizations can achieve success which have an ability to manage these conflicting types of cultures while establishing a shared culture that can meet the needs of everyone. In addition to this, a balanced organizational culture indicates that organizations are more receptive to their external environments, particularly to the sudden changes, if they possess an ability to run in changing conditions. Helmreich, and Merritt, (2017)has stated that a national culture always remains stable, representing the basic values while an organizational culture consists of practices that are shared by the members, and as a result it is quite easy to change and manage an organizational culture. In contrast to this, Marouf, (2016) has found that managers in an organization who belong from different nationalities try to change the prevailing cultural patterns for creating particular cultural practices that align with their established culture. It shows that people with cultural differences try to analyze and respond to the organizational issue in different ways according to their own interpretation. However, sometimes this difference shows that such organizational people avoid, change, or bend some procedures and rules of an organization. This creates clashes and adverse impact when they are analyzed as per the original cultural norms. In an evaluation of organizations in a private sector of UK, Gunkel et al. (2015) has found a significant relationship among the dimensions of national culture and market culture particularly in medium sized companies. On the other hand, national culture was found to be linked with the hierarchical culture in the large sized organizations. In the opinion of Eisend et al. (2016), the national culture of a country is the foremost factor that affects the culture, operations, and strategies of an organization, where they operate. In terms of workplace characteristics also, the operations of an organization are influenced through several dimensions in a number of ways. For instance, Hofstede, and Bond, (1984) has founded that organizations have bureaucratic, tall, and centralized organizational culture in a high power distance national culture, where employees are expected to carry out their tasks as per the guidance provided by their leaders. On the other hand, organizations are have a horizontal and highly flexible organizational structure in low power distance country culture where employee participation is highly encouraged in decision making. Song et al. (2018) has found that national culture having a high level of masculinity shows favoritism in gender roles because only few women are seen at higher positions of job, and talent is not given the top priority. On the other hand, in a low masculinity or feminine culture, gender discrimination is highly minimized because social values are given priority, and women are provided equal access to the higher positions. Nations having high level of individualism give importance to the work, and new ideas are invited from all employees. On the other hand, low individualism give more importance to relationships over work. Beugelsdijk et al. (2015) has analyzed that in a national culture having uncertainty avoidance, the organizations are encouraged to take risks in order to take their work to next level. In oppose of this, in a low uncertainty avoidance culture, employees of an organization are encouraged to become creative, innovative, and risk player with laws and rules to apply. The national culture of a country is highly powerful in affecting the business operations of a company. The components that are responsible for creation of a culture of a particular country covers the past of that country, and the physical environment. Wiengarten et al. (2015) have observed a number of institutions which help in the establishment of the national culture such as religion, family, education, mass communication media, and the multinational business. According to Adedeji et al. (2017), every national culture cause a great impact on organizations in positive as well as negative manner, on the basis of the business cycle, specific business, along with the specific means to pursue. In addition to this, the cultural dynamics has the ability to either boost up or spoil the business operations. Therefore, it becomes necessary that the senior management of a company identifies the cultural aspects which can negatively affect the organizational performance, and those which can increase the performance. In order to implement this, Helmreich, and Merritt, (2017) has suggested that an organization should attempt to recognize and interpret the strategic problems. It involves gathering and interpreting the information for finding out the strategic aspects. In the process, the organization selects, scans, interprets, and confirm the information to create priorities among different problems. In a research carried out by Lee, and Kramer, (2016), it was found that national culture of a country could strongly affect this process, along with the nature of bonding of an organization with the external environment as well as employees of the organization. The strategic aspects that are acknowledged are prioritized according to the criteria applicable to the organization. When an organization expands to the new countries, its survival and profitability are thus, significantly influenced by the national culture of that country. On the basis of the above essay, it is concluded that the acceptance and knowledge of the national culture along with its values, attitudes, beliefs, and forms of behavior is the most important factor for the success of any organization on the present dynamic business environment. In today’s diversified and globalized world, many organizations fail to identify the boundaries between the nations, and expect the modern managers to hold and make use of different types of competitive advantages that the contemporary environment offers. It was also found from the essay that cultural differences are stable and continual, however, they signify a number of challenges mainly for the multinational organizations. It was also analyzed from the discussion that the firms that are able to manage adaptation in an effective manner are able to gain advantages in the diverse cultures where they run while increasing their key sources of advantage throughout the borders, and even making cultural diversity itself a means of advantage in some cases (Lee, and Kramer, 2016). Although, it emphasizes national cultural differences, which are often not appreciated, it become very important for the organizations to take care of cultural similarities as well. Therefore, national culture and its diversity act both as an asset as well as a liability. Managers should try to align cultural aspects with the objectives of business in order to reach desired goals and results.