High Context cultures
They use a lot more context in
Less verbally explicit communication and
rely on context cues like body language.
More indirect and tend to avoid disharmony
Japan, Asia, Middle East, South America are
examples of high context cultures.
Low context cultures
More direct, value independence and
tend to use a lot of written and explicit
Customary to end discussions with a
written agreement or contract.
Eg. North America, Great Britain, German
speaking countries, Scandinavian
countries tend to be low context.
This dimension deals with the fact that
all individuals in societies are not equal
– it expresses the attitude of the culture
towards these inequalities amongst us.
Power distance is defined as the extent
to which the less powerful members of
institutions and organisations within a
country expect and accept that power is
The fundamental issue addressed by this
dimension is the degree of
interdependence a society maintains
among its members. It has to do with
whether people´s self-image is defined in
terms of “I” or “We”.
In Individualist societies people are
supposed to look after themselves and
their direct family only.
In Collectivist societies people belong to „in
groups‟ that take care of them in exchange
For a collectivist, to be rejected by one‟s peers
or to be thought lowly of by one‟s extended and
immediate in-groups, leaves him or her
rudderless and with a sense of intense
The employer/employee relationship is one of
expectations based on expectations – Loyalty
by the employee and almost familial protection
by the Employer. Hiring and promotion
decisions are often made based on
relationships which are the key to everything in
a Collectivist society.
Masculinity / Feminity
A high score (masculine) on this dimension
indicates that the society will be driven by
competition, achievement and success, with
success being defined by the winner / best in
field – a value system that starts in school and
continues throughout organisational behaviour.
A low score (feminine) on the dimension
means that the dominant values in society are
caring for others and quality of life.
A feminine society is one where quality of life is the
sign of success and standing out from the crowd is
not admirable. The fundamental issue here is what
motivates people, wanting to be the best (masculine)
The dimension Uncertainty Avoidance
has to do with the way that a society
deals with the fact that the future can
never be known: should we try to control
the future or just let it happen?
This ambiguity brings with it anxiety
and different cultures have learnt to
deal with this anxiety in different ways.
The extent to which the members of a culture feel
threatened by ambiguous or unknown situations
and have created beliefs and institutions that try
Rules are often in place just to be
circumvented and one relies on
innovative methods to “bypass the
A word used often is “adjust” and means
a wide range of things. It is this attitude
that is both the cause of misery as well
as the most empowering aspect of the
country. There is a saying that “nothing
Long term orientation
The long term orientation dimension is
closely related to the teachings of
Confucius and can be interpreted as
dealing with society‟s search for virtue,
the extent to which a society shows a
pragmatic future-oriented perspective rather
than a conventional historical short-term
point of view.
India USA UK Japan China South
PDI 77 40 35 54 80 60 95
IDV 48 91 89 46 20 18 25
MAS 56 62 66 95 66 39 60
UAI 40 46 35 92 30 85 80
LTO 61 29 25 80 118 75
Who will be take
actions and results.
Will consumers be
willing to try a new
product? Who will try
the new product? What
is the process of
Power distance How will
with Managers and
In a B2B sales situation,
will a subordinate be
willing to approach their
manager with a new
Application of Hofstede's Dimensions in
Masculinity How do the
to be spoken too?
What happens if you
are too brash!
How are purchase
decisions made? Are they
made quickly and
assertively or only after a
period of thought?
How will employees
deal with change?
Will they willingly
How willing are
consumers to accept a
new product? Are they
happy with the old product
and not likely to change?
Or will the
Are consumer willing to
pay more for a product
they perceive to be
superior and will last
longer? Or do they want