18 Ağustos 2014 Pazartesi

Masculinity And Femininity Dimension Of Cultures


Geert Hofstede analyzed a large data based on employee values scores collected by IBM between 1967 and 1973 covering more than 70 countries. In the editions of his work since 2001, scores are listed for 74 countries and regions, partly based on replications and extensions of the IBM study on different international populations. The cultural dimensions of this study are presented below:[1]

·           Power Distance Index (PDI) focuses on the degree of equality, or inequality, between people in the country's society.

·           Individualism (IDV) focuses on the degree the society reinforces individual or collective achievement and interpersonal relationships. Opposite of individualism is collectivism. This means that other peoples’ ideas, values are important in the work life.

·           Masculinity (MAS) focuses on the degree the society reinforces, or does not reinforce, the traditional masculine work role model of male achievement, control, and power.

·           Uncertainty Avoidance Index (UAI) focuses on the level of tolerance for uncertainty and ambiguity within the society - i.e. unstructured situations

·           Long-Term Orientation (LTO) focuses on the degree the society embraces, or does not embrace long-term devotion to traditional, forward thinking values.
 

We will mainly focus on the masculinity dimension of the cultures. If we want to extend the definition of masculinity dimension, we can say that, a high masculinity ranking indicates the country experiences a high degree of gender differentiation. In these cultures, males dominate a significant portion of the society and power structure, with females being controlled by male domination. A low masculinity ranking indicates the country has a low level of differentiation and discrimination between genders. In these cultures, females are treated equally with males in all aspects of the society.[2] The scores of different cultures are shown in the following figure.



Masculinity Scores of Different Countries

 
When we make deeper analysis, we can clearly see that the lowest masculinity values are in the Nordic countries such as Norway and Sweden. Although we have above mentioned that in developed countries sex discrimination is not important like in the developing countries, above figure shows that as a developed country, Japan has the most masculinity value among other world states.  

 

 
Masculinity Differentiations of Different Countries from Turkey

 
The above figure depicts that many of the world countries are ahead of Turkey in the masculinity score. Plus this, some European countries such as England, Ireland Germany and Hungary have greater values than Turkey. As a result, 19 out of 55 countries’ values are smaller than Turkey’s value and show more feminine characteristics than Turkey. 

After this analysis we can state the main differences between the feminine and masculine societies. This analysis is shown in the below table.

Difference between Feminine and Masculine Societies

Feminine
Masculine
Dominant values in society are caring for others and preservation
Dominant values in society are material success and progress
People and warm relationships are important
Money and things are important
Everybody is supposed to be modest
Men are supposed to be assertive, ambitious, and tough
In the family, both fathers and
mothers deal with facts and feelings
In the family, fathers deal with
facts and mothers with feelings
Both boys and girls are allowed to cry but neither should fight
Girls cry, boys don't; boys should fight back when attacked.
Sympathy for the weak
Sympathy for the strong
Average student is the norm
Best student is the norm
Failing in school is a minor accident
Failing in school is a disaster
Friendliness in teachers appreciated
Brilliance in teachers appreciated
Boys and girls study same subjects
Boys and girls study different subjects
Work in order to live
Live in order to work
Managers use intuition and strive for consensus
Managers expected to be decisive and assertive
Stress on equality, solidarity, and quality of work life
Stress on equity, competition among colleagues, and performance
Resolution of conflicts by compromise and negotiation
Resolution of conflicts by fighting them out
Welfare society ideal
Performance society ideal
The needy should be helped
The strong should be supported
Permissive society
Corrective society
Small and slow are beautiful  
Big and fast are beautiful
Preservation of the environment should have highest priority
Maintenance of economic growth should have highest priority
Government spends relatively large proportion of budget on development assistance to poor countries
Government spends relatively small proportion of budget on development assistance to poor countries
Government spends relatively small proportion of budget on armaments
Government spends relatively large proportion of budget on armaments
International conflicts should be resolved by negotiation and compromise
International conflicts should be resolved by a show of strength or by fighting
A relatively large number of women in elected political positions
A relatively small number of women in elected political positions
Dominant religions stress the complementarity of the sexes
Dominant religions stress the male prerogative

Source: Geert Hofstede, Masculinity and Femininity, First Ed., USA: Sage, 1998, p. 17.

After the detailed information about the masculinity and femininity, we must define their role in the business life. The countries which are showing masculine characteristics have the following properties of business organizations:[3]

·           Job Centeredness: Centrality of work and career, emphasis on visible achievements and desire for tangible expressions of success.

·           Performance Centeredness: Challenge, excellence and competition between the individuals.

·           Results Orientation: Initiative taking, decisiveness of the leaders and the efficiency of the work is important.

 
In masculine countries’ organizations, the similar characteristics are shown below:[4]

·           There is a strong occupational segregation. Some works are for only men and some works are for only women. For example, women are not supposed to be a taxi driver.

·           Men are breadwinners but women are housewives.

·           They can both follow different type of higher education

·           Belief in inequality of sexes.

·           Stronger position of the father in the family.


In contrast, the countries which are showing feminine characteristics have the following properties of business organizations:[5]

·           Employee Centeredness: Centrality of personal and family life, emphasize on mutual help and social interaction, and desire for fulfillment and belonging.

·           Relationship Centeredness: Quality of Human Relationships and work environment, location, competence and collaboration.

·            People Orientation: Solidarity, empathy and consensus are showing the orientation to the individuals.


In feminine countries’ organizations, the similar characteristics are shown below:[6]

·           There is less occupational segregation.

·           Men and women can be both breadwinners.

·           They can both follow same type of higher education.

·           Belief in equality of sexes.

·           Stronger position of the mother in the family.



[1] Geert Hofstede, “Cultural Dimensions,” http://www.geert-hofstede.com/, 29 April 2006.
[2] International Business, Etiquette and Manners, “Geert Hofstede  Analysis”, http://international-business-etiquette.com/besite/hofstede.htm, 29 April 2006.
[3] Hofstede, p. 42.
[4] Hofstede, p. 48.
[5] Hofstede, p. 42.
[6] Hofstede, p. 48.

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