Cultural Difference, International Business, Cultural Bias


Business | International Business


This article discusses Geert Hofstede's work on national cultural differences. It explains how Hofstede's model of the dimensions of national culture might be of use to performance improvement professionals as they try to solve familiar, and perhaps not so familiar, problems in international settings. Hofstede's work, first published in 1980, argues that many management theories, such as those of Herzberr, Mausner, and Snyderman (1959), Maslow (1970), and McGregor (1960), are not valid worldwide be cause the authors are subject to cultural bias that is manifested in their own cultural makeup. Hofstede's research has shown that national cultures tend vary on four dimensions: uncertainty avoidance, masculinity, power distance, and individualism. Understanding national cultural differences is important to organizations to expand beyond their own national boundaries and to attempt to win the loyalty and business of customers around the globe.

Original Citation

Sanchez, C., Curtis, D. M. (2000). Different minds and common problems: Geert Hofstede's research on national cultures. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 13(2), 9-19.