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03Dec

MMH352 International HR Management Essay

Existing Working Conditions in China and United States of America

this shows the workforce to show comparison of working conditions in china and USAWorking Conditions

According to Eurofound (European Foundation for the improvement of Living and Working Conditions) which is tripartite European Union Agency which is established for providing information, expertise and advice on working and conditions of living, industrial relations and also for managing change in Europe. Therefore, working conditions are being defined by it as conditions in ands under which sort of work is to be performed concerning work environment and place, time and work organisation as well. They intend involving labour law subject matter and it is regulated with the aid of various sources as collective agreements, legislation, rules of working, employment contract, etc. As concept has moved towards additional factors incorporation and those parameters which lay emphasis on psychosomatically of employee as economic effect on living conditions and role of employees socially being female employment.

In other way working conditions could be effectively described as working conditions which ought to cover wide range of issues involving rest periods, working hours, work schedules, remuneration, physical conditions and demands mentally that exist in workplace (ILO, 2015).

Working Conditions in China and United States of America

Every organisation is having its own way to do business work and meet its objectives as well and these are dependent on certain rules of working in particular country or state and accordingly employee work in that country. With the starting edge of globalization has not only involved in bringing countries close, but it has also involved in creation of unified ethical concern for certain countries having business with each other. Ethics are becoming problem for each and every country particularly but one has to take care of the challenges which are brought about with aid of both culture and language change which would be global scale.

Working Conditions in China

Labor standards and rights of workers have improved in China with the aid of development of the law concerning Labor Contract Law. This law is helpful in protecting long term employees in concern with protection of them for being fired from work without any reason. It is the requirement that companies tend to contribute to social security accounts and are having enhanced safety of employees with the help of making improvements in working condition regulation. This latest law helps in protecting children of China with regulations on child labor. Largest challenge is to assure that China is adapting these new regulations and laws (Business Ethics in the Chinese Context, 2008).  In 2007, China had to face a threat from recall of products. Therefore, China had to lay emphasis on how they could improve safety of products, ethics related problem and advertising.

Business patterns and culture are always linked with each other as an individual is involved in creating environment at work place which is close to atmosphere where that individual has grown in his life. To work in an international organisation which is working in foreign country, it is necessary to follow its own cultural values which are national or to decide following values of host country or for the ones which are acceptable internationally.

Organisation Culture at China

China is a country which is sustaining in complex cultures and traditions in society of business, where workers are involved in considering immoral from deviating from their own roots, problem becomes worse. Chinese organisation culture is therefore rooted to state culture (ZhouSivunen Pei, 2005). Therefore, those firms which are international are thinking of investing in China have to assure that their human resource management and working environment are confirm with national culture.

Most vital aspect of Chinese culture is that they are having high collectivism and distance in power and majority of Chinese leaders are having higher distance in power and they tend to rely on those who they know or are close with. They are reluctant in providing power in their group or party and it is not easy for subordinates for gaining higher level of trust from their leaders. Chinese are reasonably low in uncertainty avoidance and this means that they are not at all worried by ambiguity and uncertainty. Chinese are well recognized because of their stress on hard work and for an attitude which is explained as Confucian dynamism with aid of Bond (Chinese Culture Connection, 1987).

Business Culture in United States of America

United States of America is having working environment which is professional and is casual as well. Americans tend to various kinds of job, office and environment of work and the work culture is going to be different across different industries and in different areas of the country. In addition to this different companies in similar industry and in similar areas would vary in office and in business culture environment (Kochan et al., 1986).

Dress code and working environment in USA is different and employees are having preference of being dressed in casual manner until policy of company is stating for the same. It is basically practiced in USA only that some of its people are working in employer office as employees, while various other are working as consultant at office of client.  Shaking hand is readily accepted in every business situation and some of the Americans do not favour to shake hand at those events which are social, either they are involved in greeting by a casual hello.

Corporate Culture of Americans

Americans tend to make exchanges concerning their business cards in casual manner as it is for purpose of having future information and there is no such ritual of exchanging business cards. Therefore, Americans prefer directness and straight forwardness as well. So they really mean what they are actually saying. On the other hand silence is avoided in meetings, being it business or social. Americans feel uncomfortable with silence and written communication is given importance in corporate environment.

Punctuality is also demanded by employees in America as they are having this conception that being on time in situations of business is being five minutes early and work or task provided to employees has to be finished on time as well, thereby meeting deadlines. An active participation is involved from employees of USA so as to see their involvement in work (Jacoby, Sanford, 1985).

Comparing Chinese work culture with American work culture

Chinese culture is different from American work culture in various aspects. The working conditions in china and USA is different from their root i.e culture. An individual who is having business must have clear understanding of working environment of Chinese. Chinese culture entirely is based on foundation of philosophy which is laid down by popular Chinese philosopher, Confucian who has created ancient philosophical system and ethical Chinese one which has been developed from his teachings earlier as Confucianism. As per Confucianism which is complex system of social, moral, philosophical, political and a religious thought having influence on culture being focused on respect for harmony and authority, hard work as well. On the other hand American business is based on gaining profit value and also gaining prospect market share. On the other hand Chinese value orientation collectively, being based on common welfare and contacts which are social.

Firms which are American and want to globalize and throughout expansion concerning Asia will have to understand that concepts which are western concerning codified rules and regulations and contracts are not having any application to business environment which is Chinese and is run through unwritten understandings and rules as Guanxi. Where, Guanxi is personal relations as per Chinese culture which is essential to establish effective relationship which is personal, having principals on other side. Effective is relationship, effective chance is gained for negotiating viable agreement which will benefit both parties.

As the cultural background of Chinese business is clear, further understanding of etiquette concerning appearance, behaviour and the manner in which they communicate so that businessmen who are modern and American are clear about manner in which they would effectively conduct various cultures.

China has given importance to appearance and for conducting business; men tend to wear very casual suits having neutral colors. Women on the other hand in China are not adaptive in showing much of their body, therefore, short skirts and dresses are not ought to be worn. Chinese are much of offended in situations where woman is showing much of her body. Business meetings should not be conducted in Jeans, but could be worn in regular jobs (Chinese Culture Connection, 1987).  On the other hand, as discussed earlier Americans employees prefer wearing casuals as dress code, until there is any policy by the company, but dressing of women as in American business women tend to wear skirts, but they should be avoided as per Americans in business, as well women should not over dress during day time and their make up should be light; in case of men in American business should have shocks matching their shoes and there should be no leg show between pant hem and shoe. Even hats should be removed when indoors.

Behaviour of Chinese is also different from any other country people, as America is effective in keeping personal contacts to those people, to whom it is doing business, but the Chinese are strongly disfavor of the same. In addition to this they are of thinking to avoid lot of movements with help of hand as people could think it to be of much disturbance. In case where people provide gifts in China then this could be issue which is sensitive, some of the gifts would be straw sandals, clocks, handkerchiefs, anything which is white, black or even blue or a cane or stork could be linked with death and it should not be provided at any of the meetings of business. Most respectable gift which is acceptable by Chinese is giving banquet. Employees are also use to have classy writing pens and in case where gift is being given, it should be given privately. Therefore, it is clear that behaviour of Chinese differ.

Communication is another factor which is essential in greeting or conducting business with any one. Coming in contact with Chinese individual or employees, ensure that they are giving their hand firstly and bowing and shaking head up and down is greeting regular for them. As it is in America to be on time, it will be treated as disrespect in China as well if any employee is reaching meeting late. Appointments are also required to be made so as to conduct businesses for showing Chinese people that employee is professional and is considering business. One should never opt for leaving the business meetings with Chinese at first, always it should be tried to allow them to leave at first. Most effective part of conducting business in China is to have effective communication with them.

China is considered to be unique country having established set of etiquettes of business and is having reliance on such set of rules for approximately 2500 years. China is considered to be homogenous society which is not susceptible to change. To have appropriate understanding of custom of Chinese is going to benefit individual for conducting business in China in various ways. If one is doing business with Chinese appearance, communication and behaviour are the factors which are important and in case of America as well an individual for conducting business should have proper understanding of such factors and requirement of Americans in business. Large amount of business is handled in China, therefore cultural knowledge of China is essential, before involving in any of the business transactions in China. No body is going to be far in China without having learnt about reaching signals as what is not said is as important as how it is said and what is said. Chinese are of the thinking of not using much of emotions so while meeting them, they would seem to be unfriendly or even rude to some and this is the reason why Chinese are having different manner of communicating and handling business with others. Social relationship in China is managed by saying that they are in circle or they are outside circle. Their inner circle comprises mostly of their friends, family, co-workers, friends and they leave rest of world outside circle (Seligman and Scott, 1999).

As China is communist rule, they often view themselves as collectivist oriented or interdependent, laying emphasis on society rather on individual. Chinese addresses begin from bigger to small places on the other hand western addresses are just opposite. Name of family begins first and collectivism is basic commitment to families and for relations. This is having effective translation into the hiring process of organisation as most of the members of family tend to hire and favoritism has to govern such a process. Employees which are Chinese are more committed and loyal to most of the organisations and this is proved from the fact that they are having respect for their traditions and having resistance to change in cultures of organisation as conformance is deeper in minds and in employees actions. Once it is set in minds of individuals then it becomes tougher for changing the same.

As per Hofstede (1991), China is Atheist society and their religion is clearly understood with the aid of Confucius concepts and teaching. In certain countries laws pertaining to religion are effectively used for governing a state and it is going to restrict willpower of individuals and their initiatives in conducting certain businesses. Therefore, support of Chinese government is supporting such a belief which intends to have reflection in attitude of people concerning determination and carefulness. Religion and belief on the other hand are going to determine level of individualistic- collectivist of society. In this concern, National Business practices are changing continually as younger people are ought to be educated in concern with western style schools of business and culture. Organisations have to adapt to their products and services to local culture and to be adoptive to local nation as well.  On the other hand USA is more individualistic society and organisations so tend to value time and employee’s individuality is also valued, laying emphasis on extrinsic factors. The less is commitment to cultures and accepting change is indicative of that American organisations are learning and having culture which is open, which intends to respond to volatile markets by initiating flexibility and change implementation.

Chinese culture is therefore, tricky and when one is ought to handle business in China then they are going to confuse one and attempt using bargaining tactics for persuading one involved in setting up business in China as large businesses are familiar with business concept by traveling round world as Apple Company and once the company is aware of the culture and business etiquette then it would be easier  for it to settle its business in China and same is the case for setting up business in USA; knowledge of working behaviour and communication pattern is essential for setting any plant in USA and making it globalised company.

In addition to the above information Chinese organisation tend to offer lesser amount of work pressure and provide lower salaries and organisations which are established in USA are provided with efficient amount of salary and hard working staff as well.

Therefore, according to the study done on working environment and working conditions in China and USA, it is concluded that both the countries are having different work environments and are working with their own cultures and beliefs. In order to successfully establishment of an organisation in China one has to follow culture, behaviour and norms of the working environment and to work with effectiveness in USA, one has to adopt to their communication patterns and most importantly the dress code which is specified as to both the country’s have to be adopted appropriately by those individuals trying to settle business or work in such country’s.

References

  • Business Ethics in the Chinese Context, (2008), Worker right and labor standards, [Online], Available: http://www.scu.edu/ethics/practicing/focusareas/business/china-update.html [Accessed 21 April, 2015]
  • Chinese Culture Connection, (1987), Chinese values and the search for culture- free dimensions of culture, Journal of cross-cultural Psychology, [Journal], [Accessed 23 April, 2015]
  • Hofstede, (1991), The strategic alliances between the American and German companies a cultural perspective, European Business Review [Journal], [Accessed 28 April, 2015]
  • ILO, (2015), Working Conditions, [Online], Available: http://www.ilo.org/global/topics/working-conditions/lang–en/index.htm [Accessed 20 April, 2015]
  • Jacoby, Sanford, (1985), Employing Bureaucracy: Managers, Unions, and the Transformation of Work in American Industry, New York: Columbia University Press, [Textbook], [Accessed 25 April, 2015]
  • Kochan, Thomas, Harry Katz, and Robert McKersie, (1986), The Transformation of American Industrial Relations, New York: Basic Books, [Textbook], [Accessed 26 April, 2015]
  • Seligman, Scott D. (1999), Chinese Business Etiquette, New York: Warner Business Books, [Textbook], [Accessed 27 April, 2015]
  • ZhouSivunen Pei, (2005), Organizational Culture Impact in ERP Implementation in China, [Online], Available:http://www.pafis.shh.fi/graduates/index.html [Accessed 21 April, 2015]