Geert that Hofstede and his colleagues came up with

Geert Hofstede is a Dutch professor who studied the cultural dimensions. Culture is defined by Hofstede as “the collective programing of the mind which distinguishes the members of one group or category of people from another” (Peng, 2013).  The textbook shares that Hofstede and his colleagues came up with five dimensions, known as the Hofstede Dimensions of Culture (Peng, 2013).  The chart on page 39 provides the outcome of his research and findings. The first dimension is power distance, “the extent to which less powerful members within a country expect and accept that power is distributed unequally” (Peng, 2013).  Brazil scored a 69 while the United States came in at 40 for power distance.  If I lived in Brazil, it would take a little time to get used to addressing my boss as Mr. or Mrs. instead of their first name.  This is part of their culture and an example of the distance of power. The second dimension is individualism. The textbook defines individualism as “the idea that the identity of an individual is fundamentally his or her own” (Peng, 2013).  Brazil came in at 38 while the United States was at 91.  Individual achievements are encouraged and celebrated in the United States.  If I lived in Brazil, my identity would be based on who my family or group was and our achievements would be group-based. Masculinity versus femininity represents the third dimension. Masculinity is defined as “a relatively strong form of societal-level sex-role differentiation whereby men tend to have occupations that reward assertiveness and women tend to work in caring professions” (Peng, 2013).  Femininity is defined as “a relatively weak form of societal-level sex-role differentiation whereby women occupy positions that reward assertiveness and more men work in caring professions” (Peng, 2013). Brazil comes in at 49 while the United States is at 62.  Brazil is one of the lowest masculine societies.  If I lived in Brazil I could have a more assertive employment position such as a politician or soldier. The fourth dimension is uncertainty avoidance, defined as “the extent to which members of a culture accept or avoid ambiguous situations and uncertainty” (Peng, 2013).  Brazil is at 76 and the United States is at 46.  The United States’ ranking shows that it is willing to take more risks and embrace more change than Brazil.  If I lived in Brazil, I would have to get used to not taking as many risks.  Not embracing change might not be so bad though. Who really loves change? The fifth and last dimension is long-term orientation, which is defined as a perspective that emphasizes perseverance and savings for future betterment” (Peng, 2013).  Brazil comes in at 65 while the United States is at 29.  The United States ranked low in this dimension revealing that we want instant gratification and fast results.  Brazil was much higher at 65 and has a culture of putting more emphasis on long-term savings, which wouldn’t be too bad to adopt. Peng, M. W. (2013). GLOBAL. Mason, OH: South-Western, Cengage Learning.


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