Arab Organizational And Business Culture Essay Example For College

Introduction

The culture, beliefs, and practices of people in a given demographic or geographic description significantly impact various fundamental aspects of their organizational and business culture. People of different cultures exhibit specific protocols and perspectives dictated by their beliefs. Religion and tradition constitute most of the determinants of the laws, government policies, and business culture formulated in a country. The Arab and Middle East countries are no exception as they are driven by the dominant Islam religion and have their own cultural beliefs.

Differences, Characteristics, and Challenges of Arab and Western Cultures

Western culture is undoubtedly different from the Arab and Middle East cultures. The Arabs build their traditional, organizational, and business culture regarding their religious principles (Islam). However, these traditions have been evolving gradually over the past few decades and are slowly accommodating distinct aspects of western culture. This mixture of culture and religion has proven to hinder foreign business people. Unlike in the western world, the culture and religion of Arab countries cannot be separated. Family loyalty, organizational hierarchy, and communication are some of the unique and highly regarded traits of the Arab and Middle East business culture. Religion is also taken more seriously than Western countries, and businesses in the Middle East uphold the Islamic virtues in their operations.

To work well in the Middle East, one has to face challenges such as adapting to the religious-based laws, learning to incorporate the Arab culture in business, and adapting to the ways of life of Arabs. Language, communication style, and traditional practices are essential factors in working as an expert in Arab and the Middle East. Human resource managers working in this region also face challenges, including culture and leadership engagement, incorporation of religion, and addressing the inter-cultural relationships in business.

Religion Impact on Business

Religion is comprised of shared ideas, ideals, and rituals. Values are beliefs about what is correct, sound, or significant. Religion typically serves as a foundation for ethical systems, and religion expresses ethical concepts (Waxin and Bateman, 2016). Codes of conduct and ideals that shape the behavior of a group of people are examples of ethical systems, as stated by (Bastian et al., 2018). Muslims believe in Allah and follow the Quran and Sharia law (Waxin and Bateman, 2016). According to Islamic principles, profits should benefit the collective, to which individuals are obligated as members of society (Siddique, 28; Zgheib 214; Hammoudeh, 2007). Islam can influence organizational goals, strategies, critical success factors (KSFs), structure, and, ultimately, management control systems.

An example is during the holy month of Ramadan where businesses might expect a decline in output and contractual commitments. Business meetings are held around the five daily prayers, for which space must be made available. Women are barred from full engagement in business in conservative Islamic nations (Siddique, 2017). The prevalent religion and ethical system of a country impact international business since they determine society’s behavior. This must be regarded with caution, however, because a shared faith or ethics does not always result in the same professional behavior. For example, two countries with the same faith may have opposing views on business owing to other factors such as culture.

Political Impact on Business

According to (Siddique, 2017) the effect of the three political institutions, namely the legislative, the executive, and the judiciary, informing, guiding, developing, and managing economic activity is what is termed as a political environment. In contrast, a political environment, according to Jamali and Hossary (2019), is a “permanent pattern of human contact that incorporates, to a substantial level, control, influence, power, or authority.” Any business or company’s day-to-day operations that might be impacted can be affected by the political systems of the nations. Hence in business, the political environment is considered an essential aspect of the firm’s microenvironment.

Everyday Life and Customs

A culture is a way of life as a whole, whereas a custom is a single habit or method of accomplishing something. According to Hammoudeh (2016), culture is inherited from previous generations, transmitted, and handed to future generations. Culture is a body of information that individuals interpret their experiences and produce social behavior. This information shapes values, shapes attitudes, and shapes behavior. Culture affects business in various ways. Communication and time are aspects of daily life in the Arabic state that affect business. Saudis, for example, believe they have ‘plenty of time for everything’ (Bachkirov 2019). On communication, the Saudis language can be cartegorized as high context, meaning its indirect and nonverbal qualities need to be interpreted to comprehend the complete message (Zgheib, 2017).

This aspect has an immense effect on the way business is done. This belief of having plenty of time has become a custom hence they appointments are frequently late, open, and frequently interrupted (Hammoudeh, 2016). In the Arabic states, face-to-face encounters are required to network and socialize since the formation of long-term personal ties is vital in Saudi Arabia. Saudis appreciate the opinions of their friends and relatives. Because agreements are built on trust and commitment, a verbal agreement is as valuable as a document.

Heritage And History’s Impact on Business

According to Budhwar (2019), organizational actors selectively utilize history to validate or delegitimize potential strategic paths for the future. Strategic concepts are most readily legitimized when shown as the steadfast followers of a successful plan. The historical example might be a current strategy employed by the organization or a previous strategy that has since been abandoned.

Hofstede’s 6d Model For Arab Countries

Hofstede’s 6D framework is essential in understanding the culture and its influence on business and organizational parameters. This section will review the Arab culture using Hofstede’s 6D model to determine the relationship and effects of culture on business activity.

Power distance – This dimension stipulates the cultural attitude concerning the hierarchy of individuals in a society or organization. The Arab and Middle East countries score highly (90) (Abi-Raad, 2019). This means that the Arab culture embraces hierarchy in business and organizational perspectives.

Individualism This dimension addresses the degree of dependence among members of the society. It gauges whether the people identify as individuals or collectively. Arab scores 25, which is regarded as a collectivist society (Abi-Raad, 2019). The business culture, therefore, involves the collectiveness of the workforce.

Masculinity – a high score translates to a competitive, successful, and achievement culture (masculine). In contrast, a feminine culture has a low score and is characterized by care and quality of life. Arab countries are neither since their score is 50 (Abi-Raad, 2019).

There is no detail on the uncertainty and long-term orientation entities of Hofstede’s 6D framework.

Reference List

Abi-Raad, M., 2019. Western organizational theories: Middle Eastern style: How much do you know about the culture? The Journal of Organizational Management Studies, 2019, pp.1- 16.

Bachkirov, A.A., 2019. Towards a better understanding of organizational buying behavior across cultures: empirical evidence from the Arabian Gulf. Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing.

Bastian, B.L., Sidani, Y.M. and El Amine, Y., 2018. Women entrepreneurship in the Middle East and North Africa: A review of knowledge areas and research gaps. Gender in Management: An International Journal.

Budhwar, P., Pereira, V., Mellahi, K. and Singh, S.K., 2019. HRM in the Middle East: Challenges and future research agenda. Asia Pacific Journal of Management, 36(4), pp.905-933.

Hammoudeh, M.M., 2016. Islamic values and management practices: Quality and transformation in the Arab world. Routledge.

Jamali, D. and Hossary, M., 2019. CSR logics in the Middle East. In Practising CSR in the Middle East (pp. 53-80). Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.

Siddique, C.M., 2017. National culture and the learning organization: A reflective study of the learning organization concept in a non-Western country. Management Research Review.

Waxin, M.F., and Bateman, R.E., 2016. Human resource management in the United Emirates. In Handbook of human resource management in the Middle East. Edward Elgar Publishing.

Zgheib, P.W. ed., 2017. Entrepreneurship and business innovation in the Middle East. IGI Global.

The Reasons Behind Asphalt Designs Of The Roads In Residential Areas

Roads vary not only in their width and purpose but also in their form and height. For example, some people might wonder why residential roads are higher in the middle and lower at the curb. For this assignment, I took an in-depth look into the reasons behind asphalt designs in residential areas. The answer, however, is not entirely apparent since there are several important reasons behind this design.

The initial reason for such a slope is the water drainage. This method of asphalt layout not only prevents puddles from appearing but also ushers water towards storm drains, preventing most of the floods (“Transportation & storm water design manuals,” 2017). The exact angle depends on the number of lanes, although it usually does not exceed 2-3% (“Transportation & storm water design manuals,” 2017). Such an angle also makes underground vapors less harmful to the road surface (Virginia Asphalt Association, n.d.). Residential areas must be able to withstand weather conditions without taking any damage.

At the same time, this slope gives another advantage in design. Such a method allows heavyweight vehicles, such as school buses or garbage trucks, to utilize these roads with the required frequency without severely damaging them (Virginia Asphalt Association, n.d.). Their weight is transferred to the curb, discouraging road deformation towards the middle. Moreover, even a slightly uneven road serves as a natural barrier to speeding. Residential streets must be designed in such a way so they prevent high speed and do not accept high traffic (Virginia Asphalt Association, n.d.). Low traffic makes roads last longer without repair, reducing upkeep costs. In conclusion, there are several benefits of slightly elevated middle of residential roads, such as decreased wear rates, efficient drainage, and more pedestrian-friendly traffic.

References

Transportation & storm water design manuals. (2017). The City of San Diego. Web.

Virginia Asphalt Association. (n.d.). Residential street design. 2021, Web.

Japan’s Long-Term Recovery After The 2011 Tsunami

Japan was hit by a devastating earthquake in 2011 in its eastern region. A few minutes later, there followed a massive tsunami which was approximately 100-foot waves. The earthquake claimed over 100 lives, but the severity of the matter was when the tsunami spiked where over 20,000 people were reported to have died from the incident (Syamsidik & Suppasri, 2018). More than 130,000 buildings were struck, and the economic crisis was reported to fall by $360 billion in Japan (Syamsidik & Suppasri, 2018). Japan recovered gradually and still does; the tragic incident has not yet been forgotten. Japan still faces challenges in recovering from the tsunami, with many after-action reviews of the recovery phase indicating several things (Williams et al., 2020). The purpose of this discussion is to present the major challenges which Japan has faced while recovering from the incident.

Several site planning strategies should have been conducted to prevent the negative effects of the tsunami in Japan. First, avoiding inundation areas by building premises away from the hazard area by locating in a high zone would have helped. Secondly, through environmental agencies, the government would have slowed water by boosting forests, ditches, and slopes that would have enabled slow waves, hence filtering out the debris (Valenzuela et al., 2019). Third, water steering by strategically using angled walls would have reduced robust waves’ impact. Lastly, blocking by hardening walls and terraces would reduce the tsunami waves in any strike.

The existing mitigation controls did not perform well because the instrumentation systems that were placed to sense earthquakes did not effectively detect the possible massive strike. Japan had built sea walls in some parts but needed to apply the idea in all coastal regions, so the plan did not work perfectly (Williams et al., 2020). At that time, people were only enlightened about the earthquake’s possible occurrences but not a tsunami; thus, there was low preparation, which led to a massive strike by the disaster and worsened its consequences. Japan at that time boasted of slowing the movement of water and the formation of delicate slopes by thickening the forest. However, there was a need to combine engineering and construction ideas which would have prevented the entire outcome.

New appropriate mitigation measures have been applied to fasten recovery because Japan has recycled and incinerated all the debris that occurred during the tsunami. Infrastructure has been boosted with modern buildings being built with absorbers and sensors which use current microservices monitored by modern computer programs. The recovery strategy has worked effectively since 2011; there have been low-risk earthquake strikes cases (Williams et al., 2020). Modern buildings and structures have been preventing gradual fast water movement with debris and slope formation effectively blocked. The country has employed intensive protection and educational programs which provide insights into Japan’s tsunami issues.

Japan has followed the recovery strategies from the tsunami by a reconstruction which emphasizes several layers of defense against earthquake activities for regions in the country as Kirikiri. Seawalls and dykes have been hugely applied as hard countermeasures for the plan (Williams et al., 2020). From the results, the Japanese engineering bodies are heavily monitoring the level of qualitative construction from the base, edge, and top of structures in all the regions. Two-level tsunami concept which includes level one and two have offered protection and education programs for a possible strike in the country (Syamsidik & Suppasri, 2018). The application of multilayers and preventive safety concepts has been evident in hilly areas and is key in preventing debris, slopes, and fast water movement.

References

Syamsidik, & Suppasri, A. (2018). Tsunami recovery processes after the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami and the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami: Lessons learned and challenges. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction, 29, 1-2.

Valenzuela, V., Samarasekara, R., Kularathna, A., Perez, G., Norikazu, F., & Crichton, R. et al. (2019). Comparative analysis of tsunami recovery strategies in small communities in Japan and Chile. Geosciences, 9(1), 26-42.

Williams, J., Wilson, T., Horspool, N., Paulik, R., Wotherspoon, L., Lane, E., & Hughes, M. (2020). Assessing transportation vulnerability to tsunamis: Utilizing post-event field data from the 2011 Tōhoku tsunami, Japan, and the 2015 Illapel tsunami, Chile. Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, 20(2), 451-470.

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