Managerial Issue Case Study

Case discussion: Ellen Moore (1.5 hrs)
Cultural changes and wrap up Cultural Frameworks and
Guidelines for Group Project
Team building activity: Team charter
The University of Sydney
Ellen Moore
How was the case preparation for you? (Use Emojis in Reactions)
What to expect in class?
You will be the center of discussion.
Use Raise Hand to talk (preferred), or
Use Chat to provide some key words and Ill call on you to elaborate.
Use Reactions in Zoom to engage, e.g, do we all agree with XX?
I ask questions and facilitate the discussion. I take notes on my board,
but I dont write down everything. When I wrap up the case, I build on all
the discussion points from you I do not have slides prefilled with key
You are not recommended to take a lot of notes during the discussion
because it interrupts your flow. Instead, pls write down some keywords
and then take a few minutes afterwards to reflect on the learning points
from the discussion.
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Ellen Moore
Breakout room discussion (10 min)
If you were Andrew, what are the problems you need to
What are the reasons for the conflict between Ellen and
What should Andrew do?
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Cross-cultural differences
Different consulting styles, how to treat clients
Lack of mutual cultural knowledge
Two teams not cooperating
Lack of respect
Do not trust Ellen, shes a woman
Lack of resources
Project delayed
Koreans lack of experience
Who is the boss? Co-manager structure
No effective communication
Is it a core problem in the case?

Replace Ellen? Scott?
Jack giving instruction, Ellen providing
instructions through Jack
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Solo manager
No exp
Market research project ->
beyond the scope
Not follow orders
Fire him?
Tech competence
Cross-cultural competence? Some
Not closing gap
Acceptable if qualified
Yes or No?
Who decides?
What does qualified mean?
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SI team Andrew
Jack Ellen
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Ellens Learning
Business card
KR: hierarchy -> show respect, social identity
US: contact info, function
Team bonding
Drinking: building trust
Not learning
Values: power between men and women, boss and
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Market research project
Beyond the scope
Delayed for 1 month /7 month for US
10 yrs for KR
Different consulting styles
US: negotiate
KR: do not question clients
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The University of Sydney
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US Demark Germany UK Poland France Italy Mexico Brazil Arabia
__Netherlands Finland Spain Russia Thailand India
Australia Austria Japan Turkey China Nigeria
Built through business-related
Form and drop easily
You do good work consistently
You are reliable
Relationship- based
Built through sharing meals, evening
drinks, etc.
Slowly over long time
Ive seen you at a deep level
Ive shared personal time with you
Meyer (2014)
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Context of Communication
US Netherlands Finland Spain Italy Singapore Iran China Japan
Australia Germany Denmark Poland Brazil Mexico France India Kenya Korea
Canada UK Argentina Peru Russia Saudi Indonesia
Precise, simple, clear
Face value
Sophisticated, layered, implied
Read between the lines
Meyer (2014)
The University of Sydney
Many Ways to Say No
In response to Has my proposal been accepted?
– If everything proceeds as planned, the proposal will be approved.
– Yes, approval looks likely, but
– Your question is very difficult to answer.
– We cannot answer this question at this time.
– You should know shortly.
Engholm (1991)
The University of Sydney
Cultural Frameworks and Complexities
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Rosa Martinez goes to Singapore
The University of Sydney
Discussion Questions: If you were Rosa
Would you use Hofstedes framework to help you prepare for
the upcoming business trip? Why or why not?
Benefits: good starting point; some useful dimensions;
need more training
Limitations: sample; measurement; within-culture
variation; cultural stereotyping; cultural change
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Are cultures changing? If so, how?
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Are cultures stable or changing?
Stable Changing
More contact with other
cultures, globalization
Cultural diversity
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Are we becoming more similar or more different?
Similar (converging)
Exposed to the same
influence, info
Different (diverging)
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Are cultures stable or changing?
Stable (Beugelsdijk & Maseland, 2011; Hofstede, 2001)
Culturalist perspective
Values are deeply rooted in
history and ecological system
E.g., East vs. West Germany
E.g., tightness vs. looseness
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Rice Versus Wheat Culture (Talhelm et al., 2014)
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Are cultures stable or changing?
Stable (Beugelsdijk & Maseland, 2011; Hofstede, 2001)
Culturalist perspective
Values are deeply rooted in
history and ecological system
E.g., East vs. West Germany
E.g., tightness vs. looseness
E.g., growing rice vs. wheat
Create formal institutions and are
passed on through generations
Reinforce values
Changing (Inglehart & Baker, 2000; Leung, 2006)
Economic development -> changes in
norms, values, and beliefs, for
Industrial: rational, hierarchical,
Post-industrial: self-expression,
Material security -> quality of life,
freedom, etc.
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Are we becoming more similar or more different?
Similar (converging)
More goods, services,
knowledge, education,
training, and people crossing
borders -> smaller cultural
diversity (Govindarajan &
Gupta, 2001)
Managers receive similar
MBA training and work in
MNEs -> internalized Western
values (Ralston et al., 1997)
Different (diverging)
Only a small fraction of
worlds population is truly
globalized (Leung et al., 2005)
In many developing countries,
people take actions to
distinguish themselves from
the West and assert their
cultural uniqueness (Thomas &
Peterson, 2020).
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Santos, Warnum, & Grossmann (2017)
– 2010
– 2010
Global Increases
in Individualism
Practices – household size – living alone – older adults living alone – divorce rate
Values – importance of friends vs
– Independent children – Preference for self-expression
34 out of 41
increase in
39 out of 53
increase in
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Weve all (almost) become more individualistic.
But are there still differences among countries?
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Santos, Warnum, & Grossmann (2017)
The University of Sydney
Taras, Steel, & Kirkman (2012)
Cultural change
is not uniform
South Koreas
Individualism score:
18 (1980) – > 61 (2000)
The University of Sydney
Discussion Questions: If you were Rosa
Would you use Hofstedes framework to help you prepare for
the upcoming business trip? Why or why not?
Benefits: good starting point; values -> behaviors
Limitations: sample; measurement; within-culture
variation; cultural stereotyping; cultural change
Go to Hofstedes and GLOBE websites and and
Singapore on collectivism. What do you find?
What other cultural dimensions might be relevant for you to
prepare for your trip?
What other cultural dimensions might be relevant for
you to prepare for your trip?
What might be relevant to a negotiation?
Communication (low vs. high context of communication)
e.g., do they say no directly? How do I know if they agree or not?
Emotional expressiveness (neutral vs. affective cultures in Trompennars dimensions)
e.g., do they reveal emotions? Can I manipulate my emotional expression to
influence them?
e.g., do I use rational persuasion or emotional appeal?
Time orientation (sequential vs. synchronic in Textbook Ex. 2.5)
e.g., negotiating one issue at a time or multiple issues simultaneously?
Task vs. relationship-orientation
e.g., starting business right away or having some informal social activities first?
e.g., who makes the call? Is it a top-down or consensual decision?
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What other cultural dimensions might be relevant for
you to prepare for your trip?
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What other factors would be important in a crosscultural management problem?
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Other factors to consider
Personal Characteristics
Managerial &
Interpersonal Dynamics
Industrial &
Organizational Contexts
National & Cultural
e.g., business environment, competition,
stakeholders, strategies, structures, org culture, etc.
e.g., role expectations, tasks, followers,
relationships, power dynamics, situational factors
such as urgency, etc.
e.g., economic, political, and social
environments, values, beliefs, worldviews, etc.
e.g., personalities, experiences, personal values
& beliefs, etc.
A is beyond
(national) cultural differences.
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How to better use cultural frameworks and
Keep in mind that cultural dimensions/values are country-level knowledge
Helps us
Understand patterns of a cultural group
Identify cultural influences on our behaviors
Develop an appreciation of different worldviews
Be attentive to biased judgment
Be cautious
Methodological limitations of the research
Within-cultural variation: not everyone endorses a high level of the
societal value
Cultural stereotypes: use them as working hypotheses
Cultural change
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How to better use cultural frameworks and
dimensions? (contd)
Start with your problem
Negotiating vs. motivating
Motivating the entire workforce vs. motivating one employee
When does national culture matter most? (Taras, Steel, & Kirkman, 2011)
Level of analysis, outcome type, personal characteristics, environmental
Focus less on the country scores and more on the effects of cultural values on the
A countrys average score conveys limited information and does not reflect
within-country variation (there may be large differences and diversities within
a country)
Some countries may be ranked in the middle
Effects of cultural values: e.g., future orientation -> long-term planning and
investing vs. short-term return -> company strategy and reward system
The University of Sydney
Group Project Briefing and Team Charter
Group project (30%)
Group video case (20%, group mark)
Individual presentation (5%, individual mark)
Peer evaluation (5%, individual mark)
Instructions will be available on Canvas after class.
Team building activity: Getting Organized Team Charter
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Group Project (Group Video Case: 20%)
This group project assignment consists in producing a video-case
that contains two parts
Part 1 (case description): a 5-10 min video-based dramatization
of a cross-cultural management problem. It should end with the
question: “what should the protagonist do?
This part should only tell the story of what happened. You
should not do any analysis here such as identifying the key
managerial issues.
Part 2 (case analysis): a 15-20 min segment in which you
analyze the described problem.
The content of the video should be related to the topics discussed
in the course.
The University of Sydney
Part 1 (case description): you can use either narratives or
Note: In Week 12 we will watch your Part 1 Videos and
discuss your cases in class. Consider: whether your Part 1
Video provides sufficient information for the audience to
have a meaningful discussion.
Part 2 (case analysis): business presentation (imagine you are
a group of consultants and are presenting your analysis and
recommendations to a client)
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Where can I find a good case?
1. Your interview with a real person.
In the interview, you will gather the background information and the crosscultural management problems the interviewee has experienced. You will then
summarize the case and present it in the first part of the video (5-10 min case
2. A book or a journal.
E.g., A case study article from Harvard Business Review: Your star salesperson lied.
Should he get a second chance? Or The Expat Dilemma
Note: you cannot use these ones because we will discuss them in class.
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Search for cases in
The University of Sydney
Where can I find a good case?
1. Your interview with a real person.
In the interview, you will gather the background information and the crosscultural management problems the interviewee has experienced. You will then
summarize the case and present it in the first part of the video (5-7 min case
2. A book or a journal.
E.g., A case study article from Harvard Business Review: Your star salesperson lied.
Should he get a second chance? Or The Expat Dilemma
Note: you cannot use these ones because we will discuss them in class.
3. A movie.
E.g., American Factory by Netflix
4. News:
1. The downfall of Carlos Ghosn in Financial Times, Tesla is the hot spot for young
job seekers in the Wall Street Journal (will be discussed in Week 5)
Note: this only serves as a starting point for you to gather more information
to make a case.
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Marking Criteria
Part 1: Case description (6 points)
Clear description of facts related to key management issues,
including two or more topics covered in this course.
Topic 1 (2 points)
Topic 2 (2 points)
Note: You should NOT label these topics in the Part 1 Video
but provide sufficient details in the video for the audience to
identify them, e.g., communication styles -> act out a
Clear description of different layers of problems other than the
national cultural environment (e.g., what do we know about the
industry, the company, and/or the main people involved?) (2 points)
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Marking Criteria
Part 2: Case analysis (14 points)
Appropriate application of relevant cross-cultural management theoretical
concepts (2 points)
Critical thinking and creativity in analysis and development of arguments
(2 points)
Use of relevant data from the case and further research (2 points)
Well justified action plans (2 points)
Concrete, and practical action plans (2 points)
A clear link between action plans and problems identified (2 points)
A coherent and smooth presentation (2 points)
Similar marking criteria for Individual Assignment.
The University of Sydney
Deliverables: Five files
1. Video Part 1, Name this video with your group name and “Video Case Part 1”, e.g.,
“Fantastic 5 Video Case Part 1”.
2. Video Part 2. Name this video with your group name and “Video Case Part 2”, e.g.,
“Fantastic 5 Video Case Part 2”.
3. The script (if you are acting) or the transcript (if you are doing a narrative) of Part 1
case description, with the source of the case (for me to write feedback on)
If the case comes from an interview, then include the position of the
interviewee and the company (I will not disclose this information to anyone.
You don’t have to disclose the name of the interviewee).
If the case comes from a book, a movie, or news, then include the links to the
original source.
4. PowerPoint slides of Part 2 case analysis (for me to write feedback on)
5. A Team Logbook that records your main team activities (see template on Canvas).
Well do a team building activity today to get your started. The logbook will be
used when a peer assessment is lodged.
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Group Project (Individual Presentation: 5%)
Marking criteria: Engage with the audience (use notes
sparingly), eye level camera shot, confident and relaxed
delivery, effective use of body language and voice, show
enthusiasm for the topic, clarity and pace are appropriate.
Reading your notes will result in a very low grade.
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Group Project (Peer Evaluation: 5%)
Qualitative feedback
Provide meaningful and actionable feedback to each of your group members
after completing the project. Examples will be provided.
The 5% peer evaluation mark depends on the quality of the feedback you
provide to your peers.
Quantitative evaluation
Group members will rate each other on the contribution to the group work
out of 100.
People who receive an average peer evaluation lower than 80 will receive a
portion of the group video case mark.
E.g., group video case = 15/20, quantitative peer evaluation = 60/100
The individual will receive a group video case mark = 15 * 80/100 = 12
If you experience challenges in your group work, pls address the issues as early
as possible.
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Pls check whether you are in the correct group. Canvas -> People ->
16 people have not self-selected into a group
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Team Building: Getting Organized Team Charter
It is one of the best ways to get teams off to a good start and
avoid difficulties.
Think about the group project you will complete for this unit
and answer the questions in the handout.
You may want to discuss how your cultural values will
influence the way you work together.
Submit the completed Team Charter handout to Canvas by
Aug 22.
Only one member from the group needs to submit it.
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Next Week
Canvas Online Module 4 (Decision-making) will become available
Read the case (Your star salesperson lied. Should he get a second chance?)
and prepare for class discussion.
What do you recommend?
What are the reasons supporting your recommendation?
What is the opposing position?
What are the reasons supporting the opposing position?
How do you refute the opposing arguments?

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