The Impact of Culture on Workplace Conflict in the Caribbean

The Impact of Culture on Workplace Conflict in the Caribbean

Susan Scott (St. George’s University, Grenada)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0306-6.ch018
OnDemand PDF Download:


There are many subtleties within a culture that affect decision-making. Lack of understanding of these nuances enhances the mystique of cross-cultural business. Global managers need to better understand trans-cultural decision-making to maximize the benefits of alliances and business relationships abroad. One of these subtleties, often discussed in relation to business in the Orient, is conflict management. The notion of “face” and the importance of individual honor pervade cultural briefing materials on countries such as Japan. It is a defining difference in human relationship management between East and West. Yet when dealing with employees in nations speaking the same language, as a U.S. manager to a Caribbean manager, one often fails to account for equally significant differences in managing conflict. This chapter discusses the impact of culture-specific attitudes concerning workplace conflict on business performance in the Caribbean, using examples specifically from Grenada.
Chapter Preview

Workplace Conflict As An Aspect Of Business Performance Management

Today’s organizations are under tremendous pressure to perform, facing challenges from all directions in a world of information overload, global competition, unavoidable inter-dependence, and frenetic pace. Globalization creates many new business partners. Mergers are made which create multi-cultural work families. Manufacturing moves into ever more distant and low cost territories, while jaded, globe-trotting tourists explore ever more remote recreational sites. It soon becomes apparent that, in order to succeed, understanding other cultures is an imperative. Aligning the efforts of individual workers toward common goals and objectives is one of management’s key tasks. In an environment where speed to market can mean the difference between profit and loss, ensuring effective collaboration between work groups becomes a core competency for many firms. The responsibilities of management include providing a workplace in which people are not distracted from key tasks by co-worker hostility, a manager’s refusal to resolve problems, or executive feuds.

Complete Chapter List

Search this Book:
Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Ghassan Al-Qaimari
Bryan Christiansen
Chapter 1
Andreas Michael Hartmann
The theory of cultural dimensions constitutes the foundation of a significant portion of comparative cross-cultural business research. From... Sample PDF
The Theory of Cultural Dimensions
Chapter 2
Suzanne Gagnon, Pamela Lirio
This chapter explores individual intercultural competence as an enacted capability developed through social interaction and experience with dominant... Sample PDF
Follow the Experts Follow the Experts: Intercultural Competence as Knowing-in-Practice
Chapter 3
Kathrin Kiesel, Parissa Haghirian
Exposure to other cultures is common through extensive travel, living in ethnically diverse environments, attending universities abroad, or having... Sample PDF
Bicultural Managers and their Role in Multinational Corporations: An Exploratory Study in Japan
Chapter 4
Andrea Banto
Globalization increased the expansion of multinational corporations to countries on all continents leading to growth. Companies like Wal-Mart... Sample PDF
Organizational Culture and Organizational Effectiveness in a Global Context
Chapter 5
Ekaterina Turkina
Globalization and regionalization in the contemporary world transform inter-state relationships and intensify economic, social, and political... Sample PDF
Cross-Border Inter-Firm Networks in Contemporary Europe: The Effects of Structural and Cultural Embeddedness on Firm Performance
Chapter 6
Omar J. Khan
While the idea of regio-centric firm behavior had been expounded as early as 1969 (see Perlmutter & Heenan, 1974), research in international... Sample PDF
Understanding the Realities of Contemporary Internationalization of the MNE: Regionalization vs. Globalization
Chapter 7
Nigel L Williams, Tom Ridgman, Y S Shi
Small developing countries, in contrast to their developed counterparts, are characterized by a narrow resource base, (relatively) weak... Sample PDF
Resource Based Internationalization from Small Developing Countries: Towards a Phase Model of Internationalization
Chapter 8
Fabrício Fernando Foganhole dos Santos, Irene Kazumi Miura
This chapter provides a framework for understanding the business challenges facing Brazilian companies. Based on the symbolic school of interpretive... Sample PDF
Internationalization of Business in Emerging Countries and National Culture: The Brazilian Case
Chapter 9
Maud Oortwijn
The entry mode choice is at the core of International Business studies (Oortwijn, 2011a). IB research concerns the organization of firm activities... Sample PDF
Foreign Business Environments and Entry Mode Choice: Organize Activities Internal within or External to the Firm?
Chapter 10
Keikoh Ryu
Anti-Japanese sentiment in China since the Second World War has been exacerbated by recent territorial disputes involving the Senkaku Islands and... Sample PDF
China’s “Harmonious Society” Challenges Corporate Japan: Towards a Dual Vision of Profitability and Social Responsibility
Chapter 11
Diana Bank, Mohammad Ayub Khan
As the international business environment becomes increasingly global and competitive, a manager’s job becomes more challenging and diverse. The... Sample PDF
Globalism, Culture, and Business Environment: A Middle Eastern Perspective
Chapter 12
Mohammad Ayub Khan, Diana Bank
In contemporary globalization, companies need to be entrepreneurial, innovative, creative, and dynamic since the life cycle of products is... Sample PDF
Globalism, Culture and Business Environment: A Latin American Perspective
Chapter 13
Anabella Davila, Marta M. Elvira
The purpose of this chapter is to understand the strategic role performance management systems play in organizations, and to identify the evolution... Sample PDF
Performance Management Systems in Mexico
Chapter 14
Magdalena Bielenia-Grajewska
The purpose of this chapter is to discuss Business Performance Management (BPM) by taking into account its communicative and linguistic aspects. To... Sample PDF
Business Performance Management from the Systemic Communicative and Linguistic Side
Chapter 15
Gang Yang, Hans-Christian Pfohl, Sasa Saric
Entrepreneurship deals with how firms explore new short-lived economic opportunities, while strategic management explains how firms create and... Sample PDF
Strategic Entrepreneurship: Competitive Advantages Amidst Globalization and Technological Change
Chapter 16
Manuela Presutti, Lucrezia Zambelli
This work examines to what extent cultural differences at a level both of intra-organizational multinational network and inter-organizational... Sample PDF
A Social Capital Approach to Inter-Cultural Differences: Empirical Evidence from a Global Tour Operator
Chapter 17
Yongjiang Shi, Zheng Liu
This chapter provides the models and variation of culture. Specifically, the following concepts will be introduced: an understanding of the original... Sample PDF
Cultural Models and Variations
Chapter 18
Susan Scott
There are many subtleties within a culture that affect decision-making. Lack of understanding of these nuances enhances the mystique of... Sample PDF
The Impact of Culture on Workplace Conflict in the Caribbean
Chapter 19
Maud Oortwijn
The key problem for commitment to international business activities is the lack of knowledge about a host country and its (business) culture. A... Sample PDF
Immigrant Effect in International Expansion
Chapter 20
Julianne Seely
The purpose of this chapter is to concentrate on Global Human Resource Management (GHRM) by demonstrating how the functional areas of Human Resource... Sample PDF
Human Resource Management for the 21st Century Global Economy
About the Contributors