Cultural Indoctrination and Management Education Curriculum

Cultural Indoctrination and Management Education Curriculum

Bryan Christiansen (Global Research Society, LLC, Williamston, USA)
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 15
DOI: 10.4018/IJAMTR.2019010101

Abstract

As organizations are increasingly confronted with the need to engage with stakeholders from a variety of different cultural backgrounds, the need to understand the ways in which cultural imperatives play into individual and collective performances becomes increasingly important. These cultural traditions exert immense influence on business issues ranging from consumer behavior to management. This article examines the need for management education to establish an introductory course on cultural indoctrination (CI) for business students in an era of global hypercompetition. CI is defined as the process of inculcating ideas, attitudes, and cognitive strategies during the transfer of cultural traditions from one generation to the next with the expectation that such traditions will not be questioned in the future. This article introduces the CI concept and subsequently suggests how it should be incorporated into a university curriculum focusing on factors that promote convergence in international management contexts.
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Introduction

The purpose of this article is to examine the need for management education to establish an introductory course on cultural indoctrination (CI) for business students, with the long-term goal of synthesizing CI into mainstream business programs, in an era of global hypercompetition. Disruptive technologies, a growing global skills gap, industry uncertainty, global inflation, and a quickly aging world population are just some of the key factors affecting long-term economic growth and prosperity today. These issues are forcing corporations and nations alike to implement new strategies to contend effectively with contemporary realities. Among other things, the previous statement means that business education and training institutions must reevaluate their offerings, especially as they pertain to cultural studies, since firms must contend with increasingly complex organizational situations across international borders requiring new “hard- and soft-skills” in the workplace (Varlander et al., 2016; Ingols & Shapiro, 2014).

Cultural origins can permit the prediction of individual behavior in an organizational environment under various situations (Trompenaars & Hampden-Turner, 2010; Hofstede, 2001; Hall, 1976). Therefore, as organizations are confronted with the need to engage with stakeholders from a variety of different cultural backgrounds, the need to understand the ways in which cultural imperatives play into individual and collective productivity becomes increasingly paramount. This need ultimately provides the ability for organizations to sustain a competitive advantage and to remain profitable over time (Campbell, Coff, & Kryscynski, 2012; Porter, 2015).

Achieving these goals demands top management to appreciate and understand the four global forces affecting business today (McKinsey & Company, 2015): urbanization, accelerating technological change, an aging world, and greater global connections. Anderson and Wong (2013) state that obtaining competitive advantage in the digital economy of the 21st century requires focusing on intangible factors including firm strategy and positioning, radical innovation and first mover advantages, intangible resources and competencies, organizational ambidexterity, network effects and externalities, transaction cost efficiency, and relational optimality. It is also important to consider the effects of disruptive technologies on business operations and the global economy such as The Internet of Things, advanced robotics, 3D printing, next generation genomics, and renewable energy (McKinsey Global Institute, 2013).

“All of these factors will make destabilizing cycles of volatility more likely than ever in the past” (McKinsey Quarterly, 2010). Associated effects include global inflation, drastically altered business and product life cycles, and the need for corporations to increase liquidity buffers for unexpected changes in global markets (PryMarke LLC, 2015). The key point here is that such volatility will require far more flexibility and creativity in business and education than was common in the past. However, many educational institutions have not yet advanced creative (and critical) thinking capabilities sufficiently for business use after graduation (Şen, 2011; Kresin, 2012).

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