Posted: March 24th, 2023


The globalization is extensively being experienced in today’s world. Consequently, workplaces are now experiencing cross-cultural integration issues. Therefore, it is important for executives and staff members to understand the various cultural factors that may affect proper communication towards making firms productive. According to Professor Geert Hofstede, three cultural dimensions contribute to a well-established communication on the global market (Hofstede, 1987). In this study, Individualism Versus Collectivism (IDV), Uncertainty Avoidance Index (UAI), and Power Distance Index (PDI) will be discussed. In addition, the analysis will define the contrasts in communication between an individual from the American and Saudi Arabian descents to the three cultural factors.

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Firstly, the Power Distance Index (PDI) is explained as the acceptable existence of inequality between people in power and those that are not (Hofstede, 1987). Therefore, my interaction with a low PDI American culture led to constrained communication. In fact, the issue was that my colleague was too fore fronted considering that most of the times they were candid at initiating dialogue and action with me and those in authority. On the other hand, I was always inclined to for directives and guidance to take up tasks that I considered unimportant in the absence of the managers.

Secondly, Individualism Versus Collectivism (IDV) refers to the binding ties and its strength in people within a community (Hofstede, 1987). Therefore, with my Saudi Arabian Low IDV culture, I was always suppressing negative feedbacks to ensure that politeness and harmony were adhered to. However, my American colleague from a high IDV culture always encouraged the expression of one’s ideas and feelings whenever an individual felt impolite.

Thirdly, Uncertainty Avoidance Index (UAI) was also another cultural factor that led to communication issues. In particular, UAI refers to the ability of a person’s culture to value predictability (Hofstede, 1987).  In fact, being from a high UAI culture, there were issues that always arose because I would set clear and concise goals while on the other hand, my expectations at work were to be met. In addition, my American colleague from a low UAI culture never felt a sense of urgency in any matter despite the need to reach the organization’s goals.

As is evident from the above analysis the cultural factors are the leading causes of strained communication within organizations. Therefore, the central line context indicates that one’s culture could either be high or low. In essence, the discussion has shown how American and Saudi Arabian individuals always collide because of the difference in their cultural factor dimensions.

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