For this assignment, you are asked to prepare a Reflection Paper. After you finish the reading assignment, reflect on the concepts and write about it. What do you understand completely? What did not quite make sense? The purpose of this assignment is to provide you with the opportunity to reflect on the material you finished reading and to expand upon those thoughts. If you are unclear about a concept, either read it again, or ask your professor. Can you apply the concepts toward your career? How?
This is not a summary. A Reflection Paper is an opportunity for you to express your thoughts about the material by writing about them.
The writing you submit must meet the following requirements:
be at least two pages;
include your thoughts about the main topics; and
include financial performance, quality performance, and personnel performance.
Format the Reflection Paper in your own words using APA style, and include citations and references as needed to avoid instances of plagiarism.
The reading assignment that you are to reflect on is Chapter 11, in the text. My written lecture for this Unit is basically a reflection on Chapter 11. Find an interesting part or two of the chapter and tell me what you got out of it. It’s not a hard assignment. If you read my lecture, you will see the part of Chapter 11 that intrigued me the most was the subject of codetermination on page 367. Anything that intrigues you in Chapter 11 is fine with me.
Does the ringisei decision-making process by consensus, which is used by the Japanese, reach the same conclusion as the top-down methods, which are used by American management? Some might label the Japanese decision-making system as simply procrastination. Others appreciate the method and expect productive outcomes. One major challenge is to build an organizational culture to adopt the practice of ringisei. If only half of an organization uses ringisei, it is likely to cause miscommunication and result in frustration.
The ringisei is based on the theory that the employee is an important part of the overall success of an enterprise. It is common to hear a lot about
empowering the employees. Is creativity and innovation rewarded, ignored, or punished for the lower level employee in America?
Could the Japanese system of decision making have led to the controversy of what Toyota knew about unintended acceleration problems? This may be the best example of the use of silence in the Japanese culture frustrating Americans as a nation. This is not an explicit accusation of Toyota or of Japanese culture. Rather, it is inserted here to demonstrate potential consequences of management methods, processes, systems, and decision making. Read pages 106-108 of Luthans and Doh (2012) concerning this topic. The cause of the unintended acceleration problem announced by the United States government was due to bad floor mats or driver error. Initially, electronic problems were not mentioned.
The March 2011 Fukushima tsunami and nuclear disaster made another impression on the world regarding the Japanese good decision-making systems. The Japanese decision-making system, ringisei, is about group decision-making and not individual decision-making. This might have been a hindrance for
The cultural approach of consensus decision-making is found in all areas of an organization. If you ask a clerk at a Japanese store a question about whether a product will serve a particular need, you will likely see two clerks huddle together to discuss the issue, reach a consensus, and then announce the conclusion to answer your question. Ringisei is a common practice of workers within Japanese cultures at all levels of the management structure.
The codetermination system is based
in law. The legal system of codetermination is primarily a German and Swedish system. It is not quite like having union representation, but it does require a company, by law, to allow employees to be part of the decision-making system. Having employees sit on the corporate board seems like a good idea, but this would be a rare thing for American corporations.
The board of directors at an American corporation is almost exclusively made up of the company’s executives and corporate insiders. Often, the executives and corporate insiders are hand-picked for their qualifications and loyalty to the chief executive officer (CEO). Should the stockholders be allowed to vote on executive compensation, or should that be a board decision? The shareholders can vote on who serves on the board, but political factors are usually involved. The point is that an American culture may not be likely to adopt immediate and significant changes toward decision making. The same idea can be argued for the case of Japanese cultures and the decision-making practice they are accustomed to performing. The decision to implement such a change, like any decision, should be carefully evaluated. Always inquire about the return on investment (ROI). Is it worth the change, and will it contribute to the performance (i.e., financial, quality, or personnel) of the organization?
The codetermination system would likely be welcomed and embraced by shareholder activists, but should it become
the law in America to include a seat or two on a publicly traded corporation’s board for non-management employees? And is that even a good thing? Is there a compromise type of system that would require directors to be independent of executives that does not have to be legislated into action?
The idea of codetermination may have roots in diversity. Many countries require females to be on the board of publically held corporations. In 2005, Norway (i.e.,
the law) has since required 40% of corporate boards to consist of women. By 2015, France plans to implement a law that requires 50% of corporate boards to consist of women. In 2007, Spain passed a similar law. Great Britain and Germany are debating the following question: Should governments require quotas for women to serve on corporate boards or should the market drive the appointment?
These laws could lead to term limits for a board member, as well as a board defined by job classification (i.e., workers and management). Once a can of worms has been opened, where do you draw the line? Who needs a union if workers are represented this way? Codetermination does not have to be only about labor/worker representation or rights. On the other hand, codetermination does appear to be the main focus. All policies and strategies that would be discussed in the normal course of board business could be open to the decision-BBA 4426, International Management 3
Start with a goal and create a list of interview questions. Be prepared to present the details of codetermination with examples. Also, be prepared to share your own perspective about codetermination (i.e., Do you believe it can be effective? Why?). This interview could lead into a great conversation, which could lead to a job opportunity. At the very least, you will build your professional network.
Since American management is deeply imbedded in the culture that leaders make the decisions, your fellow board members and executive management may not be open to the idea of codetermination or a ringisei system of decision making.
Most of this course is about making effective managerial decisions by analyzing all of the relevant and available information. It is not easy, by any means, to make decisions as an international manager, and you now have the skills to make those informed decisions. International relations and international entrepreneurship presents challenges simply from cultural differences and how those cultural differences affect an organization. With the tools, resources, and strategies offered by this course, you have the skills to be an effective international manager or an entrepreneur with international options. Let this course or program become more than the education you earned. Let it be the beginning of your commitment as a lifelong learner toward international management, multinational organizations, and globalization. Take these skills and continue to improve them for yourself and the industry. Be an innovator and a leader in the industry.
Luthans, F., & Doh, J. P. (2012).
International management: Culture, strategy, and behavior (8th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.
course textbook used
Luthans, F., & Doh, J. P. (2012).
International management: Culture, strategy, and behavior (8th ed.).
New York, NY: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.
the attachments are chapter 11
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