FOOD FOR THOUGHT – 27TH AUGUST 2020

THE NUGGET
A Fish is not aware that it is in water, neither are humans aware that they live in a culture.

EAT- IN
It is very easy for us to forget our culture, yet we are all members of a society with culture that shapes the way we do things. This is why we are shocked when we step out of our culture an in contact with another we find that people do things differently.
For the purpose of today’s thought, culture is defined as over-riding system of values, beliefs, norms, artifact, and symbols that have been developed by a society and shared by its members.
Each member of a society develops ways of coping with his environment and tries to make sense out of it. The enduring nature of cultural values tend to become systematized and are transmitted to the following generations. The effects of culture on organizational development and productivity is undoubted.
There are cultures of poverty, production, aggression and independence. In different societies, or even within one country there may be a group of people whose cultures do not encourage independence or hardwork. Some cultures make people passive, while some cultures make others aggressive/assertive.
The people that suffer from the direct effects of culture on employees are the managers. A manager is expected to get things done through people. How does he do this if his staff are culture passive and unproductive? Managers are worse off in a culture which people’s aggressive behaviours are uncontrollable. What managers have in these circumstance are a bunch of human beings bogged down by culture values that hinders the work of the managers.
If your staff are not productive, examine first their culture values. Were they taught early in life the joy and pride of “sweat” and “achievement” if they did not have encouragement to work hard as part of the culture, they are likely to hate the manager whose culture values hardwork. This can be the other way round.
What managers need to bear in mind is that a person’s inefficiency or aggressive attitude in the work place goes beyond that person. It may be ingrained in social fabric of his culture development. To improve workers efficiency, we must first understand their cultural background and adjust the person’s mind and behavior.

TAKE-AWAY
One’s place in the world depends in part on what he has been able to affirm, maintain and defend.

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