International HRM could be defined as..
'the HRM strategies, policies and practices which firms pursue in response to the internationalization of business.'
From the perspective of the HR practioner, the internationalisation of business has had the effect of adding new responsibilities, and also creating new levels of complexity and challenge.
As far as IHRM is concerned, the most important aspects of globalization are..
- Global production
- Global organisation
The following represent situations that are related to the growth of TNC and a converging global economic system..
- More people are working for TNCs in a HR capacity
- UK based organisations are employing more people from diverse backgrounds (due to inward migration etc)
- HR professionals are developing new approaches to individual & organisational learning
- HR professionals in global organisations are also developing ways of communicating with people in different parts of the world
The 4 dimensions of the IHRM's role and contribution..
- International transactions and administration
- Building capability and resource development
- Business-driven activities
- Developing and implementing strategy
The international HR manager and culture:
National cultures are important because they help people to understand..
- What they are and how they fit into society
- How they relate to each other
- What social conventions are important and why
- How they perceive work and what it means in the broader context of their lives
Cultural sensitivity and the ability to manage in situations of cultural differences, and indeed of cultural conflict, consequently becomes an important requirement for the manager with international HR responsibilities.
Hofstede found that nationality affected many cultural assumptions and business practices, with the key cultural differences being explained by the following 5 variables...
- Power distance - (accepting unequal power distribution)
- Individualism - (identifying themselves as members of a social group)
- Masculinity/femininity - (distribution of roles and relationships between genders)
- Uncertainty avoidance - (tolerance for uncertainty and ambiguity)
- Long-term vs Short-term orientation - (the importance of the future)
The 4 stages of culture shock -
1) Honeymoon phase
2) The distress phase
3) The 'autonomy and independence' phase
4) The 'reverse culture shock' phase