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Q.1 Write a note on specific Vs diffused Culture


Specific Vs Diffused Culture
A specific culture is one in which individuals have a large public space they readily let other enter and share and a small private space they guard closely and share with only close friends and associates. A diffuse culture is one in which both public and private space are similar in size and individuals guard their public space carefully, because entry into public space affords entry into private space as well. Austria, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Switzerland all are specific cultures, while Venezuela, China and Spain are diffuse cultures.

In specific cultures, people often are invited into a person’s open, public space; individuals in these cultures often are open and extroverted and there is a strong separation of work and private life. In diffuse cultures, people are not quickly invited into a person’s open, public space, because once they are in, there is easy entry into the private space as well. Individuals in these cultures often appear to be indirect and introverted and work and private life often are closely linked. An example of these specific and diffuse cultural dimensions is provided by the United States and Germany. A U.S. Professor, such as Robert Smith, Ph.D., generally would be called Dr. Smith by students when at his U.S. University. When shopping, however, he might be referred to by the store clerk as Bob and he might even ask the clerk’s advice regarding some of his intended purchases. When golfing, Bob might just be one of the guys, even to a golf partner who happens to be a graduate student in his department. The reason for these changes in status is that, with the specific U.S. cultural values, people have large public spaces and often conduct themselves differently depending on their public role. At the same time, however, Bob has private space that is off-limits to the students who must call him Doctor in class. In high diffuse cultures, on the other hand, a person’s public and private life often are similar. Therefore, in Germany, Herr Professor Doktor Schmidt would be referred to this way at the university, local market, and bowling alley and even his wife might address him formally in public. A great deal of formality is maintained, often giving the impression that Germans are stuffy or aloof. Trompenaars recommends that when those from specific cultures do business in diffuse cultures, they should respect a person’s title, age, and background connections, and they should not get impatient when people are being indirect or circuitous. Conversely, when individuals from diffuse cultures do business in specific cultures, they should try to get to the point and be efficient, learn to structure meetings with the judicious use of agendas and not use their titles or acknowledge achievements or skills.

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