Impact of National Culture on the Organization of Work in Japan and India

Impact of National Culture on the Organization of Work in Japan and India

National culture refers to the general behaviors that characterize the citizens of a given country. For instance, the national behavior will make to conclude that Nigerians are thieves. This comes from the general behaviors and traits shared by the citizens of that particular country. Such behaviors and traits that constitute National culture usually arise from situations that face a country and the passage from one generation to the other (Kłoskowska, 2001, pp. 115).

Corruption is an important aspect that cannot just be wished away when it comes to the development of work plans. Corruption levels in Japan are far much lower than in Japan. This is mostly credited on the use of high-level technology in Japan that rules out room for corruption and embezzlement of funds. India is still a developing country that has not taken up the new technologies to a level that corruption can be well fought. The fact that most Indians think from an individualistic perspective makes fighting corruption a difficult task to deal with. This has forced organizations to employ more personnel that undertake supervision to avert or reduce the corrupt activities in the work places (Chen, 2006, pp. 70). This is not so with the Japanese who have developed a culture of sincerity and have reduced levels of corruption. Most Japanese believe in getting wealth the right way, which is not the case with most Indians.

The Just in Time (JIT) philosophy and the work concept taken by the Japanese is a culture that most countries in the world wish to emulate. Just after the First World War, Japan discovered the need to fast track on the building of the economy and the rehabilitation of the destroyed property. The bombing of Nagasaki and Hiroshima made many Japanese to find the need to fight with time and get the economy back on track. They came up with the Just in Time (JIT) policy in bid to achieve this. The Japanese are very time conscious and cannot be compared to the Indians. The Indians work for fewer hours than the Japanese do. While the Japanese work for an average of fourteen hours a day as the Indians work on an average of 12 hours. This has made the Japanese to fix time schedules on assignments always as opposed to the Indians who are more flexible with time. It is likely to find an appointment with Japanese being done in the right time than it is with the Indians. Because of this, the Japanese concentrate more on work schedules and plans than the Indians do.

Japanese people tend to be more inclined to consensus building than the Indians are. The Indians provide for solitary decision-making by those in authority. This can also be explained based on the discriminative Karst system. The consensus building decision-making has shaped the organization of work in Japan, as they all seem to be working in unity, as they are in agreement with whatever they are doing and in the manner that it is being done. This is contrary to the Indian situation where most people believe in being followers of a given authority. While this can be positive as allows for order in the working, it can easily turn out to be dangerous when those in authority make wrong decisions. Discontentment in the work places in India may not have room for being expressed hence the unity of purpose lacks.

The environment surrounding a country can be a great contributor to the national culture of the same country. Japan has a culture of swift action due to the many earthquakes and disasters they face. These disasters dictate that they always are prepared for anything that can happen. This has led to innovation and developing of houses that can be swung by the quakes but will remain standing. This is not so with the populous India, which is not prone to natural disasters.

There is more restriction on the flows of information in India. This is not the case in Japan where information is easily dispersed. The dispersal or the confidentiality of information in both Japan and India has a great impact on the organization of work in these two countries. Having a limited dispersion of information in India has been a factor in creating a system that has workers that cannot multi-task or work in different departments. This is not so with the Japanese work places where knowledge and information is widely shared, creating a more informed worker. This helps in creating a sustainable system, as there is no vacuum left when other old workers retire. The information flow in the work system of the Japanese have made them to have less supervision as quality is assured as opposed to India where the informed managers must ensure there is a close supervision for quality to be assured (Kobrak, 2002, pp. 237).

There is collective loyalty transferred to the organization in Japan. This is not so with India where collective loyalty is transferred to external units that is mainly the families. An Indian would rather have his or her son for instance getting good education even if it means embezzling money from the organization. This is not so with the Japanese who other than observing integrity, they will also think about the organization before taking a decision.

Japanese people are very industrious and are in fact after the Israelites rated as the most industrious people in the world. Japanese people can work for longer hours than the Indians work and still ensure that the quality of their work is up to task. The Indians are more or else people that are guided by supervision. The quality of work of Indians without thorough supervision is usually reduced. They are more self-centered than being concerned about an organization. They tend to have a slaved mind that does not allow them to work independently (Kłoskowska, 2001, pp. 121).

The primary motives of employees are key criteria in the classification of national cultures. Indians approach work from a personal perspective as opposed to the Japanese who look at the organization as their own communities. Given equal chances to make decisions in the organization, the Indians are more likely to make decisions that benefit self while the Japanese are likely to make those decisions that may benefit them but will always work well for the benefit of the organization (Kobrak, 2002, pp. 239). The Indians are more inclined to how they will benefit and the organization comes second. The organization is only considered since they have no option to do so. Japanese people have the culture of wanting to serve. As such, personal interests come after those of the group or organization.

The Western culture is however quite different from the culture of the Asian countries such as the Japan and India. The Western culture presents a society of people that are very innovative to the level that they always think harder and provide solutions to the problems that face them. The Western national cultures tend to be dynamic in that they change with time. The national cultures of countries such as the United States and Canada tend to change and incorporate other aspects that were non-existent, which is not so with the Asian cultures (Chen, 2006, pp. 84).

National cultures have had great impacts on the organization of work. The Japanese with the Just in Time policy have been enabled to have a better work organization. This has given them an upper hand from the countries in the world, as they can be able to facilitate unity of purpose. The pride of serving and ensuring two-way success between the organization and the worker has resulted in reduced supervision. The sharing of information freely within the organization has resulted in multi-tasking personnel, which is useful in the times of crisis. The Just in Time culture has enabled the Japanese to utilize timed facilities such as the electric trains in the country.


CHEN, Y.-R. (2006). National culture and groups. Amsterdam, Elsevier JAI.

KŁOSKOWSKA, A. (2001). National cultures at the grass-root level. Budapest, Hungary, Central European University Press.

KOBRAK, C. (2009). National cultures and international competition: the experience of Schering AG, 1851-1950. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

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