Comparison of Work-Life-Balance in Danish and Japanese Culture. Influencing factors, differences and possible similarities of a fundamental cultural understanding


Seminar Paper, 2017
18 Pages, Grade: 1,7

Excerpt

II
Table of Contents
List of Abbreviations ...III
List of Figures... IV
Figure 1: Country Comparison: Denmark versus Japan ... IV
1.
Introduction ...- 1 -
2.
Theoretical Background ...- 1 -
2.1.
Definition Work-Life-Balance ...- 1 -
2.2.
Dimensions of Culture by Geert Hofstede ...- 2 -
3.
Analysis of Culture...- 4 -
3.1.
Danish Culture ...- 4 -
3.2.
Japanese Culture ...- 5 -
4.
Comparison of Danish and Japanese Culture ...- 7 -
5.
Applied Learning: Different Cultures dealing with Work-Life-Balance ...- 8 -
6.
Conclusion and Outlook ...- 10 -
Bibliography ... IV
Online Sources...V

III
List of Abbreviations
Cf.
confer (Latin) = compare
BMFSFJ
Bundesministerium für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend
f.
following
ibid.
ibidem (Latin) = the same
IDV
Individualism versus Collectivism
IND
Indulgence versus Restraint
LTO
Long-Term Orientation versus Short-Term-Orientation
MAS
Masculinity versus Femininity
OECD
Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development
p.
Page
PDI
Power Distance Index
WLB
Work-Life-Balance
w.p.
Without page
w.y.
Without year

IV
List of Figures
Figure 1: Country Comparison: Denmark versus Japan
Source: Following Hofstede Insights, Comparison, w.y., w.p.
18
74
16
23
35
70
54
46
95
92
88
42
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
Power Distance
Individualism
Masculinity
Uncertainty
Avoidance
Long Term
Orientation
Indulgence
Denmark
Japan
(left)
(right)

- 1 -
1. Introduction
Due to technologisation and globalisation, the demographic development and an ever-faster
growing global competition, there have been a lot changes of values within working
cultures worldwide
1
. Especially modern working world demands on employees are placed
in a different light. Long working hours, additional overtime and the need of permanent
availability are taking an ever-increasing amount of many employee's time. The own time
management is becoming a balancing act between professional and private life and for
employees it is a major challenge to find the right balance
2
.
Based on this, the countries Denmark and Japan are analysed and compared afterwards due
to some selected factors of the cultural model of Geert Hofstede in this term paper having
special focus on the country-specific Work-Life-Balance and its influencing factors to point
out differences and possible similarities of a fundamental cultural understanding. Therefore,
chapter two provides a definition of the term Work-Life-Balance (short: WLB) and a
theoretical introduction of two dimensions of the cultural theory of Geert Hofstede.
Following, the countries Denmark and Japan are analysed individually at first and
compared with each other afterwards in chapter four. Finally, the concept of WLB is
applied to the cultural comparison to provide possible recommendations for improvements
regarding the differences in cultural understandings. Finally, the term paper is rounded off
with a conclusion and outlook.
2. Theoretical Background
2.1. Definition Work-Life-Balance
Regarding the relatively short presence of the term Work-Life-Balance as a functional
concept, there is no unique definition existing in science
3
. But over time, a comprehensive
understanding of the term has been developed and it is understood as a balanced
1
Cf. Kirschten, U., Challenges, 2014, p. 29 f.
2
Cf. ibid., p. 17.
3
Cf. Michalk, S., Nieder, P., Work-Life-Balance, 2007, p. 17.

- 2 -
relationship between professional and private life of every human being
4
. The German
"Bundesministerium für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend" (short: BMFSFJ) defines
WLB as a new and intelligent interlocking of professional and private life against the
background of a changed and dynamically changing working and living environment
5
. The
term balance relates to the actual objective distribution of time as well as to subjective
preferences and priorities
6
of individuals. It is often referred to a picture of a scale
7
to
emphasise the need of equilibrium between stressful and relaxing activities in the
professional as well as private life
8
. Because a proper balance is important for every
individual to stay healthy, compensated and overall happy
9
.
2.2. Dimensions of Culture by Geert Hofstede
In today's world, Geert Hofstede's six dimensions of culture are well known. The expert of
cultural studies was born in Haarlem, the Netherlands, in 1928. He graduated as a
mechanical engineer at first and worked in this field for 12 years. Afterwards, Hofstede
studied social psychology at Groningen University and completed a doctorate degree in
1967
10
. Through the following years, he developed the theory of cultural dimensions in
which each dimension contains specific aspects to compare countries relatively due to some
cultural phenomena with each other
11
. The initial four dimensions were: Power Distance
Index (PDI), Individualism versus Collectivism (IDV), Masculinity versus Femininity
(MAS) and Uncertainty Avoidance Index (UAI)
12
. In 1991, the fifth-dimension Long-Term
Orientation versus Short-Term Orientation (LTO) was added
13
. Those five cultural
dimensions have been reflected and adapted by Michael Minkov, so that the sixth one was
added in 2010: Indulgence versus Restraint (IND)
14
.
4
Cf. ibid., p. 21.
5
Cf. BMFSFJ, Social Stability, 2005, p. 15f.
6
Cf. Michalk, S., Nieder, P., Work-Life-Balance, 2007, p. 21.
7
Cf. ibid., p. 21.
8
Cf. Blahopoulou, J., Measures, 2012, p. 14.
9
Cf. Michalk, S., Nieder, P., Work-Life-Balance, 2007, p. 21.
10
Cf. Hofstede, G., Biography, w.y, w.p.
11
Cf. Hofstede, G., Hofstede, G. J., Minkov, M., Cultures, 2010, p. 31.
12
Cf. Hofstede Insights, National Culture, w.y., w.p.
13
Cf. Hofstede, G., Hofstede, G. J., Minkov, M., Cultures, 2010, p. 239f.
14
Cf. Rothlauf, J., Intercultural Management, 2012, p. 43 f.
Excerpt out of 18 pages

Details

Title
Comparison of Work-Life-Balance in Danish and Japanese Culture. Influencing factors, differences and possible similarities of a fundamental cultural understanding
College
University of Applied Sciences Essen
Course
Intercultural Competencies
Grade
1,7
Author
Year
2017
Pages
18
Catalog Number
V388178
ISBN (eBook)
9783668623149
ISBN (Book)
9783668623156
File size
587 KB
Language
English
Tags
comparison, work-life-balance, danish, japanese, culture, influencing
Quote paper
Nicola Gamerad (Author), 2017, Comparison of Work-Life-Balance in Danish and Japanese Culture. Influencing factors, differences and possible similarities of a fundamental cultural understanding, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/388178

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