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THE ROLE OF CULTURE ON ENTREPRENEURSHIP DEVELOPMENT IN SAUDI ARABIA: Entrepreneurial Cultural Dimensions

Previous researchers suggested ideal scores of cultural dimensions that facilitate entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurial behavior should involve high individualism and low in power distance, uncertainty avoidance, masculinity values and long-term orientation. In Saudi Arabia, as reported by Cassell and Blake, the cultural dimension score on individualism is 38 indicating a low individualism culture and suggesting collectivistic society. As a collectivistic society, building a relationship and trust with others are important. However, in entrepreneurial culture, one needs to be independent in thinking and initiate ideas and let the group to only be supportive or not.
The second dimension discussed is the power distance culture. Saudi Arabia’s power distance ranking is 80 indicating a high power distance in the society. It shows that there is a high level of inequality of the wealth and power within the society. In Saudi Arabia, there is a wide gap between management and employees. This results in limited information sharing among workers and managers. In entrepreneurial culture, on the other hand, the power distance should be low to allow better spread of information. Other than that, high power distance restricted the connection of different ideas.
Following that is the uncertainty avoidance dimension where Saudi Arabia is ranked at 68 indicating uncertainty avoidance. This means that Saudis have a low level of tolerance for ambiguity. Entrepreneurship culture must adopt low uncertainty avoidance, which means willingness to take risks and less fear of failure. In entrepreneurial innovation, there are lots of risks to be taken and less fear is permissible. That is why low uncertainty avoidance culture is positively related to innovation rates.
In terms of masculinity versus femininity dimension, Saudi Arabia’s ranking is 52 indicating more masculine values in the society. Masculinity include self-assertiveness and career-focused whereas femininity values involves tolerance, modesty, unity and carefulness. Although masculine cultures were found to give no impact on entrepreneurship and innovation, culture with a high femininity (or low masculinity) is more positively related to entrepreneurial culture. Feminine values encourage more trusts among employees that reduce uncertainty to initiate and share new ideas.
Finally, the long-term orientation score in Saudi Arabia is not mentioned anywhere in previous studies including by Hofstede himself. However, it was mentioned that in a low ranking long-term orientation (indicating short-term orientation culture) there is freedom from long-term traditional commitments. Therefore, short-term orientation society would have greater flexibility and is able to react to new opportunities quickly. This shows that short-term orientation society could grab an opportunity faster than those with obligation to tradition and other rules. Besides that, since long-term orientation society is bound to respect for tradition, business in the society may develop slowly (International Business Center, n.d). no credit check payday loans

This post was written by , posted on April 26, 2014 Saturday at 7:48 pm