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P&G One Asia Serial Innovator Talent development


The Hofstede model of national culture consists of six dimensions. The cultural dimensions represent independent preferences for one state of affairs over another that distinguish countries (rather than individuals) from each other.

The country scores on the dimensions are relative in that we are all human and simultaneously we are all unique. In other words, culture can only be used meaningfully by comparison. The model consists of the following dimensions:


This dimension expresses the degree to which the less powerful members of a society accept and expect that power is distributed unequally. The fundamental issue here is how a society handles inequalities among people.
People in societies exhibiting a significant degree of Power Distance accept a hierarchical order in which everybody has a place and needs no further justification. In societies with low Power Distance, people strive to equalize power distribution and demand justification for power inequalities.

The high side of this dimension, called Individualism, can be defined as a preference for a loosely-knit social framework in which individuals are expected to take care of only themselves and their immediate families.
Its opposite, Collectivism, represents a preference for a tightly-knit framework in society in which individuals can expect their relatives or members of a particular ingroup to look after them in exchange for unquestioning loyalty. A society’s position on this dimension is reflected in whether people’s self-image is defined in terms of “I” or “we.”

The Masculinity side of this dimension represents a preference in society for achievement, heroism, assertiveness, and material rewards for success. Society at large is more competitive. Its opposite, Femininity, stands for a preference for cooperation, modesty, caring for the weak and quality of life. Society at large is more consensus-oriented.
In the business context Masculinity versus Femininity is sometimes also related to as “tough versus tender” cultures.

The Uncertainty Avoidance dimension expresses the degree to which the members of a society feel uncomfortable with uncertainty and ambiguity. The fundamental issue here is how a society deals with the fact that the future can never be known: should we try to control it or just let it happen?
Countries exhibiting strong UAI maintain rigid codes of belief and behavior and are intolerant of unorthodox behavior and ideas. Weak UAI societies maintain a more relaxed attitude in which practice counts more than principles.


Every society has to maintain some links with its past while dealing with the present and future challenges. Societies prioritize these two existential goals differently.
For example, societies that score low on this dimension prefer to maintain time-honored traditions and norms while viewing societal change with suspicion.
In the business context, this dimension is referred to as “(short-term) normative versus (long-term) pragmatic” (PRA). The terminology Monumentalism versus Flexhumility is sometimes also used in the academic environment.

Indulgence stands for a society that allows relatively free gratification of essential and natural human drives related to enjoying life and having fun. Restraint stands for a society that suppresses gratification of needs and regulates it using strict social norms.

Sample Reports

Exercise: Multi-Cultural Dimension Challenges in Innovation Teams

Objective: This exercise aims to explore and understand the challenges that can arise in innovation teams of members from three different nationalities. 

The exercise utilizes the Hofstede Culture Comparison Tool and the six dimensions of national culture to analyze potential cultural differences and their impact on teamwork and innovation.


  • Participant Selection: Select one volunteer participant to act as the presenter. This participant will lead the discussion and presentation on cultural dimension challenges.

  • Preparation:

    • The presenter should use the Hofstede Culture Comparison Tool ( to compare the cultural dimensions of three different countries. These countries will represent the nationalities of the innovation team members.

    • Choose countries known for their distinct cultural characteristics to ensure a meaningful discussion.

  • Presentation: The volunteer delivers a presentation on the challenges faced by an innovation team comprising members from these three nationalities. 

    The presentation should cover the following points:

    • Introduction of the three selected countries and their cultural dimensions based on the Hofstede model.

    • Explanation of how each cultural dimension can impact communication, decision-making, and teamwork within the innovation team.

    • Real or hypothetical scenarios illustrate the challenges that may arise due to cultural differences in the team.

    • Insights into strategies or best practices that can help overcome these challenges and promote effective collaboration.

  • Comments and Discussion: Open the floor for comments and discussion after the presentation. Other volunteers, representing diverse nationalities, can provide their insights and perspectives on the challenges presented.

    • Participants can discuss their personal experiences or observations of working in multicultural teams.

    • Encourage volunteers to share strategies or solutions they have used to address cultural differences and enhance team dynamics.

  • Q&A Session: Allow for a question-and-answer session where participants can seek clarifications and further insights from the presenter.

  • Reflection: Conclude the exercise with a reflection period where participants summarize key takeaways and lessons learned regarding the challenges and opportunities of multicultural innovation teams.


  • Cultural Awareness: This exercise promotes cultural awareness by highlighting the impact of cultural dimensions on teamwork and innovation.

  • Problem-Solving: Participants can engage in problem-solving discussions to address challenges arising from cultural differences.

  • Diverse Perspectives: It encourages the exchange of diverse perspectives and experiences, enriching the understanding of cultural dynamics.

  • Practical Insights: Participants can gain practical insights into managing multicultural teams effectively.

By analyzing the challenges faced by innovation teams with diverse cultural backgrounds, this exercise fosters cultural competence and equips volunteers with valuable skills for collaborating in a globalized world.