Susan is a highly productive employee but is absent more often than her co-workers. She has decided to take a me-day because she believes that her absence will not affect her overall productivity.
Legitimate reason to be out of the office, or punishable offence? Depending on where “Susan” lives, it can be either shows new research from Concordia University’s John Molson School of Business.
According to a study recently published in Cross Cultural Management, there are considerable differences in attitudes towards workplace absences across nations. Analysis of responses from 1,535 participants in Mexico, Pakistan, Ghana, India, the USA, Canada, Japan, Trinidad and Nigeria proves that such absenteeism is more influenced by cultural stance than individual attitude.
Management professor Gary Johns was the senior researcher in this study. He explains that, “in light of globalization and increased interest in cross-cultural understanding of employees’ attitudes, perceptions and behaviour, we set out to investigate employees’ perceptions of the legitimacy of absenteeism from a cross-national perspective.”
Overall the researchers found that respondents from Pakistan, India and Trinidad believed absenteeism most acceptable, while those from the USA, Ghana and Japan believed it to be least acceptable. Respondents from Canada Mexico and Nigeria were somewhere in the middle.
At the extreme end of the spectrum, Japanese respondents were least accepting of absence in the abstract but were also the least likely to hold absentees accountable for being away from work. They were also especially forgiving of specific cases of absence as recounted in the scenarios.
What does this mean in practical terms? The study’s lead author Helena Addae explains: “Organizations that attempt to develop corporate-wide attendance policies spanning national borders should take local norms and expectations concerning absenteeism into consideration.
“What’s normal for offices in Pakistan will not be the same for those in the USA. Therefore, companies need to be culturally sensitive in establishing rules surrounding taking time off.” Addae, who is now an associate professor at University of Wisconsin Whitewater, completed the study as part of her doctoral research at Concordia.
About the research: This study was supported in part by grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.
Clea Desjardins | EurekAlert!
Researchers simplify tiny structures' construction drip by drip
12.11.2018 | Princeton University, Engineering School
Mandibular movement monitoring may help improve oral sleep apnea devices
06.11.2018 | Elsevier
Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.
Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...
Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.
In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...
On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.
When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure
Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...
Physicists at ETH Zurich demonstrate how errors that occur during the manipulation of quantum system can be monitored and corrected on the fly
The field of quantum computation has seen tremendous progress in recent years. Bit by bit, quantum devices start to challenge conventional computers, at least...
09.11.2018 | Event News
06.11.2018 | Event News
23.10.2018 | Event News
13.11.2018 | Life Sciences
13.11.2018 | Life Sciences
13.11.2018 | Awards Funding