Organisational Change Management Volume 1

Some More Characteristics of Australian Culture

{product-noshow 16|name|cart|picture|link|border|menuid:206|pricedis3|pricetax1}

Some more characteristics of Australian culture are

Prefer strong but not hard leaders

Like consistent leaders

Prefer slow, incremental change

Prefer pattern and order, and are uncomfortable with crisis and chaos

Workplace relationships are more important than self-improvement

Reluctant to confront poor performance

Hypersensitive to hypocrisy and cant

Never forgive a tyrant

Slow to anger

(sources: Des Mueller, 2002; Bernard Salt, 2003)

Furthermore, some paradoxes prevail in the Australian culture:

Understanding the power distance of authority, ie want to be mates but organisational structure is very hierarchical/authoritarian

Believe that they can eliminate uncertainty but have problems handling it

Tend be more short-term focused in orientation for the future, ie cost cutting and re-organising but claim to be long-term focused

Claim to be egalitarian, ie "mateship" which is a "male thing", but are nervous about gender and ethnic issues

Applaud success, especially in sport, but suffer from the "tall poppy syndrome", ie like to pull successful and high profile people "back to the pack"

"Cultural cringe", ie a deference to "all things overseas" - especially from America, European and Japan. This attitude is based on the assumption that "over there" is better than "back here" as culture/industry/organisations, etc in America, Europe and Japan are better as those markets/places are bigger, older and more sophisticated. However, cultural cringe may be less of an attitudinal problem than it was decades ago.

Sports-mad with the idea that cultural work is not real work, yet 1 in 6 Australians are involved in cultural activities, mostly writing, design and visual arts

Renowned for its scientific and creative discoveries but tardy about capitalizing on them, ie better to export talent like actors than to make films

Multicultural society but mono-lingual, i.e. people from over 140 different ethnic groups (and several 100 different Indigenous tribal languages) but one dominant language, i.e. English.

(sources: Karen Morley, 2002; Bernard Salt, 2003; Dierdre Macken, 2006a)

Search For Answers

designed by: bluetinweb

We use cookies to provide you with a better service.
By continuing to use our site, you are agreeing to the use of cookies as set in our policy. I understand