Critical Essay on Canadian Work Place Conflict

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Business has evolved globally in the recent past. Therefore, there has been a demanding role of embracing and spreading the importance of operating in a value-based business platform. The success of any enterprise is mostly determined by its ability to understand and respect the cultures of the community they operate within. Nonetheless, workplace conflicts have remained redundant in most working stations that are situated in culturally diverse communities. Conflicts are inevitable in any healthy human relationship. However, the most eminent reason for workplace conflicts arises from differing perspectives and incompatible concerns that are seemingly unavoidable. Several explanations attribute for the source of workplace disputes. However, the most critical approach is basing concerns on theories pertaining masculinity/femininity, high/low context communication, and value Orientations.

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Masculinity/Femininity as a Cultural Theory

Masculinity versus femininity is a cultural theory that refers to the distribution of roles in society by gender. Thankfully, this perspective acts as a fundamental issue where most gender-based conflicts are resolved. Concisely the values of women are taken lightly unlike those of their male counterparts. Men are rated by assertiveness, competitiveness, materialism, power, self-centeredness, individual achievements and strength. On the other hand, women exhibit conventional trains of modesty, supportiveness, and care. Due to these cultural notions of observing what men and women can do in most case, women are progressively discouraged from working in gender-inauthentic occupations. Nevertheless, in particular, settings cultural practices and behavior are widely recognized as masculine or feminine irrespective of whether women or men are adopting them (Stets & Burke, 2013). This kind of approach, therefore, refutes that sexual orientation should define femininity and masculinity. Notably, every society reacts differently to an audience in a business approach. Therefore, for any business to succeed, they have to formulate communicable ways of addressing their clients in either a masculine or feminine manner. Moreover, masculinity and femininity can be learned. Moreover, messages on how people should behave in gender confirmed behavior are portrayed in the media, advertising, news, and educational materials.

High and Low Context Communication

High and low context communication theory explains that people and businesses should rely more on things other than the word to adequately convey meaning. In every culture, its members have specific filters that allow them to focus entirely on what their society deems as necessary. Therefore, cultures that portray low-context communication mostly pay a lot of attention to the literal meaning of words than the context encompassing them. Importantly every individual applies both high and low settings in communication. Therefore, it is impossible to choose one over the other. This translates that our relationship with each other and circumstances is the standard dictator of the extents to which people either rely more on literal or implied meanings. High context cultures are found in countries where the racial diversity is quite small (Salleh, 2015). Therefore, group reliance is more legitimate. These cultures have strong traditions, and history thus changing minimally over time. On the other hand, an individual from low context cultures expects smaller and tightly knitted groups, especially where there is an interrelationship between their personal and professional life. Therefore, these individuals are prone to ask more questions instead of working out an issue more independently.

Value Orientations

Value orientations are a diagnostic way of dealing with cultural differences in organizations, increase employee awareness of cultural diversity. Value orientations classify human concerns in five distinctive ways the human nature, time sense, man-nature relationship, activity, and social relations. Each concern is responded in three different ways according to cultures either in the present, past or the future. Human nature orientation expects that people should understand that humanity characterizes individuals as either good or evil. Despite their differences, with the right guidance and approach people can change for the better (Esuli & Sebastiani, 2014). Thus agreeing that good people will always be that way they never change. Man-nature relationship explains that nature cannot be altered and external forces ranging from fate and genetics determine that life. Therefore, it is only appropriate for a man to live in harmony with nature because what was meant to happen will happen. In addition, others expect people to try to change life for their sake.

The sense of time orientation argues that people should learn from history and draw values from it. Moreover, people should make plans and set goals that help them accomplish their purposes that lead to change and growth (Esuli & Sebastiani, 2014). However, cultures that relate to the present acknowledge that people should enjoy the present and forget about tomorrow. The activity approach tries to define the best way to undertake an action. Activity translates to either an individuals inner development or applying for hard work in all undertakings thus accomplishing set goals that are awarded for producing worthwhile results. Other cultures translate that there is no necessity of accomplishing great things being themselves is enough. Lastly, is the social relations concept which is characterized by leaders being in charge, collective decision making, and giving equal rights to each person for them to make a personal decision and thus controlling their destinies.

Our group is classified undervalue orientation considering that most people from the Canadian background are focused, future-oriented, aspire to dominate over nature, emphasize on individualism, and believe that humanity is mixed people are either bad or good. However, Panamas culture is native. The other workers from Panama are past oriented, aspire to live harmoniously with nature, are focused on their beings, believe that people are good, and emphasize the need to have collateral group relations. For instance, Panamanians have good morals they consider that helping others is good. They believe that the family unit is the central unit of society. The older family members always assist in raising children and, in turn, their children care for them in their old days. Therefore, working is not very important at the expense of their children (Hofstede, 2011). Moreover, Panamanians believe that people should be good, tolerate each other, and avoid embarrassing each other they think it is important to save face. Moreover, Panamanians are more relaxed people. They believe that there is always time for anything. Being prompt is not a priority, and actually, punctuality is not very necessary. They prefer to arrive at their destinations safely than rushing because they believe that it is natural for them to arrive wherever they are going. The sense of time in Panama is not very considered especially in cases of formal schedules Panamanians are frequently pushed to acknowledge its importance.


In such a case from a Canadian perspective, conflicts will always arise because their value orientations are significantly different from their Panamanian counterparts. Canadians work on a schedule and are inclined to keep time whenever they have appointments. Moreover, they work long hours and are always ready to adjust to new working requirements. Therefore, their work is their priority with each having a different responsibility of ensuring that they complete their tasks efficiently and promptly because it contributes to the success of a team. Canadians do not believe that all people are good so on several occasions one is expected to produce a police record.


Stets, J. E., & Burke, P. J. (2013). Femininity/masculinity. Encyclopedia of Sociology, 997-1005.Salleh, L. M. (2015, October). High/low context communication: The Malaysian Malay style. In

Proceedings of the 2005 Association for Business Communication Annual Convention (pp. 1-11). Irvine, CA: Association for Business Communication.Esuli, A., & Sebastiani, F. (2014, October). Determining the semantic orientation of terms

through gloss classification. In Proceedings of the 14th ACM international conference on Information and knowledge management (pp. 617-624). ACM.Hofstede, G. (2011). The cultural relativity of organizational practices and theories. Journal of international business studies, 75-89.

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