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As English has widely spread around the world as international language and the workplaces in different countries has more similarities as a result of globalization, research on comparison in different workplace around the world becomes practical. This analysis will mainly focus on four issues in workplaces in China which represents non-English speaking countries and New Zealand which stands for English speaking countries.
The four issues are marketing and sponsorship, changes in the workplace, human resource policies, and organizational culture. Marketing is an act of process of selling and purchasing in a market (Wikipedia, 2010) and sponsorship is a person or an organization who support an event or activity financially or through the products or services as part of brand identification and marketing (Merriam-Webster, 2003). Change in the workplace will be focus on a general picture of the differences in workplaces compared years ago.
Human resource policies are "systems of codified decisions, established by an organization, to support administrative personnel functions, performance management, employee relations and resource planning" (Wikipedia, 2010). Organizational culture is "an idea in the field of organizational studies and management which describes the psychology, attitudes, experiences, beliefs and values (personal and cultural values) of an organization." These four issues the author chosen these are the typical characteristics in the workplace the author has been involved in. One workplace in New Zealand is Life Church and the Chinese company which will be mentioned later is Haiwan international trade company.
Issues in workplace
When thinking about marketing, it usually involves advertising, promotion, public relations and publicity (McNamara, 2010). It targets customers and tries to satisfy them. Marketing management is one of the main components in business management which concerns about the 'inbound' the investment the company pay and the 'outbound' the appropriate value in return. The marketing and sponsorship strategy the author has noticed in New Zealand has so many similarities compared with China.
When people walk into shops, banks or watch a sport competition, they often receive some small things, like pens, souvenirs, with the name of the company, the contact number and even their slogans printed which may draw attention from potential customers. Companies put too much advertisement in everywhere, in newspaper, magazines, Internet websites, on TV, during the movies, on the street, buses, clothes, for example Vodafone, ANZ, Westpac. However, the author gets acquainted with another strategy from a friend in a company called ACN, which is expanding the publicity of the company by introducing products to friends and families. That is a very different strategy as it might seem to grow slowly in the first few months, but then the network for sales grow faster and more stable compared to random advertising.
Another thing is that no matter how different all these strategies are, they are all very good at playing words. They make their products or services tempting, and customers pay their money with satisfaction, which conforms of win-win strategy.
The place the author has volunteered in is a Christian organization, which has its huge population and publicity. It grows year by year as new Christian joining the warm family. When there is an event coming, they will put it on the website, with a clear and big poster on top of that. They will also print some leaflets and brochures. From the experience of organizing conferences, the author knows they will put leaflets in every seat and distribute brochures or leaflets at the door. There are some bookshelves in the lounge which have all kind of activities different people may interest in. they will encourage people to participate in by keep reminding them sometimes three weeks before, they briefly publicize what programs, events or interesting things on that day which might take three or five minutes before sermon which will not bored people. Christian there always ask people whether they want to go or invite them if they haven't been there before, which connects everybody and bring everyone together into some big events.
The sponsorship in life church is mainly donation anonymously, which is just for helping people. The author noticed that some companies acquire workers have certain hours a year dedicated themselves into helping community, which is a very positive propaganda for the company publicity and some of them choose to volunteer in church.
Compared to marketing and sponsorship in China, the advertisement for company is everywhere also. There is also a successful example of publicize company mainly by through friends and families, which is called Amway. The place the author has worked in expands their business by gaining a good fame within the international trade area. As long as the company sell goods in a good quality and reasonable prize, business always come to knock on the door. However, business can get worse no matter how when the economy is in depression. The company has to take initiative and strike for growth by getting involved with sponsorship in some local events or national even international festival celebrations. Being positive is the main factor when companies are doing advertisement.
Changes in the workplace
Since the technology has developed every passing day, the world changes fast, and so did the workplace. Based on the interview the author has, the changes in workplace in New Zealand have both sides. The law for employment has improved a lot in order to support workers has a better environment in workplace and also guarantees their rights especially when their right has been violated. The institution of ACC is an organization which has fulfilled the similar functions and also it helps deal with some medical issue when workers got injured. However, there are some facts which cannot be denied that the opportunities in working in New Zealand has decreased very much compared to ten years or even longer time ago. Immigrants who first came here nearly thirty years ago, with a high qualification, well-trained skill had a better chance to be more successful than living in their own countries. 'The land of opportunities' is the best phrase to depict that golden era. Some might blame this for the economic depression in these two years, which affect the employment in New Zealand deeply.
Second, there is a news in September reported that employment law changes will increase workplace discrimination. The first affected group is gay, lesbian, bisexual workers, who will face a harder situation as they have already in the middle of so many difficulties in labor market (Brown & Sleep). Another issue in workplace is a globalised problem, the increasing pressure in workplace, causing unhealthy life style, intensive relation within workplace.
The author has interviewed a volunteer worker in life church who has been there for near thirteen years. What normally people have the impression about church is that it never changes just like all the strict roles. Whereas, life church changes year after year and people love that place more. Years ago, the café upstairs used to be a restaurant provides meals during the sermon and providing a place for people to communicate with and meet new friends. As the people who had meals there were overcrowded and they always stayed there too long. The manager decided to change it into a small delicate café shop, supplying café, dissert and quick meal. The whole decoration is simple and friendly, comfortable couch, easy to make people feel like talking to friends even new people.
The role in life church has changed and it never been that strict which is one of the main reasons Christian love to go to life church, being loved and feel blessed by God. There used to have clubs at night during weekend, giving people much more chance to get contact with others. Then they found some problems going with them, so clubs changed into several conference, interest group get-together, etc. According to these changes in life church, people start to emphasize more on how to live a life better with the best we can do.
Compared to New Zealand, relaxed and self-employed, workplaces in China have changed dramatically. The author reckons the key factor which has such influence on China is that Chinese learn from western world, for examples widely used English in workplace, more business involved in every part of world, people seeking opportunities to study overseas or work so as to get more experience and strengthen their willpower. Chinese combine western system of company management with their own characteristics, as many international companies are required to change the structure of the company to fit for business overseas and become multinational companies, even the government is trying to learn from the financial system.
Workers dress more professional like westerners, business transaction more proficient, technology extensive applied. Offices moved into high-rise buildings, some of them even have a very luxurious environment in office. Employee has higher education qualification, more confidence in performing their ability, but the relation between workers become more competitive. However, workers in China don't have enough holidays compared to western world and the increasing pressure is equal to the increasing salary they earn.
Human resource policies
The first thing people think about human resource, might be something related to ethical or acceptable behavior and the consequences of unacceptable behavior, which is also an important lesson employees should pay attention to before they start to work. The other HR polities which are required to be understood clearly are the nature of the organization, what workers should expect from the organization and what they expect workers, who policies and procedures work (Wikipedia, 2010).
Some of the ethical behaviors expected in work place in New Zealand are first of all, confidentiality, which is vitally important as always. Workers make mistakes as they use some information for their own interests, like making extra income. The second thing is equal opportunities. From the author's point of view, everywhere around the world, manager advertize their support of equal employment. As the fact, the government needs to be more friendly to immigrants. They still cannot find a decent job in New Zealand, as the companies who hire them have to pay more tax and immigrants have to pay more tax from their income. Just because they don't have the qualification from New Zealand, they can only find a job to sustain their life by doing cash dealer, taxi driver, nurse even though they used to be engineers, doctors. An equal policy about immigrants will draw more talented people to New Zealand which is actually a long-term benefit for the society and the country.
There is one difference in office policy compared to China, workers in New Zealand can find an organization or institution to complain about anything which is not in accordance with the contract. The other codes about HR policies are equity and fairness, self-development, advice and information integrity, legality etc (HRINZ, 2010).
The life church is a Christian organization, which emphasize equality. Based on the observation the author have, life church is a well-organized and friendly workplace. The church accepts me with a kind and warm heart. Anyone, no matter men and women, local or immigrants, who wants to help people, they can get a chance to fulfill that, which is a great part about life church.
The HR policies in China have just started just not long ago. Chinese adapt some from western world and that is the reason why they have many similarities. According to the place the author worked before, the author can see that men and women are almost equal. Women have jobs as well as men and also there are some women in charge of the company or the head of departments. Moreover, women can have their marriage leave, maternity leave as well as holiday leave, which is better than years before.
Organizational culture has been defined as "the specific collection of values and norms that are shared by people and groups in an organization and that control the way they interact with each other and with stakeholders outside the organization. (Charles, W. & Gareth, R. 2001). It becomes one of the typical concerns in a bi company. A strong culture helps the organization operate more efficiently; some of them might have an outstanding execution and minor mistakes, because the workers respond same to the stimulus as they share the same organizational values and alignment. Some successful examples in New Zealand would be All Blacks Vodafone, Fonterra.
In life church, they fulfill the commission and follow the God's will, helping people and feel blessed by God. Their faith in religion is a strong culture in their organization, managers don't normally give orders, and workers and volunteers often do the service without being asked to do.
There are many multinational companies in China, which benefit a lot from setting up an organizational culture to strengthen the relation between workers, for instance, Haier, Tsingtao. The company the author worked in China has a value that we produce merchandise in an environmental friendly way, with the high technology applied. In recent years, China has begun to be aware of the environmental issue, which has become a shared value in society. When the company concerns more than just money, workers are willing to work with their passion about life, the environment for the next generation.
Comparison and reflection
Under the unstoppable trend of globalization, there is no absolute boundary between countries. People around the world share more similarities and differences. Especially in workplace, as business around the world, it is best to have a corresponding structure of the company and management, which could push the communication between companies going well when doing business. Workplace in New Zealand has changed in a way of step by step. Even though there are few changes which might be not seem as development. China, a developing country, learning from other countries, taking heaps of steps at one time, still needs to be careful as everything is more like experiment.
As business management varies from different places and cultural background. Each company has their unique way of running the organization. This essay is intend to help companies find their position in a globalised world and search for their own way of doing business and company management by comparing different management under different context.
After all the four main issues being analyzed in details with the comparison of New Zealand and Chinese companies, the author think Life church is the good place to work because they have done a great job in these four aspects and of course the reasons they are successful are more than that. The gist we get from that the author think is trying to think more about workers instead of money all the time, keeping passion for the job employees have , the company will be remarkably astounding one day.
Brown, K. & Sleep, J. (2010. Sep 30th ). New Zealand Council of Trade Unions. Retrieved October 19th, 2010 from http://union.org.nz/news/2010/employment-law-changes-will-increase-workplace-discrimination-30910
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