Culture is the lifestyle, customs, beliefs, attitudes, habit, values, behaviors, art and any other objects that characterize or constitute a peoples way of life. In every setting or context, therefore, people are majorly affected or behave according to the shaping by their culture. The working environment is no exemption.
A workplace is any location whereby a person provides their skills and expertise in order to achieve a certain result and goal in exchange for a reward for the expertise given. In most working environments, people base their judgment, attitude, perception and behavior towards other people or work based on their cultural background. This usually has a positive and a negative impact. For example, people from strong cultures tend to look down on people from the small cultures. They view them as weak and thus assign them low status jobs where they can easily monitor and control them. This results to low self -esteem and as a result low productivity on such people. These people from small culture thus tend to perceive themselves as weak and therefore cannot go for the top challenging positions as they believe they cannot perform or are not meant for them.
The other culture effect is how people tend to approach various issues and tasks. Due to their upbringing, lifestyle, and beliefs, people approach different tasks differently and this mostly results in misunderstandings and conflicts in the workplace. For example, some cultures are very rigid to change and do not easily accept while some easily understand it is inevitable. In a working place, therefore, some people from the rigid cultures will tend to oppose change as others accept and adopt. This slows down the growth of the workplace.
In the book Women in the City of the Dead, most women have run away from their homes in search of freedom and peace. They choose to be immigrants and live in the cemetery but enjoy the freedom which their cultures deny them. The women chose to have freedom to do what they know they can in order to survive.
Culture on the other hand while viewed and accepted positively contributes a lot to the growth and productivity in a workplace. This is because each individual represents a different culture thus a different and new idea in handling an issue. This may result to increased creativity and innovation.
One of the major effects of culture and stereotype is on the gender and gender roles in the society. In most cultures, the women and the girls were viewed as weak and only able to handle domestic tasks. The men, on the other hand, were viewed as strong and wise and as such were to be the breadwinners of their homes. The men were therefore allowed to work in order to provide to their wives and children. Professions such as engineering, architecture, pilot, doctors, scientists, hunting were and are still viewed as manly and can only be handled by men. The culture could not view a woman as capable of handling such education and become a doctor or even an engineer. She was and still is viewed as a weak being.
However, this should not be the case. The culture should stereotype on women as weak because of giving birth and cooking. Her strength should not be determined by the physical. All the above-mentioned professions require physical, emotional and mental strength. A woman has all that just like a man to study for five, six, seven or even ten years to become an engineer or a pilot. None of these professions should be performed or assigned to a certain gender just because of the vague stereotypes but because of the qualification well suits.
Twenty years ago, only the men could be scientists and doctors. Women were strictly forbidden from pursuing education or even having access to it. By then, women did not have a say at all in the society, they did not even know they had any right in the society. No culture would accept that woman can invent anything as it did not believe the woman had such brain power. The fact that women never got any education made this even more convincing.
Ten years later, the situation was still the same, the culture still viewed and treated the woman as weak and the man was empowered. However, due to improvement in technology and increased awareness, there was a concern on what a woman can do rather than give to just give birth and cook. She now started to get recognized and to be empowered by being educated and given more chances to contribute in the society. The woman was able to access a working environment but in the low-status job positions.
Currently, everything has changed. The woman has been given too much power to pursue whatever she can. She has been given all the rights and has full awareness of her potential. Now the woman can be a doctor, there are so many women scientists, professors, engineers, managers, chief executive officers and other top positions with a high status that a woman could not have accessed twenty years ago.
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