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Effect of Culture Shock in the Work Environment

Info: 7562 words (30 pages) Dissertation
Published: 5th Oct 2021

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Tagged: Employment


Culture plays a major role in Globalisation, there are many factors that needs to be considered when one thinks of expanding to another country or recruiting from another country. As human resource is one of the critical assets of most organisation as they seek to meet their objectives.

As the world has become a big village and companies operates across countries and continents; culture becomes a major factor when one is recruiting across borders.

Globalisation and migration combine with others factors has illustrated and represented how diverse groups from different nations can work together to achieve a common goal in business. Having diversity at the work place and blending the various cultures is key. There are social, working, religious and political culture amongst others that needs to be taken into consideration in a country.

The study that will be conducted will look at diversity in the Care industry in the United Kingdom. It will look at the gender, age and age diversity in the care and the Culture shock. The level of culture shock with in the Lilly Care and Alderwood LL. Care providers with in the Northamptonshire County. Mixed methods of approach where data will be collected by questioners, interviews and visit to the various unites they have. There will also be observation and interacting with staff.

The Social Care industry is one of the industries that have workers from different parts of the world. They have Doctors, Nurses, Social Workers, Support Workers and Carers from different backgrounds, countries, and Social works of life. They all have their own cultures beliefs and work ethics. This industry faces problem of integrating all these workers from different culture diversity. This is the main reason why this topic was chosen to investigate this problem and how it affects the industry and how it can be minimised. This research proposal will focus on explaining factors contributing to the Culture Shock in the working environment, the effects and how it can be minimised.

Finally, this study will illustrate the significance of Culture and diversity at the work place and how it is taken into consideration. Also the effect of Culture shock on the staff and how it can be minimised to improve their performance.


Cover page………………………………………………………………………………………. 1

Table of content………………………………………………………………………………….2




Chapter One…………………………………………………………….……..8

Literature review………………………………………………………………………………..8

Methodology…………………………………………………………………………………… 14

Discussion……………………………………………………………………………………… 16

Recommendation……………………………………………………………. 17

Reference list………………………………………………………………………………….. 18


According to Crawley et al (2013),

“Cultural shock is the name given to an unpleasant feeling of being confronted with an unfamiliar culture. This state may result in rejection of the culture or a gradual acceptance of the differences experienced.”

The purpose of this research is to investigate how Culture Shock has an effect in the any working environment, and how it can be minimised especially in the Social Care Industry. It would be very difficult to cover the whole social care industry as there are many providers; therefore, the study used two social care providers within the Northamptonshire area focusing mainly on migrants workers from the diaspora. How they settle and adjust to the culture of the UK.

This topic is worth investigating because the social care industry in recent times has come under the spot light and major changes are been implemented in this sector since the case of Seven-year-old Victoria Climbié who left her parents’ home in the shanty suburb of Abobo in Ivory Coast. Again the shocking case of Baby P who died without Social services, the Council, the police and other services been able to communicate and act on time. This further brings to woes of the Social care industry into sharp focus and gives further credence to investigating the various issues affecting the industry. It would look at specifically culture shock at the place with the diversity of the staff and service users.

Burnes (2009) sees Change managementas the defining and adopting corporate strategies, structures, procedures and technologies to deal with changes in external conditions and the business environment. Also Crawley et al (2013) looks at Cultural shock as the name given to an unpleasant feeling of being confronted with an unfamiliar culture. This state may result in rejection of the culture or a gradual acceptance of the differences experienced.

With the high level of migrant workers within the Social Care industry, it makes it more important to look at these two issues.

The aim of this study is to find out how the issue of culture shock is dealt with at the work place. This study refers to two care providers; Lilly Care and Alderwood LL In the Northamptonshire area focusing on how they have managed to overcome Culture Shock with their employees and service users.

The study used both secondary and primary information. Secondary information was gathered through the review of existing documents related to the subject. This was done to understand what Culture shock is, the factor that contributes to it, the effects it has on staff and the organisation, and how to prevent it from taking place in an organization. In addition, the study also sourced primary data from both migrant and none migrant social care workers in the selected companies. This was done through a survey, interviews and field observations by the researcher


This section is going to explain what Managing change and Culture shock is, the factors that contributes to them and importance. How it should be implemented and handle within an organization. The effect it has on staff and service users. Finally, what strategies they have put in place to overcome this industry problem.


One first needs to understand what cultural is before they can understand what culture shock is.

“Culture is the characteristic way of behaving and believing that a group of people in a country/region (or firm) have evolved over time and share” (Briscoe and Schuler 2006, p116).

This goes deeper to look at the behaviour of people and groups.  It looks at their characteristic, the manner in which they go about their activities. (Hofstede 1984) looks at culture as “the collective programming of the mind which distinguishes the members of one human group from another” Hofstede sees culture as an identity of a group, it is more or less what makes them stand out from others. The definitions look at culture, Crawley et al is looking at the feeling that one has if they find themselves in an unfamiliar territory. It looks closer to what the individual reaction would be. That is if they would result in rejecting it or accepting it.

Myers et al, (2012) also defines Culture as “the name given to the collection of accepted ways of doing things and values that are shared by and influence people’s behavior in an organization.”

People get aware of the differences in culture when they stand at its boundaries, when they encounter different cultures and when they become aware or get to know that there are other ways of doing things or there is a contradiction to their own culture (Anthony 1982).

There are different types of cultures and everybody looks at it from a different prospective. It can be our everyday way of life of an individual, the way the people live in a community together or the manner in which an organization is run amongst other. This could be the language, the basic assumption, behaviors and norms.


According to Crawley et al (2013), “Cultural shock is the name given to an unpleasant feeling of being confronted with an unfamiliar culture. This state may result in rejection of the culture or a gradual acceptance of the differences experienced.” Having looked at the definition, it shows that this is the process whereby an individual goes through a series of psychological and sociocultural stages, in attempting to adjust to a new culture or environment that they find themselves in

(Ferraro1994 cited in Craig 1979) argues “that culture shock is a “psychologically disorienting experience,” He went on to say that the remedy of culture shock is for one to fully understand the concepts of culture, this will make them to understand and appreciate other culture regardless of where they are working”.

Culture shock can be described as some kind of sickness that is measured to common cold, there is no way that it can be prevented because each time we adjust to another culture or readjust to our own culture there is this level of culture shock that one goes through. (Weaver, 1986)

The world is shaped by “major cultures” (Huntingdon 1993) the Western, Confucian, Japanese, Islamic, Hindu, Slavic-orthodox, Latin American, African just to name a few and they all have their own unique cultures. Their way of life, working habits are all different and unique.

(Wheelen and Hunger, 2004) Looks at a different type of culture, they look at Corporate Culture. This takes into consideration the way the values that members of staff have transmitted from generation to generation as well as the expectations they have.  This can be from work ethics to how work is conducted or the manner in which they expect one to behave amongst others.

(Hofstede 1984) and (Wheelen and Hunger, 2004) both look at culture as the identity, one looks at it from the individual point of view whiles the other looks at it from the corporate point of view. The corporate point of view creates a sense of identity for their employees, it can also be used as a yardstick for measurement and reference. It creates a stable working environment and helps to generate employee commitment as they further discussed.

Juffer (1986) states that culture shock is mostly cause by confronting a new environment and the modifying of one behaviour to adjust to a new environment; be it Social, political or working culture.


There are four stages of culture shock according to (Thomas 2008); He looks at the various stages in detail and explains how one feels and how it affects an individual. Those various stages that he discussed are as follows:

  • Honeymoon – This is also known as the excitement stage, during this stage it feels like you are on holiday and you are having an adventure. Everything is new and you feel excited to be in a new environment it feels different from what you are used to. You feel the excitement and sometimes get over worked. This is the stage where everything is new and you are very ready to try new things and learn new ways of doing things.
  • Culture shock – This can also be called the withdrawal stage, at this stage one starts to realize that everything around you is different and you start to miss your normal routine. The excitement fades. Everything around you seems very strange, and you start to withdraw to yourself as you feel alienated. Your normal everyday activities no longer exist. That is sometimes the time you have to wake up or go to bed changes and your body has to adjust to all these little things. You are completely out of your comfort zone and you start to withdraw to yourself and feeling homesick. This is the stage where you notice that it is no more fun but reality and you cannot get away with been a stranger anymore according to (Thomas 2008).
  • Adjustment or the Settling in stage- This is when one starts to adjust to the environment and learn to start accepting the changes that have taken place. Most things that were difficult for you to accept or seem strange to you start to become normal. They don’t bother you and you accept them as they are. You tends to adjust yourself to the fact that you are away from home and things are not the same. You tends to get comfortable with the way things are or the food and environment.
  • Mastery – At this stage you have already adjusted after a certain period of time. You start to accept their culture and you even start to sport some of their cultures that are better or preferable to your culture. You start to look at the good aspects of the culture and take in the good values that it has.

(Ukcisa.org.uk, 2016) Also looked at the various stages too, but considered it to be five (5) stages unlike (Thomas 2008). These stages are almost the same, the honeymoon stages are the same, the distress stage which can be compared to the culture shock stage of (Thomas 2008), the re-integration stage as per (Ukcisa.org.uk, 2016) was integrated into the culture shock because according to Thomas 2008, this is the stage you may reject the differences you encounter and may feel angry or frustrated. This may cause you to be more withdrawn because you are frustrated with the changes.  There is sometimes hostility to the new culture. That is the difference between the two, as autonomy stage and the Independence stage are similar to the adjustment stage and mastery stages.


There are various elements that contribute to culture shock; it differs on the individual level. When recruiting work force from overseas all factors that leads to culture needs to be taken into consideration. The sourcing of candidates ready and willing to work abroad is problematic. Once employees become adults with families and roots laid down there is generally a reluctance to move abroad and uproot one’s lifestyle for an extended period of time.  Hofstede et al, 2010 discussed that every person carries within him or herself a way of thinking and this has developed form childhood. During childhood is the time a person has to develop and as soon as that pattern is developed or learned, they would first have to unlearn that in order to learn a new way of doing things. This means in the case of cultures, one with first have to unlearn their culture before learning a new one or adjusting to it. This then becomes part of their culture and way of doing things.

According to (Shi and Wang, 2013) there was a research that was conducted on 80 Chinese business expatriates from different backgrounds on some of the factors that made them encountered some level of cultural shocks. These factors were greatly influenced by communication, language, religious and traditional issues. These had effect on their work cultures and performance.

Moran et al., 2011 shares similar view, they look at culture to be the means of adopting to circumstances and then passing it on from generations to generations. He also went on to cite Huntington as saying that in this Morden world most conflicts would be because of clash in culture. People of like ideology would likely be together.

Moran et al and Shi & Wang look at the similar factors that lead to culture shock whiles (Shi and Wang, 2013) look at four (4) main factors that lead to culture shock amongst Chinese experts and work (Moran et al., 2011) looks at more than that. They consider ten (10) such as:

  • Sense of Self and Space – various cultures deal with this in a different ways in that others are closer together and others preferred to have their own space.
  • Food and Feed Habits – This is what really affect people, as people of different culture has different feeding habits, the way food is papered, presented or even what is eaten. Other culture delicacy can be gods or pet and may be an offence to eat.   The basic diet of an individual is very important; this affects the ability of the person to function and sometimes lead to poor health. This is very important in every day’s life. Having a balance diet is key to health and would have an impact (Moran et al., 2011).
  • Communication and Language – Communication is very important in any environment, be it social or working. When the ability to communicate effectively is taking away from an individual makes it difficult for them to function. As communication it key, it affects an individual ability to function hence leading to frustration.  Sometime other people language (verbal or nonverbal) may be rude to another or even tone of voice may come across as been rude. Trompenaars (1993), Hall (1976) and even Schwart (1992) all came to a conclusion that communication across culture and boards is of major relevance. According to Hall (1976) Cultures are different in the way information and context are used to create meaning.
  • Climate – Climate place a major role in our everyday living activities, and it has a great deal of effect on our productivity. (Moran et al., 2011) Considering the environment that people work in also place a major role. That is both the physical environment and the working environment. A change of weather has a major impact on productivity as studies has shown.
  • Dress and Appearance – Some dressings in one country may seem offensive to others from different countries. That includes garments, body decorations and others and may lead to isolation. Culture dressing differs from countries to countries hence has an effect on cultures.
  • Time and Time Consciousness – How timing at work is dealt with, how time is managed differs by cultures. In other cultures people are precise with their timing whiles in others they are lay back. This can also take into consideration one of Hofstede’ six dimension; the Long and Short term Orientation.
  • Relationship – In various cultures, relationships are formed in different ways, sometimes it is not right to mix whiles in others people mix up irrespective of age, gender or colour. In some cultures, it is wrong for a woman to be the head. It also takes into consideration their working relation and ethics. Hofstede dimension of Individualism should be taken into consideration. Others cultures are made up of team players and other are not and they preferred to work alone.
  • Working Habits and Practices – The manner of behavior at work may vary from country to country or work place to work place and may cause shock to someone who is not aware of it. There are different working practices and culture eg, praises and accomplishment etc.
  • Values and Norms – Culture values plays a major role in a person’s everyday activities and a difference in that value can make it difficult for them to be accepted. That is how they pretrial themselves or behave in a group or gathering. Every culture values differs culture by culture, these defines who we are and how we will relate to others, Hofstede et al, 2010 discussed that every person carries within him or herself a way of thinking and this has developed form childhood. These are the values and norms that we grow with.
  • Mental Process and Learning – People of different cultures think and develop in different ways. It is difficult for one to develop others in a different working environment that do not have the same methods of training.
  • Beliefs, Religion and Attitude – Every culture has its own beliefs, there are others that belief in the supernatural and others that that. There are others that religion plays a major role in their day to day activities and others that don’t. Isaacs and Benjamin (1991) states how culture is defined as human behaviour and these includes our thoughts, customs beliefs and religion amongst other. These are major factors in our cultures.

These factors were discussed by Thomas (2008) and (Ukcisa.org.uk, 2016) as factors that due consideration needs to be given to. When considering culture Shock, these factors in considering and how it develops according to both authors.


Effects of culture shock may vary, this has effect on both the individual and the Organization. This may vary from individual to individual and from Business to business depending on the situation. Both businesses and individuals experience culture shock in their own ways as.


  • Illness – Individuals do get ill and homesick after the honeymoon period that was discussed in the four stages of culture shock.
  • Poor communication – As per (Shi and Wang, 2013) one of the major problems with the Chinese Experts was communication. Language barrier makes it very difficult to communicate; hence been able to communicate to other members of staff would be very difficult.
  • Isolation – (Ferraro1994 cited in Craig 1979)  as saying that there are three reactions to culture shock and one of them is been isolated, regression, rejection and anger. This leads to one been by themselves or only mixing with those who have similar culture. That is like going to a gathering with people from their own country.
  • Legal problems – Legal issues sometimes arises due to one not knowing the culture and the law which may land them in trouble with the law.


  • Productivity – Productivity of a company would drop if there is poor communication and lack of understanding. Culture shock can also lead to that if workers do not understand the culture of the business or the environment within which they operate. Ozgen et al., (2011) talks about how ethnic diversity leads to more creativity, it can also lead to high cost according to research. This sometimes may lead to increase or high level in conflict within the work place which may lead to low productivity.
  • Less effective – There is less efficiency in the business if the culture of the business is not understood. (Wheelen and Hunger, 2004) look at Corporate Culture. This take into consideration the way the values that members of staff has transmitted from generation to generation. If it is not taken into consideration, there can be lack of efficiency.
  • Poor communication – If cultures are not taken into consideration there can be breakdown of communication. Communication is one of the key in business and lack of commination would lead to less productivity and extra financial cost.


Companies have tried to find a way in which they can prevent culture shock. This has been one of the major problems that businesses are faced with in considering recruiting from abroad or send out expertise out to work.

(Bhugra and Gupta, 2011) “Adaptation to a new culture is related to the individuals trying to settle down and modify behaviours and attitudes in response to social expectations.” This is more or less forgetting about your old ways of doing things and adopting a new way.

There are a list of things that can be done to reduce culture shock. The list below indicate practical ways an organization could prevent as well as reduce negative culture shock.

  • Overseas acquaintance trips
  • Cultural sensitivity training
  • Cultural assimilator training
  • Cultural orientation programmes
  • Suggested use of role plays, on-the-job-training, self-instruction
  • Delivered by in-company staff, returning expatriates and host country nationals
  • Personal characteristics of those receiving it
  • Specific issues that the work overseas will involve
  • Culture specific training adds value


Finally, management understands that employers are a very important part of the social care industry, this is why the leadership have strategically put in place methods of implementing change and dealing with culture shock.

Evaluating the above points on strategy geared towards achieving Managing change and culture shock it is important that they are implemented and dealt with correctly in order for their Social care industry to have adequate staff and well-motivated.


This section involves detailed description of research design as well as approaches adopted for the study.

This research used primary and secondary information from Northampton University electron library search online (Nelson), Google scholar, books, interviews and questionnaires. Various Social care providers hand book and process and procedures books were also used.

The key methodology considerations involved the research strategy, approach, as well as the research design used. Following this, the researcher then discusses the research instrument, sampling, data collection as well as the data analysis processes. Finally, the issues involving research ethics and limitations are identified and discussed.

Research Approach

According to Sanders et al., (2009) there are two major approaches which can be used within a research. These are inductive and the deductive approaches. There are many factors that needs to be taken into consider in choosing and selecting which one to use; the deductive or the inductive approach. This depends on the nature of the research or study that is being conducted; if it is analytical, explanatory, exploratory or descriptive (Luton, 2010).

The deductive approach focuses on the researcher creating procedural structures and models which need to be tested through experimental observations. This means utilising specific inferences to test the relationships between study variables (Collis and Hussey, 2009). These are tested against existing theory and as such are a top down approach with the researcher starting with a general context and then moving to a more specific context. On the other hand inductive approach which involves taking empirical observations which are then utilised to make and develop theory thus a bottom-up approach. The researcher utilised a deductive approach whereby the study variables of workplace diversity and the effect it has on the workers were tested. It will also look at the effect of the various Cultures and their effect.


The study used mixed methods of qualitative and quantitative to collect data relevant to answer the research questions. Questionnaire, face to face interviews and field observation were used.  Mitchell and Jolley (2012) stated that the use of questionnaire helps the researcher collect data can be obtained from a huge number of people in a short space of time and it is cost efficient. Again interviews help to dive deeper to get insight relevant information to the research but not just using questioners alone to gather data (Carbery and Cross 2013).

In this light, the study used the both methods to gather the most information as possible for the research.


Research philosophy determination is very important in any research process; this is a process that helps in providing guidelines on how the research information is compiled and how the information gathered as well as how to answer the research questions. According to Saunders et al., (2009) research philosophy involves the creation of knowledge which the research utilises to guide the study. Collis and Hussey (2009) discussed the two major philosophies which are utilised in research, positivism and interpretivism. They looked at the positivism perspectives as being involved with reality in the world which is inflexible and which needs to be studied objectively without interferences with the research phenomena under study.  Interpretivism approach on the other hand focuses on understanding reality through the subjective interpretivism as well as intervention (Collins and Hussey, 2009). This involves carrying out a study on its natural setting and acquiring the views, perceptions and observations of the participants in order to understand the situation. The current study to a large extent utilises an interpretivism philosophy. This involves acquiring the experiences and views of the management as well as the employees in order to understand how Lilly Care and Alderwood LL handles their workplace diversity issues and Culture Shock in two companies. The interpretivism approach thus helps in bring the actual perceptions and experiences in workplace diversity issues and how diversity affects the employee performances. Culture plays a major role in diversity. How it affects the company and the individuals that are working with in the company. This can either be in the positive way or not.


This section of the research deals with the presentation and analysis of primary data that has been collected. This will share light on the information, providing explanations to meet the objectives of then research. The section begins with analysis of demographic information of the respondents for the study. This is followed by analysis of the respondents’ responses from the questionnaire, interview and the observations. This will be done in line with the research objectives for the study. Following this would be a discussion of the research findings with respect to the theoretical framework, data presentation and the broad literature review.

Participants Information

The researcher distributed 60 questionnaires to the selected participants and companies within the Care Industry. There were also three field trips of observation to the two companies and various unites that of the companies. In all 60 questionnaires were given out, of which 53 questionnaires were fully answered and returned. This gives a response rate of 83.33%. The analysis is therefore going to be based on the 53 respondents who returned the questionnaire fully answered. Below are overview sociodemographic characteristics of respondents including age, gender, ethnicity, training and level of culture shock.

Figure 1: Number of workers in the age range

Source: Author’s Fieldwork, 2017

From figure 1, the total sample size was 54 with ages ranging from 18 to more the 55 years. The breakdown is as follows; 6% of the respondents were between the age of 18 and 24, 51% were between the age of 25 and 34, another 25% were between the 35 and 44, 9% fell between 45 and 54 while the remaining 4% were above 55 years old. From the above distribution, shows that the youth and middle-age people dominated the large number of work force for these two companies. The migrant population in the Care industry in the UK of those two companies are high since bulk of the middle age workers in the survey were migrants.

Table 1: Gender of respondents

MALE 21 40%
FEMALE 32 60%

Taking a closer look at the table 1 above it can be seen that the work force that participated in the survey is made up of 60% females and 40% are males. While this may deviate from most industries where males dominate the workforce, it is not surprising as the care industry has historically been dominated by females. It can thus be concluded that the companies’ workforce and the care industry specifically is somehow dominated by females.

Figure 2: Ethnicity

Source: Author’s Fieldwork, 2017

The pie chart in figure 2 clearly shows the ethnic diversity within the work place. There are various groups of people that are from different ethnic background which means that there are diverse culture within the work place amongst the participants. Looking at the pie chat, there is a clear indication that British has the highest percentage which is 38% follow by the Africans with 28%, then the Eastern European are 23% and other cultures at 11%. Taking the various ethnic backgrounds individually it can be said that the British culture is more dominant at 38%. Closely looking at the pie chart it can also be said that the migrants makes up the bulk of the workforce when they are all added together, they make up 62% hence making the foreign culture dominate to the British culture.

Figure 3: Training Conducted

Source: Author’s Fieldwork, 2017

Figure 3 illustrates the level of training that the participants in the survey have received. It can be determined that 96% of them has had training that is relevant to the performance of their jobs, 79% has had training in British culture to enable them perform their jobs, 96% of them has had training in other cultures and 4% has not had any form of training.

Figure 4 Impact of Overall Training on Performance

Source: Author’s Fieldwork, 2017

The chart in figure 4 shows the impact of training on the performance of the participants. 4% show that it did not have any impact because they have not had any training at all. There has been a total impact of 96% where 9% felt that the training  had a little impact on their performance, 13% felt that it had a medium impact and 74% had a very high impact over all on their performance.

Figure 5: Relevance of Culture Training

Source: Author’s Fieldwork, 2017

The Pie chart illustrates how well the culture training that was given was embraced by the participants. 72% stated that it was very relevant, 19% very relevant, 4% could not say because they were not given any training at all and 5% felt that it was of no relevance at all, They felt that having a cultural training had nothing much to do with their duties they were performing.

Figure 6: Culture Shock

Source: Author’s Fieldwork, 2017

With the difference in culture, it is sometimes difficult for people to function effectively to please both employers and the end users. Figure 5 clearly shows that everyone in the work place has experienced some level of culture shock. Out of the 53 participants in the survey 18 had problem with receiving instructions from the opposite sex. These were people mainly from Africa and other countries; this seems to be the effect on them from their culture background. 46 had difficulties with others’ cultures, 15 felt like stranger in the work place in their own country, which is due to the diversity at the work place. 45 had communications problem, 33 felt homesick and 48 had a clash of culture. It can clearly be seen that culture plays a major role in the running of the day to activities of the company.  Be it working culture, social culture, political or whatever culture; it needs to be taken into consideration. Almost everyone within in the companies has experienced some level of culture shock.


Briscoe and Schuler (2006) discussed culture as an important variable that shape people’s behaviour, way of thought, actions and inactions. The exposure to a new environment different from where one was originally born and bred could have frustrating and psychological effect on people in ways that affect their call and response to duty as per the definition of culture. At the workplace, most of the everyday routines of employees have a silent but relevant cultural undertone that is understood and relevant to specific country contexts and expectations, that is according to Hofstede (1980). Failure to meet such expectations means that one’s delivery and overall performance at work will be less valued and appreciated.

From the data presentation, it was evident that most employees interviewed sometimes found it difficult to effectively function due mainly to clash of their understanding and that affected them in their workplaces. This is mainly the case for people from non-European origin. This group of people tend to experience cultural shock at the extreme, making it quite uneasy for them to easily assimilate and function to meet expectations.

The study further revealed that in-service training that addresses expectations relevant to the country and work context have been helpful to migrant workers’ transition to the UK work environment and performance expectation. In cases where respondents said they were given in-service and on the job training, they also said they could adapt fast to the new culture and improved their work performance sharply.

At the end of this research, there will be a clear picture of how Culture shock has an effect on the working environment and how it can be minimised in the work place. It would show the effect it has on the service users and the service providers too. It would demonstrate also how the Businesses gain more if employees are kept positive and motivated.

Effect of Age and Performance

In some cu Hofstede (1980) identified four division of culture:

Power distance



Uncertainty avoidance

Management Style


Centralised or decentralised

Organisational Structure

Recruitment and induction




Employee Relations

Price (2004)



The current study was about cultural shock in the work place and how it could be minimised, using Lilly Care and Alderwood LL as a case study. It also took into consideration globalisation and diversity within the work place.

This research took into consideration many factors; what culture shock is, the factors that leads to culture shock, the diversity at the work place, gender differences. It also took into consideration the various training that staff receives, the effect it had on their performance and how relevant it was in the performing their duties and improving their culture awareness.

From the study it can be concluded that Lilly Care and Alderwood LL deemed it very necessary for culture awareness training due to the fact of diversity at the work place. Only 30% of their work force are British and 62% are made up of workforce from Africa, Eastern Europe and other nations. Training was conducted on both other culture and British culture, this was to help everyone adjust to the working culture in Britain and for other to understand the cultures of others that they were working with. 74% of the workforce felt that the level of training that they received had a high impact on their performance.

Weaver (1986) stated that Culture shock can be described as some kind of sickness that is measured to common cold, there is no way that it cannot be prevented because each time we adjust to another culture or readjust to our own culture there is this level of culture shock that one goes through.

Leaving from one job to another would still cause some level of culture should as one may not be adjusted to the work culture within that environment.

Juffer (1986) also states that culture shock is mostly cause by confronting a new environment and the modifying of one behaviour to adjust to a new environment; be it Social, political or working culture.

Finally the study reports that culture shock would always be around and it cannot be ignore in improving the performance of our staff but it can be minimised in this time of globalisation. Lilly Care and Alderwood LL had found a way of training and educating their staff about diversity.


The following recommendations can be made from the study based on the research findings, what scholars has said and the conclusion.

The recommendation would focus on the diversity of the workforce, the training they have received and the effect it has had on their performance.

When dealing with culture shock due attention needs to be given to diversity, although Ozgen et al., (2011) says that ethnic diversity leads to more creativity, it can also lead to high cost according to research. This is due to difficulties in communication, this sometimes may lead to increase or high level in conflict within the work place. This can also be proven from the research with Lilly Care and Alderwood LL. Out of the 53 participants 45were affected by communication problem and only 8 were not affected, this is due to the high level of diversity at the work place. Only 38% of the workforce are British and 62% from other cultural backgrounds.

In minimising culture shock at the work place, it needs to be remembered according to Weaver (1986) Culture shock is something that we will always experience when we leave our comfort zone, it is described as some kind of illness that cannot be prevented because each time we adjust to another culture or readjust to our own culture there is this level of culture shock that one goes through. This shows that culture shock cannot be eradicated but minimised in the work place.

IT can be recommended that proper training with in the work place of diversity can help in minimising the risk of culture shock. The research on Lilly Care and Alderwood LL has shown how the training of the staff has had a high level of impact on the staff, only 4% of the staff indicated that it did not have an impact and 74% indicated that it had a high impact on their performance.

Just conducting training in relations to the job would not be enough to minimise culture shock but also providing staff with relevant culture training as indicated in the research would help. 72% of the participants in the research felt that culture training was very relevant in helping them perform their duties at work.


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