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Ahmed Usman/Umaru Musa Yar’dua University Katsinan, Siraj Abdulkarim /Ahmadu Bello Univeristy Zariaf/ Journal of Scientific Research

Development, 2016

Proceeding of The International Conference on Government & Public Affairs 2016 (ICOGPA2016)
ISBN 978-983-44661-7-6
© 2016 ICOGPA2016

The Influence of Ethnic Group Work Culture on Organizational Performance: The

Moderating Effect of Organizational Culture

Ahmed Usman1,*, Siraj Abdulkarim2

1Department of Public Administration Umaru Muas Yar’adua Katsina of Nigeria
2Department of Public Administration Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Nigeria

Abstract: The purpose of this study is to investigate the influence of ethnic group work
culture on organizational performance among three major ethnic group that from various
departments and units of Kaduna state public service, secondly, to explore the moderating
effect of organizational culture on the relationship between ethnic group work culture and
performance. A sample of 205 directors and unit heads from the various departments and
units of Kaduna state public service. A web-based survey were used to generated data and
data analysis using partial least square (PLS) path modeling. The study revealed that the
ethnic group work culture was found positively and significantly affect organizational
performance. In same vain the moderating effect of organizational culture on the
relationship between ethnic group work culture and organizational performance was full

Key words: Ethnic group, work culture, Organizational Culture, Organizational Performance

1. Introduction organizational policies; meanwhile, Deming

(1986) have make serious stressed on measuring
The organizational performance has been organizational members, processes and outcomes.
creating a vast amount of discussion among Evidence from the existence literature
research, practitioners, educators, and policy indicated that Waal (2012) have conducted a
makers, also capture the interest of both private survey research on high organizational
and public organizations for increase the global performance and organizational effectiveness and
competitive advantages (McFarland, 2008; administered 290 practitioner and academic in the
Hensmans et al., 2013; Park et al., 2013). This period of ten years among bad organizations
organizational performance has been view as around the world. The framework was
organization that engage in to achieve both successively tested in various African content (de
financial and non-financial results that are Waal and Chachage, 2011; de Waal et al., 2014),
extremely improve better than peer collectively and various Asian (de Waal et al., 2009; de Waal
for a long period time, by engaged into a and Frijns, 2011; de Waal and Haas, 2013; de Waal
disciplined method which is really matter to the and Tan Akaraborworn, 2013), Middle Eastern (de
organizations (de Waal, 2012), not only for the Waal and Sultan, 2012) countries and North-
succeed to thrive in difficult circumstances. American (de Waal, 2012a), European (de Waal,
Several theories have been derived for the 2012a) setting. The survey research have revealed
consultants and scholars towards effective that both of western and non-western countries
organization through successful business and have effected in different type of cultures in the
service delivery practices. For instance, the process of achieve high organizational
scientific management theory have highlight the performance (Aluko, 2003).
vital role of organizational culture (Weber 1906); However, the above mention seem
similarly, Drucker and Van de Ven (2005) indicated that organizational performance
emphases the support of employee behavior to framework are generally useful in the several
nations. This indicates the important of
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Ahmed Usman/Umaru Musa Yar’dua University Katsinan, Siraj Abdulkarim /Ahmadu Bello Univeristy Zariaf/ Journal of Scientific Research and
Development, 2016

organizations to engage into improve high collectivism, Power distance (strength hierarchy)
organizational performance in order to maintain and masculinity-femininity. Later Hong Kong
the global competition. But yet, the most independent research led Hofstede add fifth
neglected factor that has been abounded in the dimension which is Long-term Orientation for
literature is concern of ethnic group work culture cover aspect of value not discussed in original
disparate of difference of culture. Because, paradigm. In the early 2010 Hofstede added sixth
mostly in African context the organizational dimension which related to self-restraint
member came from different backgrounds, (Indulgence). Dension (1984), using survey-basic
community, families and sometime ethnic group culture measures, showed that perceived
and races with different type of style, attitude, involvement and participation of organizational
value, belief and behavior to accomplish high members to predicted current and future
organizational performance at a workplace. Thus, performance. Similarly, Gordon, (1985) has
this organizations are require to manage and emphases that high and low performance
coordinate those member who are from different companies in the banking and utilities industries
background through a very efficient and effective had different culture profile. Schein (1992) has
organizational culture that centralize behavior in view culture into three perceptive which are
order to achieve high organizational (Artifact, Espoused value, and Basic assumption
performance (Harrison & Spoke 1992; Mullins, value. Further, defined culture as pattern of
2000; Robbins, Judge, Millett, & Boyle, 2013). The shared basic assumption that the group learned
organization most become central merger of how to resolve its problems of external adoption
organizational members together in a common or internal integration, which to be taught the new
platform to dealing with their behavior and member correct way to perceived, think, and feel
attitude in a systematic way in which no any in relation to other problems (Schein, 1996).
single member from different culture Similary, study by Kotter and Heskett,
background to feel sense of neglected (1992) identify analysis between adoptive culture,
irrespective of cultural differences. strong culture, and effectiveness culture. Barned
(1986), Camerer and Verpsalaine (1988) view
2. Empirical Research on Culture culture from economical perception and defined
conditions that might influence efficient and
The empirical studies on culture can be effective culture. Saffraold (1988) study criticized
found in earlier culture studies (Alavi, Kayworth, the literature on culture strength, normative
& Leidner, 2005; Buckley, 1967; Steenkamp, integration, and also argue the development more
2001; Weber, 1930). Furthermore, Wilkins and sophisticated theory of performance culture.
Ouch (1983) argued concept of “clan” Other study by Gordon and DiTomas (1992)
organization, and also discovered the emphasis on further empirical support on culture
hypothetical condition in which clans culture be strength and conscience value on performance in
more effect and efficient in form of organizations. the insurance industry. Quinn (2003) consider to
Peter and waterman (1982) recognized culture be most important authority in the field of change
characteristic as successful organization and management world-wide on his contribution of
built “theory” of excellence, and it’s has caused competitive value framework, which consist four
much argument (Aupperle et al, 1986; Carroll models (Rational goal, internal process, open
1983; Van de ven, 1983). A study by Greet system, and human relations. Later associated
Hofstede, seem culture model within cross- with kim Cameron to identify four types of culture
cultural communication, and development. which include (Clan, Hierarchy, market and
Further, describers the effects society’s culture Adhocracy culture).
value on its members of organizations, and also However, from the review of literature
how these value relate to behavior by using indicated that culture has been widely and
structure analysis derived (Adeoye, Blessing, multidimensional model, that is next to impossible
Tomei & Lawrence, 2004). Later on Hofstede deal with its in single research. Therefore, the
established his models by using factors analysis current research intended to examine
to survey world-wide employee’s value result organizational culture, ethnic group work culture
between 1967 and 1973 in IBW. The theory and organizational performance. In the view of
recommended four dimensions which culture culture train Hofstede model as generally accepted
value could be analyzed, which include and most comprehensive framework that related
Uncertainty avoidance, Individualism-
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Ahmed Usman/Umaru Musa Yar’dua University Katsinan, Siraj Abdulkarim /Ahmadu Bello Univeristy Zariaf/ Journal of Scientific Research and
Development, 2016

to national culture or/and ethnic culture value groups’ national cultural dimension on their work
and it’s has been extensively criticized (Allon, performance analyzed.
2008). Hofstede (1980) showed that national
culture may affect managerial behavior, by 3.1 Power Distance
influencing managers to support organizational
Power distance, is the degree to which unequal
values that are in conformity with the basic
distribution of power and wealth is tolerated. It
assumptions and beliefs they acquire and
can be known by the level of hierarchy in
develop in their particular cultural contexts.
workplaces and distance between social strata. It
3. Theoretical background is about the power disparity between superiors
and subordinates in organization. In high power
In social identity people of similar attraction distance organizations, there is a wide gap
come together to forme in group seeing between superiors and subordinates; this makes it
themselves as superior to others (out-group) difficult or almost impossible for the subordinates
outside their group (Tafjei & Turner, 1985). to present their ideas which may be useful to the
Hofstede (1980) national cultural dimension also progress of the organization in term of success
take into cognizance the similarity and and productivity.
differences that exist between cultures thereby
inventing a model known as cultural dimensions. 3.2 Uncertainty Avoidance
He stated that there is similarity of judgments,
belief, and behavior among people of same Uncertainty avoidance is basically about
culture from the research he carried out for IBM people’s tolerance of uncertainty. It refers to how
across forty countries. Hofstede’s cultural model much people are scared or frightened by uncertain
among other models is the most widely used events or situations. It also has to do with how
framework. This model can aid understanding of people will deal with the future whether events
ways people communicate between themselves are within their control or beyond their control.
as well as help determine suitable management Looking at high uncertainty avoidance
styles in a particular situation and job setting. organizations, there are more documented rules
Hofstede’s outline five different criteria for so as to reduce uncertainty whereas in a low
defining national cultures which are referred to uncertainty avoidance organizations, there are
as ‘‘dimensions’’ and they occur in nearly all less written rules and customs.
possible combinations (Aluko, 2003). Similarly,
Ming-Yi (2006) re-examined and carried out 3.3 Individualism
same study as that of Hofstede (1984) on Taiwan
and the United States. In the construction Individualism-collectivism is a measure of
industry, Ang and Ofori (2001) and Bredillet et al. whether people want to work alone as individuals
(2010) confirmed that the industry is being or collectively as a team. It shows the degree of
influenced by national culture; both at local and group integration people with high sense of
international levels. This idea is the bedrock of a individualistic values cared more of self-
theoretical basis of evaluating people’s differing actualization and career progress in the
behavior of an ethnically diverse society. organization, while those with low individualistic
Manager’s consciousness of differences in culture values cared more of organizational benefits more
from one nation to another will assist him in than their own personal interests. In a collectivist
managing efficiently diversity in organisation society, people work mostly as members of a
(Ali, 2006). From these emerged originally four lasting and cohesive group or organization with
cultural dimensions Power distance; absolute loyalties to the group.
Masculinity/Feminility; Collectivism/
Individualism; and uncertainty avoidance which 3.4 Masculinity
managers can adopt as a managerial style to
manage people from different nationality. Masculinity refers to gender roles in
However Aluko (2003) in Nigeria adopted this in organizations. In high masculinity organizations,
his research work on impact of culture on textiles fewer women can attain higher-level position and
companies in Lagos, Kano and Delta States. The get a better-paying job. On the other hand in low
cultural dimensions of the key ethnic groups masculinity organizations, women can aspire to
were determined and the impact of the ethnic any level of professional attainment. Some women
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Ahmed Usman/Umaru Musa Yar’dua University Katsinan, Siraj Abdulkarim /Ahmadu Bello Univeristy Zariaf/ Journal of Scientific Research and
Development, 2016

have great abilities, may be more than some men The positive association between culture and
and could perform per excellence if given the performance enhance perfect improving positive
opportunity in their organizations, hence the result to organization. The organizational
need to look away from gender disparity and performance has a strong impact on
concentrate more on performance, organizational culture as it leads to influence
professionalism and productivity. productivity. The norms and values of
organization based upon different cultures
4. Conclusion influence on work force management. In an
organization strong culture enables to effective
The different value and belief based on and efficient management of work force. The
organizational members to interrelate with one common path for making perfect use of resources
another for enhance high organizational in same cultural association helps in positive
performance, because culture merger development of organization. On basis of
organizational members together in a common particular conditions organizational culture is
platform to dealing with their behavior and helpful in improving and providing competitive
attitude in a systematic way in which no any edge. The commitment of group efficiency helps in
single member feel sense of neglected improving organizational performance based
irrespective of differences. In more than 60 upon organization sustainability. The nature and
organizational research survey 7600 small power of organization culture influence upon
business and companies’ performance between sustainability and effective of organization.
the periods of 1999-2007 have been evaluated.

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Ahmed Usman/Umaru Musa Yar’dua University Katsinan, Siraj Abdulkarim /Ahmadu Bello Univeristy Zariaf/ Journal of Scientific Research and
Development, 2016

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