High Context vs.  Low Context- Ghana is a high context culture meaning that conversations heavily rely on shared knowledge and meaning.  The Ghanaian culture is a homogenous one and has a heavy emphasis on tradition and history, therefore verbal meaning in conversations in minimal. The importance placed on their past and their ancestors contributes to their high context. Ghanaians engage in more nonverbal communication because of their shared likeness can communicate in an indirect manner. It also leads to the emphasis on the community because of the closeness they form through non-verbal communication.

Power distance- Ghana has a high power distance (74) which means that people accept a hierarchical order in which everyone has a place and does not need explanation or justification. Hierarchy in an organization is common and there are inherent inequalities, centralization of power is prominent, and subordinates expect to be told what to do.

Collectivist vs. Individualism- Ghana is a highly collectivistic society. In a close long-term commitment to the member ‘group’, be that a family, extended family, or extended relationships. Loyalty in a collectivist culture is very important, and over-rides most other societal rules and regulations.  It has a heavy emphasis on strong relationships where everyone takes responsibility for members of their group.

Masculinity vs. Femininity- Ghana is considered a relatively feminine society. In feminine countries the focus is on “working in order to live”, managers strive for harmony, people value equality, solidarity and quality in their working lives. Conflicts are resolved by compromise and negotiation. Feminine societies also value things like free time and flexibility. Focus is on well-being of the people and status is not shown.

Uncertainty Avoidance- Ghana scores 55 on this dimension which is an intermediate score; it expresses a slight preference for avoiding uncertainty. In an intermediate country uncertainty avoidance draws from high uncertainty and low uncertainty societies meaning that there are certain aspects of life that are set and structured and others aspects in which ambiguity is accepted.

Relationship vs. task orientation- Ghana is a relationship driving culture in which the importance of building strong relationship ties is more important than finishing tasks quickly.

Cultural Metrics:

Chronemics- In an informal setting the Ghanaian culture is polychromic and while punctuality is expected in a business setting it depends on the established relationship. If you have are meeting up with a friend for coffee being late would not be an issue.

Proxemics- Space in Ghana is situational and the environment, if people are conversing outside it is very informal and the space between the individuals is small. If a conversation is occurring around a business or business setting it is formal and there is more space in between the individuals.

Haptics- Posture is very important in Ghana as this transmits whether someone is listening and understands information.

Occulesis- It seen as respectful to avoid or lower eye contact when speaking to someone who is of higher status.

Kinesics- Facial expressions are very important in the Ghanaian culture as they convey more meaning than words and it communicates interest to the speaker.

References:

“THE HOFSTEDE CENTRE.” Cultural Insights. N.p., n.d. Web. http://geert-hofstede.com/ghana.html

http://academic.depauw.edu/mkfinney_web/teaching/Com227/culturalPortfolios/GHANA/WorldViewTypologies.html#rel

Freitag, Alan, and Ashli Quesinberry. Stokes. (2009) Global Public Relations: Spanning Borders, Spanning Cultures. Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon: New York, NY. Print.

Advertisements