Cultural Dimensions

Essay question: Attempt to explain your own culture to someone from a different culture on the basis of the culture dimensions!

To start with let me give you a short overview over the five existing dimensions of difference according to Geert Hofstede.
The dimensions are:
  * Individualism vs. collectivism
  * Power distance
  * Uncertainty avoidance
  * Career success vs. quality of life
  * Confucian dynamism
Knowing these culture dimensions, I would like to attempt to relate them to the Austrian culture.
At first there is the question of whether Austria is individualistic or collectivistic. Austria belongs to those countries which are highly individualistic as well as Sweden, Finland etc. Austrians can be described as separate individuals in some way which means that they are focused primarily on taking care of themselves and their immediate families which can be seen by the fact that weekends are generally devoted to family activities. The family can be defined as the basis of the Austrian social structure.
Each person should determine his or her own beliefs and behavior.
Another example for Austria being an individualistic country is the belief that certain universal values should be shared by all. Natives know these values but also foreigners are expected to adapt to the Austrian society. Individual self-respect and respect to others have top priority. Austrians are generally conservative people both prudent and moderate in their behavior.
“Regimentation” and “compartmentalization” are useful ways of describing how Austrians organize their lives. Even their dressing is conservative and never too ostentatious. There is a strict etiquette which you have to stick to. In contrast to collectivistic countries Austrians attach importance to shaking hands with everyone individually when entering a room, including children. Another example of individualism is the formal communication which often follows strict rules.

As far as power distance is...