The roles of national culture in affecting quality management practices and quality performance - multilevel and multi-country analysis

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5 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: This study investigates the role of national culture on the implementation and effectiveness of quality management practices. Specifically, the authors examine the dual roles of two of Hofstede's national culture dimensions (individualism and indulgence) in driving the implementation of people management practices and in moderating the relationship between people management and product quality performance. Design/methodology/approach: The authors’ dataset combines a survey of 976 firms from 22 countries with Hofstede's national culture index. A multi-level analysis, at firm and country levels, is used for investigating the interplay between two dimensions of national culture (individualism and indulgence) on people management practices and product quality performance. Findings: The authors' findings show the negative relationship between indulgence (at country level) and people management practices (at firm level) while individualism (at country level) strengthens the relationship between people management and product quality performance (at firm level). Furthermore, the finding shows that the joint interaction between individualism and indulgence (at country level) moderates the relationship between people management and product quality performance (at firm level) where the relationship is strongest when individualism is high and indulgence is low. Practical implications: Understanding the interplay between national culture and management practices is important for managers in making decisions on the practices managers should implement under different cultural contexts to gain the expected outcomes. Originality/value: The authors' results challenge the universalist view that suggests that quality management practices (in this case people management practices) can be applied in any context effectively to achieve high product quality performance by showing that facets of national culture influence the implementation and effectiveness of people management practices and performance. The results also provide a fresh perspective on the role of indulgence, given that it is the newest dimension in Hofstede's framework. The authors also extend previous studies which commonly only examine the main and not interactive effects of different dimensions of national culture.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)877-897
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Operations and Production Management
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jun 2022


  • Multi-level analysis
  • National culture
  • Quality management

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