Management style tends towards the paternalistic as is often found in strongly hierarchical cultures.
However, managers need to be aware of certain strong Filipino characteristics, which underpin personal relationships within the country.
Firstly, people are extremely careful to ensure that others do not suffer embarrassment or any sense of shame (hiya) as a result of their own actions or their inability to meet the expectations of others. It is considered to be very bad behaviour to criticise another in public, as this is the greatest insult that can be given. To be openly criticised in public results in a loss of self-esteem and personal dignity. Any attack on an individual’s self-esteem may have to be revenged.
Therefore, managers are keen to treat subordinates with respect whilst, at the same time, maintaining the dignity of the position of boss. Instructions will be given clearly and precisely and subordinates will be expected to follow those instructions with little or no discussion.
Secondly, relationship bonds run deep in Filipino culture and the manager expects loyalty. In return for this loyalty the boss will look after the interests of those subordinates. It is very much a reciprocal arrangement.
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This World Business Culture profile is designed as an introduction to business culture in Philippines only and a more detailed understanding needs a more in-depth exploration which we can provide through our training and consultancy services.