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Title: Heritage and transformation : the effect of traditional Chinese thinking on human resource practice in mainland China
Author: Yuan, Li
ISNI:       0000 0004 2710 3990
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2011
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This thesis seeks to address not only what and how but also the why issues that accounts for the HR practices with Chinese characteristics through both inside-out and outside-in approaches.  This thesis also aim to find out whether there are any lessons western firms can learn from the Chinese approach to people management which is deeply embedded in Chinese traditional thinking and its core values. Semi-structured personal interviews were conducted with 21 senior and middle/top-level Chinese male and female managers.  Findings are presented in narrative form through in-depth direct statements of interviewees to provide authentic examples of how Chinese managers conceptualize and practice Chinese traditional thinking and core values in HR management.  Results demonstrate that Chinese traditional thinking comprise unique features that might be described as holistic and naïve, fuzzy and processual, indirect and long-term, and that this approach translates into an adherence to five core values, which are He (harmony «!»), Zhong Yong (the Doctrine of Mean «!»), Hierarchy, Superiority and Loyalty («!»), Guanxi and Renqing (personal connections, relationship and human sympathy/favour «!») and Face (Mianzi and Lian «!») which have significantly affected contemporary Chinese HR practices. The research shows that the penchant for harmony is responsible for the steady and smooth development strategies of Chinese organisations; a relatively mild approach to personnel reforms; harmonious interpersonal relationships; nominal performance appraisal systems; and the importance of leaders as the role model.  The principle of Zhongyong accounts for the preference for modest and reserved people in recruitment and selection; the harmonious and balanced relationships between superiors and subordinates; a relatively mild, lenient and gentle leadership style; and the soft, flexible and conflict-free way of communication and negotiation in Chinese HRM practices.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Human resources