If we explore the Slovakian culture through the lens of the 6-D Model©, we can get a good overview of the deep drivers of Slovakian culture relative to other world cultures.
This dimension deals with the fact that all individuals in societies are not equal – it expresses the attitude of the culture towards these inequalities amongst us. Power Distance is defined as the extent to which the less powerful members of institutions and organisations within a country expect and accept that power is distributed unequally.
With a score of 100 points Slovakia is at the highest end of this dimension compared to other countries. Remember that it is possible to score more than 100 points as Slovakia was not a part of the original survey. In societies scoring high on Power Distance it is perfectly accepted that some people have more power than others. It is accepted and expected that these people also use their power. Not in a negative way but to create clarity and structure for people around them. The Ideal boss can therefore be compared with a “good father” who supervises you, is highly visible and tells you what to do. Hierarchical organizations are normal. A key issue for foreigners to understand is that in spite of the very high score on PDI, a manager still has to prove him or herself in order to make people respect and accept decisions from above or the (foreign) headquarter. Visibility and showing results is key.
The fundamental issue addressed by this dimension is the degree of interdependence a society maintains among its members. It has to do with whether people´s self-image is defined in terms of “I” or “We”. In Individualist societies people are supposed to look after themselves and their direct family only. In Collectivist societies people belong to ‘in groups’ that take care of them in exchange for loyalty.
Slovakia, with a score of 52, is right in the middle of this dimension, thus it points to no clear preference.
A high score (Masculine) on this dimension indicates that the society will be driven by competition, achievement and success, with success being defined by the winner / best in field – a value system that starts in school and continues throughout organisational life.
A low score (Feminine) on the dimension means that the dominant values in society are caring for others and quality of life. A Feminine society is one where quality of life is the sign of success and standing out from the crowd is not admirable. The fundamental issue here is what motivates people, wanting to be the best (Masculine) or liking what you do (Feminine).
At 100 Slovakia is a strongly Masculine society – highly success oriented and driven. It is important to be regarded as successful and to reach your goals. Status is an important aspect in this, and of course being able to show which status you have. Status symbols like cars, impressive houses, clothes etc. play a big role. People work hard to achieve a high living standard and being able to “show their achievements”. Long working hours and dedication to work are needed in order to achieve this.
The dimension Uncertainty Avoidance has to do with the way that a society deals with the fact that the future can never be known: should we try to control the future or just let it happen? This ambiguity brings with it anxiety and different cultures have learnt to deal with this anxiety in different ways. The extent to which the members of a culture feel threatened by ambiguous or unknown situations and have created beliefs and institutions that try to avoid these is reflected in the score on Uncertainty Avoidance.
With an intermediate score of 51 on this dimension, Slovakia shows no clear preference.
Long Term Orientation
This dimension describes how every society has to maintain some links with its own past while dealing with the challenges of the present and future, and societies prioritise these two existential goals differently. Normative societies. which score low on this dimension, for example, prefer to maintain time-honoured traditions and norms while viewing societal change with suspicion. Those with a culture which scores high, on the other hand, take a more pragmatic approach: they encourage thrift and efforts in modern education as a way to prepare for the future.
With a high score of 77, it is clear that Slovakia has a pragmatic culture. In societies with a pragmatic orientation, people believe that truth depends very much on situation, context and time. They show an ability to adapt traditions easily to changed conditions, a strong propensity to save and invest. thriftiness and perseverance in achieving results.
One challenge that confronts humanity, now and in the past, is the degree to which small children are socialized. Without socialization we do not become “human”. This dimension is defined as the extent to which people try to control their desires and impulses, based on the way they were raised. Relatively weak control is called Indulgence” and relatively strong control is called “Restraint”. Cultures can, therefore, be described as Indulgent or Restrained.
A low score of 28 on this dimension means that Slovakia has a culture of Restraint. Societies with a low score in this dimension have a tendency to cynicism and pessimism. Also, in contrast to Indulgent societies, Restrained societies do not put much emphasis on leisure time and control the gratification of their desires. People with this orientation have the perception that their actions are Restrained by social norms and feel that indulging themselves is somewhat wrong.