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To what extent can management practices be transferred between countries? The case of human resource management in Vietnam.

Several countries are on their way towards a market-oriented economy but in conditions where most local companies have a dearth of management expertise. To meet the growing pressure of globalization and integration, many local enterprises are keen to apply foreign know-how and practices, especially human resource management (HRM), to enhance competitiveness. Likewise, foreign invested companies face the fundamental question of the transferability of HRM practices, whose success depends on country specifics, into local settings. This paper examines the possibility of applying four management practices (pay for performance, multi-source feedback, involvement and empowerment, self-managed work teams) in the context of Vietnam, with illustrative comparisons with China. It suggests varying degrees of transferability and potential hindering factors, along with practical suggestions for managers and businesses considering management transfers more generally and elsewhere. Importantly, our approach and findings are relevant and applicable to a range of different country managers and businesses, especially those which have been subject to less research and enquiry.

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Source: Journal of World Business 42 (2007) 113–127
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