Indian IT/ITES (information technology/information technology-enabled services) organizations often portray their espousal of an “open” work culture including flatter and flexible structures, comparing this progressive organizational design with the rigid authoritarian and hierarchical structure of traditional Indian workplaces. Yet, even Indian IT/ITES firms operating in the Netherlands fail to truly internalize and enact Western industrialism. Instead, they continue to harbour and exemplify the typical features of Indian workplaces such as high power distance, politicized career progression paths and lack of transparency, reflecting a feudalistic mindset. Far from homogenizing in the global business context, Indian organizations hold on to their ethos when it comes to dealing with Indian employees. This does not mean that we support Hofstede’s static dimension of culture. First, we found that the Dutch or European employees were treated differently in Indian organizations especially in matters of work-life balance. Second, given that outsourcing is a low-cost strategy, many Indian managers had to delegate responsibility to subordinates in order to manage a large number of projects. Third, the interaction between the employees of different cultures highlighted the discrepancies in the discourse of Indian organizations-an aspect which becomes more glaring to Indian onsite employees who then want a better work-life balance and a more consultative and egalitarian relationship with their Indian managers, failing which they moved to Dutch organizations. Even so, rather than culture being static, interaction of employees from different cultures results in reformulating set values, meanings and norms. Finally, though employees welcomed changes to their work life, they were quite conservative with regard to changes in their social life.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Culture, Expatriates, Homogenization, Information technology, The Netherlands
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-981-10-3491-6_15, hdl.handle.net/1765/103060
Rights e-book; not purchased
Citation
Noronha, E. (Ernesto), & Magala, S.J. (2017). Going Dutch, remaining Indian: The work experiences of IT expatriates. In Critical Perspectives on Work and Employment in Globalizing India (pp. 283–303). doi:10.1007/978-981-10-3491-6_15