The fundamentals of management that apply to a developed culture like the United States might not apply to a less highly developed culture like Brazil, for instance. Management practice is even further culture bound to the extent that its transferability might be problematic within institutions other than business (e.g., education and government) in the same national culture. However, even culture bound theorists admit that only certain aspects of management practice lack universality. These aspects mainly involve interpersonal relationships between diverse groups in business.
Farmer and Richman have developed an environmental model of comparative management that considers the external factors which affect the efficient operation of an organization. Farmer and Richman contend that as long as the external environment for firms are similar, management theorists need not focus on external constraints. However, in cases where the external environment differs significantly, overwhelming pressures often come to bear on internal management. Management theory that does not consider all the crucial external variables is of limited value.
The environmental model of Farmer and Richman considers a variety of external constraints including (1) educational variables, (2) sociological-cultural variables, (3) political and legal variables, and (4) economic variables. These external constraints comprise the m