Managing the Era of Multi-Cultural Leadership

  • M. Rahul Assistant Professor, Mittal School of Business, Lovely Professional University, Phagwara, Punjab, India
  • R. Ganesan Associate Professor, P.G. & Research Department of Commerce, D.G.Vaishnav College, Chennai, India
Keywords: Cross-culture leadership, Leadership (Challenges and Approaches)


Leaders in the global arena are the one who face the challenges never seen before, while coordinating work and managing relationship between team members coming from varied ethnic groups. Globalization has undoubtedly opened up endless growth opportunities for both, businesses and individuals, by collaborating
with each other, but with certain inherent challenges. These challenges are the difference in the cultural background of the team members, which gets predominantly reflected in their behavior at workplace too. The cultural differences exist primarily due to differences in shared values, which form the basis for
difference in perception and practices of decision making by an individual (Hofstede, 1980). Juana Bordas has rightly described that any business that fails to adapt their leadership style aligning with multi-cultural approach will find it difficult to thrive in a more colorful world. Leadership style has witnessed various facets of changing work environment that has demanded from leaders to modify their approach to adapt along and be effective and survive in the ever-changing environment of business (Bordas, 2007).
A cross-culture leader plays a significant role in knitting the diverse workforce into an efficient team; which requires a leader to very well understand the various dimensions of culture. This understanding of the leader enables him to learn about blending of leadership styles to address the challenges of such work environment. This paper is an extended work on 'Leadership in Cross-Cultural Environment – A Comparison of Asian and Non-Asian Managers' (Rahul & Ganesan, 2015). The extended research study has identified that enhanced work experience of cross-culture leaders enables them in effective team management, than the rise in designation, as it results in creation of hierarchical distance between the leaders and subordinates.