Today�s globalisation demands new leadership skills and dimensions, especially in the area of cultural
intelligence. Earley and Mosakowski (2004) explain that cultural competence is more than rote
memorisation of a culture�s practices and beliefs; it involves, among other elements, an adoption of a
culture�s habits and mannerisms. They further elaborate that through the adoption of customs and use
of culturally relevant gestures, global leaders demonstrate to peers they hold them in high enough esteem
to want to emulate them.
In this week�s Collaboration you will engage with your colleagues in a further exploration of the global
business environment and the leadership practices within. You will analyse cultural competencies based
on the �Diagnosing Your Cultural Intelligence�
The dissolution of economic boarders has been the result of many business operations getting
global. As more organisations get involved into mergers and acquisitions, one is highly likely to
suppose that enhanced integration between nations, and the internationalization of organizations,
would lead to the disappearance of cultural disparities. In reality, as economic boundaries get
shattered, cultural barriers are usually erected, an aspect that presents challenges and prospects
for the business (Aggarwa, R. 2011). However, various global leadership standards have been
identified to be rather effective when applied specifically in a multinational setting. For instance,
effective leadership in a global context should always be informed by the firm’s vision,
mobilizing an individual towards change, serving by building emotional bonds and also by
nurturing individual for future responsibility (Aggarwa, R. 2011). And yet leadership within a
multicultural setting can only be effective if the leadership is willing to recognize cultural
constrains. This is to say, leaders can only become influential if they are able to acknowledge
limitations presented by cultural disparities and by adapting to the culture of a host company.
Challenges and Prospects of International Leadership
International leadership has become a serious challenge in the prose of global commerce, social
issues as well as HRM and development. How to undertake international leadership proficiently
in the increasingly intricate environment is critical to global business and workforce
management. While technological evolutions present the prospect of global economy, in terms
of how communication and business is executed, cross-cultural managers should put into
consideration at global change as a challenge that comes with prospects for corporate and
individual development (Ang and Van Dyne, 2008). Moreover, to be able to adapt rather fast to
global transformation, global business educators and purveyors are expected to react swiftly to
the effects of demographics, innovation and internationalization with a view to offering specific
job skill development, when it comes to international leadership, work related ethics and endless
learning (Aggarwa, 2011).
With an increasing demand for information-based organizations, it has become the obligation for
both employees and the leadership to cultivate the success of workplace learning and career
growth. International leadership in this case, is about building their interpersonal dexterity to
manage racial gridlocks that have occurred and to develop persons and groups in the workplace.
An effective global leadership should recognize what leadership is required and executed it
accordingly (Ulrich & Smallwood, 2012). Persons with diverse cultural backdrops might differ
in their view points and expectations of leadership. Owing to the largely Western as well as
individualistic viewpoint, the extent to which leadership conjectures especially from the west is
executed internationally is a subject of discussion in various quotas. Eastern leadership, for
instance is the complete oppose from western leadership in terms of cultural customs and
To cultivate a timeless leadership, global leaders should demonstrate competence in cross-
cultural consciousness and practice. It is therefore imperative to comprehend the importance of
leadership and what is expected of it, and to be able to enhance and sustain competent leadership
approaches for lasting change (Ulrich & Smallwood, 2012).
Creating Cultural intelligence
Livermore (2011) contends that organizations across the world can only hope to create cultural
intelligence pegged on four drivers namely; drive, knowledge, strategy and action.
For organization to become CQ compliant, they need motivation to learn and acclimatize in an
environment with diverse cultures. So it also starts with getting interested in knowing what
brings to the fore a certain culture. To enhance the underlying motivation, exploration of new
cultures and communities is necessary. Organizations should create voluntary projects
employees to interact with various departments, firms and cultural groups in bid to building
confidence (Earley and Ang, 2013).
While CQ is beyond learning different culture for the sake of learning, being acquainted with
how culture shapes one’s behavior, values and belief system is critical. This is to say
organizations should encourage employees within a multicultural setting to learn about a culture
they find more appealing. This knowledge base will present them with the general outlook of
cultural disparities; moreover, it will enhance their understanding of how persons from diverse
cultures interact. It starts with the need to understand a country’s chronological account when
relocating there, or when assembling a team of local employees (Livermore, 2011).
Organizations that expect to realize this goal have no option but to come up with a strategy that
guides their bid to enhance CQ across the company. This approach should stem from what
employees have learned from their cultural consciousness, while making strong, cultural
schedules in the end. For instance, an employee from South East Asia may consider that saying
No is being discourteous (Bhagat, 2006). Why? It would be critical for instance to have a close
understanding of how masculine and individualized societies react at any given point. Employees
from the west for instance, are brought up with capitalistic mindset where individual success
matter a great deal over collectivism. In the same breadth, it requires any company to understand
the employees from the East for instance, have been cultured in a masculine society where group
efforts are valued over individual input. With this background, it becomes important to keep
notes of cultural observations in a multiplicity setting as the best to resolving cross-cultural
problems. Ultimately, CQ is about enhancing cultural interaction at work.
This is the last component of cultural intelligence that is associated with behavior and especially
the technique used in adapting when things do not work as planned. In most instances, cross
cultural interactions are not always smooth, as such, it’s important to think while being in
control. For example, an organization should learn business etiquette of the culture they are
working to present them with that culture not just business but also social practice (Livermore,
2011). When it comes to observing a different culture, the organization should keenly
concentrate to way is going on around. For instance, conversion style, voice intonations and
body language. This will help the organization a detailed understanding and effectively interact
with that culture.
While the 21 st century is increasingly becoming global, our common human is shrinking day by
day, as we get closer and closer. In this respect, as the world gets more integrated, cross-cultural
intelligence becomes a critical element. This is evident in modern organizations where
employees stem from a diversity of backgrounds. At that point, the issue of CQ has a huge
bearing when it comes to corporate leadership and management (Ang and Van Dyne, 2008).
Based on the paper CQ allows employees to adapt easily within a multiplicity environment. With
CQ, employees are able to sermon cultural strategic thought processes, motivation and
behavioral thinking. Managers on the other will be faced with the challenge of working in a
multicultural setting. Without CQ, the manager may find it hard to identify the subtle cultural
disparity that is usually the genesis of many organization hitches.
Aggarwa, R. 2011. Developing a global mindset: Integrating demographics, sustainability,
technology, and globalization. Journal of Teaching in International Business, 22(1), 51- 69.
Earley, P.C. and Ang, S. 2013. Cultural Intelligence: Individual Interactions across Cultures.
Stanford Business Books: Stanford.
Ang, S. and Van Dyne L (eds). 2008. “The Handbook of Cultural Intelligence.” New York: ME
Livermore, David A. 2011. “The Cultural Intelligence Difference.” New York: AMACOM,
Bhagat, Rabi S. 2006. “Rev. of Early and Ang, Cultural Intelligence, and Hooker, Working
Across Cultures”. Academy of Management Review 31 (2): 489–93.
Ulrich, D., & Smallwood, N. 2012. What is leadership? In W. H. Mobley, Ying Wang, Ming
Li (ed.) Advances in Global Leadership (Advances in Global Leadership, Volume 7),
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.9-36.