Business Leadership and Culture

Business Leadership and Culture

National Management Styles in the Global Economy

Björn Bjerke

How do business leaders think as a result of their national culture? This book provides a discussion and comparative analysis of five major cultures – American, Arab, Chinese, Japanese and Scandinavian – and how they reveal themselves in business practice.

Chapter 3: Business Leadership and National Culture

Björn Bjerke

Subjects: business and management, business leadership

Extract

Page 57 3—  Business Leadership and National Culture Managers and Leaders 'Management' is a word used extensively in business literature as well as in business practice today. Its use dates back to the time in the history of industrialization  when owners became separated from administrators, that is, when the former had too many manufacturing sites to handle themselves; so they put 'managers' in charge  to run some of these sites (Jay, 1987, p. 92). Later, the use of the word 'manager' became ubiquitous when ownership was spread over many individuals and institutions, and when such legal business firms as  'Ltd', 'Inc.' and so on were established and individuals were appointed to 'manage' planning, supervising and controlling tasks in those firms. Today the word 'management' stands for almost any type of administration at various business levels (strategic as well as tactic) and different ownership arrangements  (private as well as public), but also administrative positions in nonbusiness organizations such as sports teams, labour unions and government institutions. 'Leadership' and 'management' are rarely today taken as synonyms. Some see leadership as a function of management: 'The managerial function of leading is defined as  the process of influencing people so that they will contribute to organization and group goals' (Koontz and Weihrich, 1988, p. 392). Others see leadership as a 'higher  order or capability' than management: 'A leader is an individual within an organization who is able to influence the attitudes and opinions of others within the  organization; a manager is merely able to...

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