One tree in a forest will never survive when the wind comes: Leading across cultures and its impact
Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Research questions: What are the biggest differences between the Swedish culture and the Chinese culture? How does leadership from one culture affect followers in a different culture? What strategies and tools does the management apply in order to manage cultural differences?
Purpose: The purpose of this thesis is to understand the biggest differences between Swedish and Chinese culture. Furthermore, the purpose is to understand if and how cultural differences affect the employees within a foreign company. Our ambition is therefore to provide information on how leadership from another culture is having an impact on the followers. Additionally, we aim to present what strategies and tools that management can take into account when dealing with cultural differences.
Method: This research has an inductive approach. Further, we have used a qualitative research strategy where we have conducted 12 semi-structured interviews with leaders and followers from Atlas Copco, IKEA and Tetra Pak.
Conclusion: The conclusions demonstrate that the biggest differences between the Swedish and the Chinese culture are equality versus hierarchy, different ways of communicating and relationship building. Additionally, the conclusion shows that followers get affected by having a leader from a different culture. They get affected in how they communicate, the way relationships are built and how they create trust. Meeting, teamwork and empowerment are also factors that changes when having a leader from a different culture. Further, strategies and tools for the management have also been concluded. Examples of strategies and tools are to create an understanding of the other culture, emerge the cultures together, be transparent and open, be flexible and also do not label a person with a different culture.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 82 p.
Culture, Cultural differences, Leadership, Followership, China, Sweden.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-52850OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-52850DiVA: diva2:932183
Subject / course
Business Administration - Organization Leadership
Human Resource Management - Personnel Management and Organisational Development, 180 credits
Arvidsson, Kjell, Lektor, prefekt
Lundgren, Mikael, Lektor