What you will study
This module aims to help leaders and managers develop as intercultural mediators who are able to engage with the complexities of the global arena by transforming ideas, goals and practices into forms which are meaningful and workable in local settings; appreciating and understanding difference and avoiding stereotyping. It builds on the groundwork done in MBA stage 1: management perspectives and practice (B716) and complements the strategy, and finance modules by developing an understanding of the ways in which management practices need adaptation in different cultural and institutional contexts. More specifically the learning outcomes of this elective are:
to develop increased critical understanding of cultural and institutional differences between national and regional contexts and their implications for leadership and management
to develop the skills of perspective-taking and reframing that enable you to recast ideas in and challenges in ways which work in different national and regional contexts
to use other cultural and institutional perspectives as a lens to construct a more critical understanding of your own context and management and leadership practice
to develop skills in accessing information on different national and regional contexts and drawing implications for the effective practice of management and leadership in those settings
to develop a foundation for key competencies in managing across cultural and institutional contexts including: cultural intelligence; brokering; and recasting ideas and practices in terms which make sense in particular local contexts.
The target audience is a) managers and leaders either already working in or wishing to work in cross-national settings be they in MNCs, governmental organisations, NGOs, not for profit organisations or SMEs; b) those who need to expand their understanding of the challenges of international management.
The module covers three main themes:
Theme One: Understanding culture’s effects
This theme explores different approaches to understanding cultures. The study materials encourage you to critically engage with these approaches based on your own knowledge and experience. Activities explore different concepts of management and leadership in different cultures and the expectations they raise in different cultural settings.
Theme Two: Understanding the role of social, political and economic institutions
Drawing on a varieties of capitalism approach, this section looks at the ways in which institutions such as labour markets, forms of firm governance, legal systems, differences in the rule of law, and the structure of inter-firm collaboration and competition affect the practices and challenges of leadership and management. Activities encourage you to explore the ways in which the business, social, economic and political environments affect your own experience of leadership and management.
Theme Three: Putting it into practice: cross-cultural leadership capabilities
This theme explores the implications of what you have learned for your own practice and uses, with a series of self-assessment tools to evaluate and assess your own strengths and development needs in relation to the challenges of intercultural leadership and management.
While there is some reading involved in the module, much of the learning is through activities and investigations, on your own and in collaboration with others. These activities will involve you in gathering and interpreting evidence to better understand different cultural settings and in engaging with others to build your own skills in operating in intercultural contexts. A significant proportion of marks are allocated for effective participation in these activities.