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Cross-Cultural Management

Cross-Cultural Management
Essential Concepts

Fourth Edition

January 2017 | 336 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Cross-Cultural Management: Essential Concepts, Fourth Edition introduces readers to the fundamentals of cross-cultural management by exploring the influence of culture on interpersonal interactions in organizational settings and examining the ever-increasing number of cross-cultural management challenges that global managers face in today’s workplace. Instead of taking a country specific approach, authors David C. Thomas and Mark F. Peterson offer a predominantly psychological perspective—focusing on the interactions of people from different cultures in organizational settings. This approach shows readers the effects culture has on a wide variety of cross-cultural interactions across organizational contexts.

Chapter 1: Introduction: The Challenging Role of the Global Manager

What Global Managers Do

Evaluating Cross-Cultural Management Studies


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 2: Describing Culture: What It Is and Where It Comes From
Features of Culture

Culture: A Working Definition

Why Cultures Differ and Persist

Debates Surrounding the Concept of Culture

Culture and Social Groups


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 3: Comparing Cultures: Systematically Describing Cultural Differences
Kluckhohn and Strodtbeck Framework

Hofstede’s Study

Schwartz Value Survey

Trompenaars’s Dimensions

The GLOBE Study

Individualism and Collectivism

Social Axioms

Culture as Sources of Guidance

Cultural Distance

Limitations of Country Culture Research

Use of the Frameworks


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 4: How Culture Works: Fundamentals of Cross-Cultural Interaction
Social Cognition

Cultural Schemas

Cultural Scripts and Norms

Selective Perception

Perceived Similarity and Attraction

Stereotypic Expectations

Differential Attributions

Cross-Cultural Interaction Model

Self-Schemas and Motivation


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 5: The Manager as Decision Maker: Cross-Cultural Dimensions of Decision-Making
Rational Decision-Making

Cultural Differences in the Optimization Model

Limits to Rationality

Cultural Constraints on Rationality


Motivational Biases in Decision-Making

Selection and Reward Allocation Decisions

Ethical Dilemmas in Decision-Making


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 6: The Manager as Negotiator: Communicating and Negotiating Across Cultures
Cross-Cultural Communication Process


Communication Styles

Other Language Considerations

Language Pragmatics

Nonverbal Communication

Negotiation and Conflict Resolution Across Cultures


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 7: The Manager as Leader: Motivation and Leadership across Cultures
Motivation Across Cultures

Work Goals

Work Centrality and Organizational Commitment

Designing Motivating Jobs


Western Leadership Theory

Non-Western Theories of Leadership

Integrated Cross-Cultural Model of Leadership

Implications for the Practice of Leadership


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 8: The Challenge of Multicultural Work Groups and Teams
Work Groups

Work Group Effectiveness

Culture’s Influence on Work Groups

Culture’s Effect in Different Group Structures and Tasks

Global Virtual Teams

Organizational Context and Culturally Diverse Work Groups

Managing Multicultural Work Groups


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 9: The Challenge of International Organizations: Structure and Culture

Organizational Designs

Culture and Organizational Structure

Informal Organization

Organizing in Multinational Organizations

Relationship of the MNO to Its Members


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 10: The Challenge of International Assignments
The Role of Expatriates

Individual Staffing Decisions

Definitions of Success

Adjustment–Performance Relationship

Factors Affecting Expatriate Success


Outcomes of Overseas Assignments and Global Careers


Questions for Discussion

Chapter 11: The Challenge of Managing Across Cultures in the Future
The Changing Environment of Business

The Adaptation of Organizations and People

The Development of Global Managers


Questions for Discussion

Name Index
Subject Index
Subject Index


Instructor Resource Site

Password-protected Instructor Resources include the following:

  • A Microsoft® Word® test bank is available containing multiple choice, true/false, and open-ended questions for each chapter. The test bank provides you with a diverse range of pre-written options as well as the opportunity for editing any question and/or inserting your own personalized questions to effectively assess students’ progress and understanding.
  • Editable, chapter-specific Microsoft® PowerPoint® slides offer you complete flexibility in easily creating a multimedia presentation for your course.


Key features


  • Each chapter has been extensively revised and updated with current references to reflect the most contemporary thinking on chapter topics.
  • An increased emphasis on understanding the mechanisms of cross-cultural interactions helps readers make connections between the factors affecting performance of all work groups and the culture influencing these groups.
  • Enhanced coverage of language issues offers readers strategies for improving communication in multinational companies (Ch. 6)
  • Best practices for transferring knowledge across cultures (Ch. 9) have been added to give readers clear instructions for developing stronger communication skills when relaying information to their global counterparts.
  • Expanded coverage of cross-generational considerations (Ch. 11) prepares readers to manage employees of all ages.
  • New discussions about the relationship between immigration and international management (Ch. 11) give readers a glimpse into the changing environment of business and the effects immigration has on the future of management.  
  • New and updated examples, statistics, discussion questions, and references offer readers the latest research on cross-cultural management.


  • The text opens with fundamental material on culture and cross-cultural research that helps the reader understand and interpret the remainder of the book.
  • The clear focus is on the interactions of people from different cultures in organizational settings. Rather than a country specific approach, this approach helps the reader gain an understanding of the effect of culture across a variety of cultural and organizational contexts.

  • Comprehensive references and indexes offer readers the opportunity to follow up on areas of most interest.

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 2

Chapter 4

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