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Leaders Need A Global Mindset. Prof. Dr. Andrea Schenker-Wicki University of Zurich Dean Executive MBA Corporate University Forum, Zurich February 9, 2012. Agenda. Why leaders need … What is … How to develop …. ?. a global mindset. Business is going global.

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leaders need a global mindset

Leaders Need A Global Mindset

Prof. Dr. Andrea Schenker-Wicki

University ofZurich

Dean Executive MBA

Corporate University Forum, Zurich

February 9, 2012

  • Whyleadersneed …
  • Whatis …
  • Howtodevelop …





business is going global
Business isgoing global
  • Political bordersbecomeless relevant
  • Economicinterdependeciesareheightened
  • Cultural differencesare a centralissue


11.8 Mio. results on globalization


480 of Fortune 500 companiesareoperating in China

acceleration of business cycles
  • Cumulationofrisk and uncertainty

T = Oscillationperiod

y (t)

Y = Amplitude

T = Time

leadership across cultural borders
  • Considerculturaldifferences in organizations
  • Also SME‘saremore and moreoperatingglobally
  • Leadersneedtohaveculturalresilience

Workforce Mobility Ass.

Culture playsimportant

role in business

Swiss SME‘s

Export shareof 53.6%

in 2009

global mindset
Global mindset
  • „Set ofdeeplyheldinternal mental images and assumptions, which individuals developthrough a continuousprocessoflearningexperience“ (Herbert Paul)
  • „Abilitytoavoid the simplicityofassuming all culturesare the same, and at the same time, not beingparalyzedby the complexityofitsdifferences “ (Herbert Paul)

Hasno global mindset…

(Homer Simpson)

the best leaders
The bestleaders…?
  • …arefriendswiththeirsubordinates but makedecisions on theirown
  • …competewiththeirowndirectreports and makesuretheyarebetterthanothers
  • …speakhonestly, but takesintoaccountothers‘ status
  • …useindirectlanguage and metaphorsrahterthangetstraightto the point
  • …avoidtakingrisks

PDI Power Distance

IDV Individualism/Group Focus

MAS Masculinity/Femininity


Source: http://geert-hofstede.com

change of leadership orientations
Change ofleadershiporientations
  • Shifttowardsmoregrouporientedleadership
  • Focus on hard and soft issues
  • Leadershipisaboutinfluence

Source: Tichy 1992

conditions for a global mindset
Conditionsfor a global mindset

Social Capital





Becomfortablewithbeinguncomfortable in uncomfortableenviromnents

how to develop a global mindset
Howtodevelop a global mindset


the worldworks

Integration ofnewknowledge and the developmentof a newmindset

Development of a Global Mindset

Exposuretodiversity and novelty



Source: Gupta/Govindarajan/Wang 2008


executive mba university of zurich
Executive MBA University ofZurich
  • „Ourmanagersneedtobemoreeffectivewhenoperating in different businesscultures“ (EMBA UZH survey)
  • Coursemodules in Zurich
  • Culture and itsConsequences
  • Doing Business in…
  • India, China, Japan, U.S., LatinAmerica, Eastern Europe, Russia, Middle East, Africa…
  • Study Trips
  • USA
  • China (Shanghai)
  • India (Hyderabad)
  • Africa (tbd)

Business Schools

Aalto University, Cambridge University, Fudan University, Indian School of Business,

INSEAD, Stanford University, Wageningen University, Yale School of Management,

University of Zagreb

leaders need a global mindset1
Leadersneed a global mindset
  • Sense ofmarket AND culturalfeasibility
  • Business Schools canhelpexecutivestodevelop a global mindset
  • Thankyou!
  • Prof. Dr. Andrea Schenker-Wicki
  • University ofZurich
  • Dean Executive MBA
  • [email protected]
  • www.emba.uzh.ch