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The process of globalization influences all spheres of life. In business, it increases the global chain role and internationalization of companies’ activities (Sultana, Rashid, Mohiuddin, & Mazumder, 2013). Consequently, the workforce is also becoming multi-cultural. Although it opens new opportunities, the cross-cultural staff is a challenge for a manager. Lack of knowledge in managing cross-cultural employees can lead to efficiency decrease.
Thus, the primary task of a contemporary manager is to provide guidance and support to avoid misunderstandings and achieve high effectiveness of cooperation among cross-culture employees. This research studies the issue of the motivation of cross-culture cooperation and its impact on high performance on the example of Emirates Airlines.
The issue of managing cross-culture differences in general and the significance of this problem in the workplace has become a topic for many studies. Thus, Moran, Abramson, and Moran (2014) provide an analysis of different approaches to management in different cultures.
The authors focus on the differences that determine successful performance in the workplace worldwide. Moreover, the researchers disclose the challenges faced by managers who have to deal with cross-culture workforce. Moran et al. stress the importance of considering cultural peculiarities while managing employees. It is particularly important for the Middle East setting since customs and protocol of business together with other cultural aspects have a significant impact on workforce management.
Branine and Pollard (2010) concentrate on Islamic management principles of human resource management. The researchers provide an analysis of implications for multinationals that operate in Islamic countries. The research provides tools that help to understand the specific features of management in the Arab world. Moreover, the authors disclose the challenges faced by managers while working with cross-cultural employees.
Mellahi and Wood (2001) also investigated the peculiarities of management in Arab countries, Saudi Arabia in particular. They concluded that Saudi Arabia as a leader in the regional economy significantly influences the cultural factors in management. The authors analyze various HRM methods typical of the Middle East. Moreover, they review the opportunities for the elimination of occupational segregation.
Gelfand, Nishii, and Raver (2006) reveal the psychological aspects of cross-culture management. They introduce the issue of cultural tightness-looseness in organizational management. The researchers focus on the significance of the manager’s knowledge of managing a cross-cultural workforce.
Mor, Morris, and Joh (2013) stress the importance of intercultural efficiency of managers while working with the representatives of different cultural backgrounds. The researchers focus on the social cognitive mechanisms that empower the individual performance of employees. the research proved that a cognitive habit of managers positively influences the efficiency of intercultural collaboration.
Sultana et al. (2013) focus on challenges faced by contemporary managers in the context of globalization. A content analysis method used by the investigators revealed the positive influence of cultural diversity management on competitive advantages and organizational effectiveness.
The primary research includes an interview with a manager of Emirates Airlines concerning the peculiarities of managing a cross-culture workforce. The interviewee confirms that many employees represent different cultures in the company he is working for. Also, the manager admits some problems that appear in managing cross-cultural staff. Thus, one of the problems includes language differences and understanding other people’s language in particular.
However, this problem is treated as an opportunity to learn new languages. Sometimes the difficulties appear in the interpretation of certain behaviors that might be acceptable for one culture and treated negatively in another. Nevertheless, this manager treats this challenge as an opportunity for learning and tolerating cultural differences. The interviewee claims that one of the major problems in managing employees from different cultures is tolerance, especially the attempts to tolerate things that might not be normal for some cultures. Frequently, it is very difficult to accept different reactions to diverse situations.
The interviewee suggests some methods to deal with cross-culture workforce that proved their efficiency. First of all, he advises avoiding any preconceptions about people from different cultures. Secondly, he claims it is necessary to treat every situation as it is without bringing the cultural content. Also, he states that is necessary to accept other people and their cultures the way they are without attempts to change them. Finally, the manager suggests tolerating the people who come from different backgrounds and try to appreciate the difference and find positive features to learn from different cultures. The interviewee believes that working in a multicultural environment allows more creativity and diversity.
The research shows that the problem of managing diverse cultures in a workplace is a burning one in the contemporary business sphere. It provides broad opportunities and gives birth to challenges at the same time. The primary research proves that a thoughtful approach to managing cross-culture staff can be efficient. The experience of the interviewee discloses both problems and possibilities in working with cross-cultural staff. However, the positive attitude and appropriate management strategies make the cross-culture working environment an opportunity to learn. Moreover, according to the research participant, it opens new doors for career development.
On the whole, the complicated issue of managing a cross-culture workforce needs careful considerations. The research results can be used for the development of managing strategies to empower efficient cooperation in cross-cultural settings. Finally, further research can be dedicated to the investigation of the employees’ problems in cross-cultural communication and cooperation.
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Branine, M., & Pollard, D. (2010). Human resource management with Islamic management principles: A dialectic for a reverse diffusion in management. Personnel Review, 39(6), 712-727.
Gelfand, M. J., Nishii, L. H., & Raver, J. L. (2006). On the nature and importance of cultural tightness-looseness. Journal of Applied Psychology, 91(6), 1225.
Mellahi, K., & Wood, G. T. (2001). Management in Saudi Arabia. Human resource management in developing countries, 5, 135.
Mor, S., Morris, M., & Joh, J. (2013). Identifying and training adaptive cross-cultural management skills: The crucial role of cultural metacognition. Academy of Management Learning and Education, 12(3), 453-475. Web.
Moran, R. T., Abramson, N. R., & Moran, S. V. (2014). Managing cultural differences. London, UK: Routledge.
Sultana, M., Rashid, M., Mohiuddin, M., & Mazumder, M. (2013). Cross-cultural management and organizational performance: A content analysis perspective. International Journal of Business and Management, 8(8), 133-146. Web.