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Global leadership: Western curricula needs to be attuned to Eastern culture

Global leadership: Western curricula needs to be attuned to Eastern culture

By In dr lily kelly-radford, global leaders, global learning, training programs, . . . On March 31, 2017


For global leadership development, Western-style curricula continues to be in demand in Asia, but as Lily Kelly-Radford writes in Chief Learning Officer, it needs to be carefully attuned to local culture in order to be effective. What should you look for in a global learning engagement? Read on…

Whether conducting in-house learning initiatives or designing MBA curriculums, CLOs should become familiar with Eastern complexities around family, nationalism and degrees of personal empowerment — all of which must be negotiated for successful learning engagements. The West offers many cutting-edge leadership strategies, but to remain relevant, they need to be presented using localized lenses.

Lily’s work in Asia is extensive. Her article draws on decades of global leadership experience, beginning with the Center for Creative Leadership and continuing to her Executive Development Group role as an executive coach and adjunct faculty member at leading international business schools.

The CLO article addresses potential disconnects that might occur when teachers overlook cultural differences. For example:

Risk and innovation — elements commonly addressed in executive education — are tolerated differently according to culture. In Asia, stability is greatly valued. This is counter to the concepts that emerge when teaching risk, innovation and change management. One must teach these subjects in a way that helps people tolerate the anxiety they feel when things are not always predictable.

For more information about global leadership development and our work in Asia, the Middle East and Africa, contact us here.


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