China Management Styles

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Introduction China is a bustling centre for low cost production and as a result, its potential is growing every day. It is argued that, China is moving from a centrally planned economy towards a market economy and internationalization due to increase globalization and market competiveness. Within that context China requires a change in their management styles, and because most of the foreign direct investment comes from the West. Chinese managers need to find a way to integrate tradition with Western theories of management (Zhang et al 2004). This paper aims to investigate different management styles in China. The discussion will be examined through political, cultural and historical perspectives. These factors will allow us to understand to underlying traditions that influence how Chinese organizations are managed. In fact, it can be argued that China has two managerial models now, the modern and the traditional one. Furthermore, China is becoming a global platform for diverse managerial techniques; both external (i.e. exported) and internal (i.e. home grown). The Chinese management style shall be examined through several contexts. Firstly, this study will focus on the traditions that are rooted in Chinese society and how these traditions impact on the Chinese management style. Particular attention will be paid to Guanxi, Confucianism and Daoism as these are the three main traditions that have shaped Chinese culture, values and attitudes over the last thousand years. The impact of politics on management style will then be investigated. As will be discussed, the relationship between managers and communist party officials is vital in China and can determine the success or failure of a firm. Following on from this the sweeping social reforms of the 1980s and the path towards openness shall be assessed. Market liberalisation of this time has had considerable repercussions on the traditional Chinese management style that has resulted in the adoption of a definite...
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