A Developmental Approach to Global Leadership

A DEVELOPMENTAL APPROACH TO GLOBAL LEADERSHIP Joana S. P. Story NOVA School of Business and Economics, Portugal Global leadership development has received increased attention in recent years from practitioners and researchers. Drawing from global mindset, constructive development, and intercultural sensitivity literatures, this article proposes a model for developing global leaders. While developmental activities are challenging for most individuals, it is proposed that training domestic leaders to develop psychological capital will facilitate their growth into global leaders.

Leadership is extremely important for organizational success in this globalized economy. The majority of leaders deal with the reality of the global economy every day. Despite this fact, most leaders have not been trained, educated, and prepared to deal with the complexity of this environment (Black & Mendenhall, 2007). Also, very little research has looked into what it takes to develop a ? global leader? (Smith & Peterson, 2002).

The literature on global leadership provides many articles that state traits, characteristics, and attitudes of successful global leaders; but few attempt to lay a foundation on how to actually develop individuals into global leaders (Hall, Zhu, & Yan, 2001). The lack of research in this area is apparent and it mirrors the void of organizations, as 85% of Fortune 500 executives believe that their organization lacks capable global leaders (Gregersen, Morrison, & Black, 1998; Morrison, 2000).

With the increasingly global environment, leaders are exposed to many complex challenges and what we know about leadership theory and development may no longer be effective in this global context (Robinson & Harvey, 2008). Sloan, Hazucha, and Van Katwyk (2003) asserted that global leadership development should be part of the strategic plan of any organization that wants to flourish in the global market. The purpose of this paper is to provide a model for global leadership development. The model indicates that there are three steps necessary for a leader to become a global leader.

Leaders need to develop a global mindset, develop a self-authored identity, and develop an adaptation worldview. Given that these are challenging developmental activities, it is also proposed that individuals develop psychological capital to facilitate their global leadership. development process. Thus, psychological capital was added as a moderating variable in the model, which means that individuals who have hope, efficacy, resiliency, and optimism will be more likely develop a global mindset, a self-authored identity, and cultural sensitivity.

Global Leadership Global leadership has been defined as ? being capable of operating effectively in a global environment while being respectful of cultural diversity? (Harris, Moran, & Moran, 2004, p. 25). While setting a single definition of global leadership is key in order to study it, the phenomenon it is still hard to understand. The global leadership literature draws from many different fields that don‘t seem to communicate efficiently.

In a review of the literature, Hollenbeck (2001) argued that there are six perspectives scholars have taken when studying global leadership: viewing global leaders as working across cultural and national boundaries; viewing global leadership as cross-cultural leadership; viewing global leadership as expatriate leadership; examining the traits, motivators, attitudes, skills, and personal background to build a profile of what an ideal global leader would look like; arguing that leadership literature doesn‘t differentiate between global and domestic leaders; and finally, looking at adult learning literatures.

International Journal of Leadership Studies, Vol. 6 Iss. 3, 2011 © 2011 School of Global Leadership &Entrepreneurship, Regent University http://www. regent. edu/acad/global/publications/ijls/new/vol6iss3/4_Story_pp375-389. pdf