The Business Case for Leadership Diversity – and Corporate Culture

Two recent studies show that culture tends to be underestimated as a success factor in large companies and that the leadership style (of at least the CEO) should be different from the existing organisational culture. The combination of the findings reconfirms the business case for a need to tackle Diversity, Culture and Leadership in a comprehensive way.

Based on data collected from 119 CEOs and 337 top management team members in 119 organisations in the U.S. software and hardware industries, researchers found that CEOs who adopt a leadership style similar to that of the organisation’s culture have a negative impact on the firms’ performances. Instead, firms are most effective when the CEO‘s leadership style differs from the organisational culture. This is one more insight that contradicts wide-spread assumptions. The original research was published in The Journal of Applied Psychology.

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