OLEAD 410 Blog #1
Pennsylvania State University
Global leadership is “an extraordinary capacity to unify a global workforce around a single purposeful vision, through demonstration of personal mastery, thinking globally, anticipating opportunity and using shared leadership networks” (Greenberg, 2003). Global leadership is something that is difficult to become successful at. For some, being a leader within a profession they understand well is easy. It also helps being in an area of the world where you understand the culture and the diversity that comes with being a leader in that region. It’s a big step from there to become a good global leader because everywhere around the world there are many different points of views, cultural differences, and different types of interpretations when conveying messages.
The company I am using as an example of good global leadership is General Electric. Their Chairmen and CEO Jeffrey Immelt has developed the proper mindset and approach to becoming a great global leader for this organization. GE has their products made within a technology factory not only for a single region but for the entire world. For this company to be successful they needed to incorporate other global leaders and employ global workers to help better understand the culture and diversity of that region. By making decisions to incorporate global diversity into their company has helped them build relationships that impact not only United States citizens but also many other countries citizens.
Jeffery Immelt CEO of GE says “We run the company so that 300,000 people feel the chairman might enter their world at any time. I spend roughly 40% of my time on people issues; so, do our other top leaders.” (Stephen Green, 2014) I like how he spends almost half of his time focusing on people-oriented issues and that these employees feel that the CEO doesn’t put himself on a pedestal. He would rather walk the front lines with the hard-working diverse employees and build personal relationships with as many as he can. That is one trait a global leader should be focused. By placing yourself shoulder to shoulder with the people who keep GE production moving gives the employees a sense of comfort and respect. They realize that this leader does not put himself above others and would rather hear suggestions to help overall better their work environment and provide greater motivation throughout all cultures.
A great global leader can understand the differences within a group and the difference between a group as well. As a company leader you need to know the diversity you are working with within your regional factory by developing cohesion and mutual understanding within your own group allows you to better understand the differences between a group. GE has done this well by making HR more than just something that’s used when needed like most companies. Instead Jeffery explains that they make it a forefront focus, and this helps new coming workers and other leaders from different locations feel incorporated and encouraged to become part of an organization that takes pride in cross cultural environments and good work. Overall, a lot goes into being a good global leader. You need to start with understanding each region’s cultural beliefs and norms and from their you can make the right decisions on how to incorporate individuals from that region into your company. Which will then make a great cross-cultural environment where no one feels alone.
Stephen Green, . (2014, August 01). In Search of Global Leaders. Retrieved September 21, 2020, from https://hbr.org/2003/08/in-search-of-global-leaders
Goldsmith, M., Greenberg, C.L., Robertson, A., & Hu-Chan, M. (2003). Global leadership: The NEXT GENERATION. New York: Prentice Hall.
Northouse, P. G. (2015). Leadership: Theory and practice. Los Angeles: Sage.