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Nielsen, Rikke Kristine
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PhD Series No. 24.2014
This dissertation deals with global mindset leadership understood as border- and boundary-crossing leadership within the multinational corporation by exploring the concept of global mindset as both an individual managerial meta-competence, as well as a strategic organizational capability. The research project presented explores the practical and theoretical avenues for working with global mindset as a strategic lever and method of securing business strategy executional agility, which is explored in the context of a single-case study organization, Solar - an internationalizing medium-sized MNC seeking to work in practice with global mindset leadership development and enactment as a strategy execution facilitator. Internationalizing corporations often experience the liability of foreignness when moving into new markets, and in effect suffer a globalization penalty vis-à-vis local competition in different markets. At the same time, they are pushed to consider the potential non-transferability of domestic competitive advantages and business models, when moving into new territory and may have to make adjustments to cater to different customer preferences and other local specificities in a variety of markets simultaneously. Further, international and global collaboration is more complex than local collaboration and as a consequence, corporations need to be better at collaborating in order to receive the same effect compared to domestic operations alone. This is due to the fact that culturally and strategically employees and managers at all hierarchical levels understand each other less, while language barriers may at the same time place a strain on communication and collaboration. Transaction costs rise as corporations move from high-context collaboration with low psychic distance in a domestic setting or between relatively similar groupings, where many things are shared and taken for granted and thus need not be explicated to a low-context communication setting where little or no common ground can be taken for granted. This dissertation argues the case that leadership with a global mindset is relevant for companies and organizations that make strategic use of global mindset as a driver for global business strategy. As such global mindset is seen as strategic global mindset in that the rationale for developing global mindset is as a facilitator of business strategy. The context of the individual company is an indicator for what global mindset means in the particular company, and for who can benefit from it. Global mindset is not seen as generic, but highly contextual when looking at the practical implementation of the concept empirically. The aim of working with global mindset, then, is the optimization of global mindset in relation to the context, the managerial role and the business strategy, not an end in itself.
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