Chinese Corporate Management and Business Traditions

Topic: Management
Words: 13469 Pages: 50


This dissertation aims to understand the impact of culture and tradition on corporate management and leadership in China. The justification for undertaking this review is to understand unique characteristics of contemporary business traditions in China that affect its global business environment. The objectives of this study seek to enhance relationships between foreign and local investors in China, identify the dominant business cultures and leadership models in the country, and assess their philosophical roots, value systems, norms, and effects on knowledge management. Data was collected from 197 respondents working in three Chinese companies using the survey questionnaire method. Additional evidence was collected from a secondary research analysis that included a review of articles published between the years 2017 and 2022. The findings of the investigation revealed that China’s business culture has Confucianism roots. Knowledge management equally emerged as a pillar of cultural engagement in China and its impact on the country’s cultural development was confined to the adoption of new technologies in the country’s business environment.



Globalization is a common catchphrase in business studies and academia. It is associated with the exchange of goods and services across international borders and jurisdictions (García-Canal et al., 2018). The sheer potential for profitability and market expansion associated with global trade has prompted companies from around the world to venture into new markets around the world (Pai, 2021). Currently, these firms are exploiting the potential for expanding their global networks in emerging markets because of the over-saturation of developed economies by existing and legacy businesses (Roy and Srivastava, 2017). Despite the optimism of reaping the rewards of venturing into emerging markets, the potential that international trade offers to MNCs cannot guarantee their success in new markets (García-Canal et al., 2018). Instead, the strength of strategies that firms employ to exploit these opportunities determine the probabilities of success for these MNCs.

Expanding into new markets is a natural aspiration for growing businesses. However, a firm’s ability to harness the potential of expanding into new markets will determine how well it copes with the challenges of growth (Pai, 2021). Regulatory compliance, business rivalry, and cultural barriers are some of the issues that may prevent MNCs from operating optimally in new markets (Gehlen, Marx and Reckendrees, 2020). By focusing on competitive rivalry alone, research studies show that being a market leader in the global market is a function of several factors (Al-Kwifi, Farha and Zaraket, 2020). They can be categorized into two groups – internal and external considerations.

Internal considerations represent issues that stem from within a company, such as corporate culture and business traditions. Comparatively, external factors are linked to problems emanating from outside of a firm. They may include changes in regulatory environment, political factors, global economic outlook, and demographic changes (García-Canal et al., 2018). If we analyze internal factors affecting corporate success, corporate management and leadership models emerge as having the greatest impacts on a firm’s internationalization strategy (Roy and Srivastava, 2017). In the context of this review, corporate management refers to the practice of running an organization’s activities. It involves several tasks, including planning, data collection, and strategy implementation (García-Canal et al., 2018). At the same time, leadership is closely associated with the concept of corporate management because both concepts are complementary (Roy and Srivastava, 2017). Relative to this description, leadership is defined as a skill that involves the practice of influencing or guiding people to perform tasks that are beneficial to an organization or themselves (Khan et al., 2020). Therefore, on the basis that both concepts promote good governance, corporate culture and organizational leadership are critical tools for improved performance.

Based on the above insights, corporate culture and leadership models form part of the internal factors influencing a company’s success in global trade. However, there is diversity in opinion regarding the manner these internal issues are addressed (Gehlen, Marx and Reckendrees, 2020).For example, visionaries subscribe to different leadership styles based on their unique internal and external organizational circumstances (Godelier, 2020). At the same time, when combined with corporate culture, leadership creates a force within an organization that influences people’s behaviors, practices, norms and values (Gehlen, Marx and Reckendrees, 2020). This interaction creates conditions for developing corporate cultures and business traditions that fundamentally guide the behaviors of different stakeholders in an organization. In this context of the analysis, a corporate culture refers to a combination of beliefs and attitudes that shape how employees in an organization interact with one another (Khan et al., 2020). These cultures are often transmitted from one set of workers to another using business traditions. Relative to this statement, Meng (2021) defines business traditions as the transfer of customs or beliefs across various generations of workers to sustain the overall culture, as described above.

The success of firms in the corporate world is a product of several factors stemming from the effects of sustaining specific cultural practices using self-perpetuating business traditions. Corporate management and leadership models emerge, as an overriding force comprising a collection of traditions and cultural practices that are specific to an organization (Duncan, 2020). In this study, the importance of evaluating the success of MNCs using corporate management and leadership models is explored from an international trade perspective. The context of the discussion is on corporate culture and business traditions as tools for understanding the effects of culture and leadership models in international trade.

Research Problem

As international and local businesses interact with one another within this globalized system of commerce, the pursuit of successful business outcomes remains a core desire for many of them (Bu et al., 2021). In this regard, they are encouraged to understand prevailing business cultures and traditions in their host countries to avoid the operational and administrative risks of operating in unfamiliar markets (Rowley and Oh, 2019). This concern is poignant among international investors who subscribe to a different business culture from that practiced in the host country.

The need to understand the importance of cultural diversity in corporate governance emerges when foreign and local investors interact in a global market. In business, this goal is enshrined in the quest for companies to implement good corporate management and leadership practices for enhanced productivity (Rowley and Oh, 2019). The main idea advanced in this quest for better outcomes is to harness existing business traditions and culture to implement effective corporate management and leadership practices (Bu et al., 2021). In this review, the concept of corporate management refers to processes associated with leading or directing a company’s core activities (Rowley and Oh, 2019). Several areas of operational performance are influenced by the implementation of sound corporate management principles, including planning, decision-making, and strategy implementation (Hela, 2021). Consequently, it is crucial to acknowledge the powerful role played by culture and traditions in influencing business outcomes.

In this study, the relationship between organizational culture, leadership models and business traditions is examined within the context of the Chinese business environment. China has successfully branded itself as the world’s manufacturing hub. This perception has attracted several Multinational Companies (MNCs) and international investors to the Asian nation (Rowley and Oh, 2019). The investors have different motivations for expanding into this market, but exploiting the relatively low cost of labor in the country has been a key attraction (Łasak and van der Linden, 2019). This trend has highlighted the need to understand the nature of local Chinese culture and its impact on foreign businesses. In this context of the review, culture is linked with corporate governance and leadership models to make decisions aimed at boosting global business success (Demirtas, 2020). At the same time, the impact of leadership on business outcomes is analyzed within the limits of international trade to understand the effects of organizational culture and business traditions on corporate success.

Research Aim

The aim of this study is to investigate the effects of culture, business traditions, and leadership models on corporate management. The investigation is contextualized in a global business setting characterized by cultural diversity and a high presence of multinational companies willing to set up businesses in new markets. The focus of the investigation is designed to facilitate international business synergy between local and foreign business entities in new markets.

Objectives of Study

A preliminary investigation of the research topic highlighted philosophy, cultural norms/values, and knowledge management as sources of cultural development. These findings were relevant in developing the objectives of the study, which seek to understand dominant cultural types, the philosophical underpinning of cultural development in China, knowledge management practices adopted in the state, and preferred models of leadership. A list of the main objectives of the investigation appears below.

  1. To identify leadership models that underpin Chinese business traditions and culture
  2. To describe the dominant business culture in China
  3. To investigate the importance of Confucianism on the evolution of Chinese business culture and leadership practices
  4. To investigate the impact of Chinese business culture and leadership models on knowledge management in China

The above-mentioned critical areas of analysis will be used to anchor the investigation in scholarly texts.

Research Questions

As highlighted in this chapter, the present study follows a case study research framework where discussions about culture and leadership models will be confined to the Chinese business context. The research questions underpinning this investigation were developed with this principle in mind:

  1. Which leadership models are consistent with Chinese business traditions and culture?
  2. What is the dominant business culture in China?
  3. To what extent has Confucianism played a role in the evolution of Chinese business culture and leadership practices?
  4. What impact has changes in knowledge management impacted Chinese business culture and leadership models?

Justification of Study

Examining the influence of culture and leadership models on business performance is important in enhancing the relationship between local and international investors in global trade. The present study seeks to identify unique cultural dynamics and leadership practices of China that impact investor relations in the country. The analysis is relevant to understanding the growth of international trade between China and other countries. The case study illustrates the challenges that international investors experience when doing business in a culturally diverse world (Rowley and Oh, 2019). The research is aimed at identifying the most dominant cultural practices and leadership models adopted in China and why investors should be cognizant of it before doing business in the country. Gaining this knowledge is useful in promoting investor relations and improving employee relations (Łasak and van der Linden, 2019). Such pieces of information are equally relevant in promoting diversity in the workplace because employees who understand each other’s cultures and traditions are likely to tolerate one another (Hela, 2021). Thus, the current investigation will help in boosting business-to-business and business-to-customer relations.

Literature Review

In this chapter, the influences of philosophy, norms/values, and knowledge management on business culture are examined. These areas of analysis emerge as the anchors of organizational culture and leadership practice in the 21st century. It is important to conduct this analysis due to its relevance in understanding what scholars have written about the research issue. The findings would enable us to understand the position of the current investigation in the broader body of research literature on organizational culture and leadership.

Conceptual Framework

The conceptual framework for the current study describes how information will be analyzed and disseminated to fulfill the intended objectives of the study. In this context of the review, corporate culture and business traditions will be depicted as a product of cultural influences, philosophical origins, and knowledge management practices in an organization. This framework of analysis demonstrates how the three focus areas of the discussion described above intersect to explain how information flow influences corporate culture and traditions in the business setting. The conceptual framework is highlighted in Figure 2.1 below

Conceptual framework 
Figure 2.1: Conceptual framework 

According to the conceptual framework highlighted in figure 2.1above, corporate culture and business traditions, which are represented by “dominant culture” above, are made up of philosophical influences, knowledge management practices, and the cultural values of a society. The interplay among culture, philosophy, and knowledge management in this setup creates a blend of factors that are responsible for influencing employee behaviors and corporate culture. In the conceptual framework above, culture, philosophy, and knowledge management play important roles in influencing human behaviors at various levels of leadership and management (Hartley, Montgomery and Siling Li, 2017). Most researchers who have explored the influence of these factors on corporate culture have done so in the context of international trade (Pande and Kumar, 2020). They have sought to identify unique differences in values and norms across various cultures around the world and their impact on corporate practices.

Broadly, the conceptual framework highlighted in Figure 2.1 above borrows from the experiences of international companies in global business as the basis for understanding corporate culture and traditions. It highlights the importance of creating cultural awareness as the basis for global business development. From this relationship, the conceptual framework provides a model for examining broad-based factors affecting corporate management and leadership practices from a cultural perspective. The framework provides a holistic outlook of leadership and corporate culture development.

History of Corporate Culture

Traditionally, companies operated as centers of production that were supported through organized labor activities. However, recently, the concept of corporate culture has emerged as a new framework for operationalizing business activities with firms being regarded as cultural hubs of production (Łasak and van der Linden, 2019). This shift in perception has been caused by the changing role of organizations in the 21st century – first as a factor of production and later as a center of cultural renaissance.

The traditional version of cultural development in organizational studies traces its roots to the institutionalization of business processes. This change was characterized by the assumption that an organization can assume a life of its own beyond what is defined by its employees or founders (Beeler et al., 2017). As companies acquire immortality in this manner, people attach value to them for what they represent in society and not the identity of the people that work within it (Łasak and van der Linden, 2019). This process started the trend towards institutionalizing organizational processes (Beeler et al., 2017). The intention was to communicate to stakeholders about acceptable, meaningful and appropriate behaviors that are practiced in the organization.

Organization culture emerged from the above-mentioned shift in the role of companies in modern societies. Institutional permanence of culture has been achieved by the acceptance of common modes of behavior that are practiced by all members (Hartley, Montgomery and Siling Li, 2017). This system of conformity is perpetuated through organizational culture and affects all stakeholders involved with a company. It creates and sustains learned behaviors that can predict or explain employee conduct in an organization or a market’s reaction to a product or service in an industry.

The transition of organizational identity from production to cultural hubs means that the brand identity of companies can change. Consequently, one company can assume several identities in its lifetime and perpetuate the same image through culture. Consistent with this trend, multinational companies operating in overseas markets have adopted fluid personalities (Rowley and Oh, 2019). This is why some MNCs are considered more flexible than their competitors while some are deemed more adaptable to the business environment than their rivals (Łasak and van der Linden, 2019). Overall, corporate cultures dictate how well a company adapts to new markets, or fails in this regard. Differences in culture correspondingly mean that firms could have varied levels of success in the same market.

Knowledge Management and Cultural Development

The concept of knowledge management refers to an organization’s ability to maximize the value of information it has to create a competitive advantage over its rivals. Harnessing the collective knowledge of an organization stresses the importance of information utility as opposed to data collection as the purpose of knowledge management (Syed, et al., 2018). The focus on utility suggests that information can be used to improve organizational productivity. Therefore, discussions on knowledge management have an implicit connotation of organizational change attached to it, with a specific emphasis on organizational culture (Beugelsdijk and Welzel, 2018). To this end, knowledge management has evolved from a discipline invested in information management to one that seeks to find out the real impact of information on organizational performance.

In the context of this review, organizational performance is conveyed as a function of organizational culture. This relationship stems from the belief that a person’s attempt to change organizational culture is part of a larger quest for continuous improvement with a predetermined objective of enhancing the competitive advantage of a company (Syed, et al., 2018). In this context of the discussion, knowledge management becomes a part of organizational learning systems.

Knowledge management is linked to employee productivity because it can be used to change people’s behaviors. This change happens within the realm of cultural development in a firm or business environment (Beugelsdijk and Welzel, 2018). This circle of cultural development influences people’s values, beliefs, and norms that make up the culture of a group of people or set of employees (Syed, et al., 2018). A community’s espoused values and assumptions are developed and derived this way. The common outcome is the development of group artifacts that create a common identity or image of a company or an industry (Beugelsdijk and Welzel, 2018). These artifacts may refer to images that people can see but not necessarily understand (Lamb, Hsu and Lemanski, 2020). Some common artifacts may include a company’s logo, or sign that communicates core values to customers, or a dress code that employees share to affirm a company’s brand image.

The values shared by a group of employees refer to a broader set of assumptions about the running of an organization or industry. Core assumptions that support these values are often developed from human nature and organizational systems (Lamb, Hsu and Lemanski, 2020). Organizations that have successfully used them to improve productivity have minimized conflict between leadership and other levels of employee management (Syed, et al., 2018). To realize this outcome, the concept of knowledge management fuses with that of organizational culture. The goal is to modify cultural systems to improve organizational performance. However, the associated processes are complex because culture is designed to reaffirm itself and self-perpetuate (Beugelsdijk and Welzel, 2018). For example, culture is inherently designed to reward those who conform to it and isolate those who do not support the dominant ideology (Syed, et al., 2018). Given that it is founded on learned responses, organizational culture gains longevity and endurance. In this context of the analysis, knowledge management is viewed as an attempt to change the dominant cultural ideology to realize organizational change.

Organizational culture is both an obstacle and a catalyst in knowledge management. The current body of literature has identified cultural barriers that exist in knowledge management and explored solutions for addressing them (Demirtas, 2020). However, knowledge management has a reverse effect of impacting organizational culture in the same manner as culture influences knowledge management (Syed, et al., 2018). This statement means that the effects of both concepts could be felt in two ways where, in the first instance, organizational culture impacts knowledge management and in the second instance, where knowledge management influences organizational culture. The cultural environment that nurtures this relationship influences the quality of interaction between the two concepts.

Different innovative systems have emerged to shape the relationship between culture and knowledge management. The introduction of the enterprise system to organizational management processes has had the biggest impact on the relationship between culture and knowledge management (Demirtas, 2020). These systems capture, integrate, and monitor organizational processes that are critical to the sustenance of a company’s operations (Syed, et al., 2018). These influences have highlighted the importance of enterprise systems as the de facto method through which managers employ knowledge management systems in their organizations (Rowley and Oh, 2019). The interaction between knowledge management systems and organizational culture shows that the latter can have a significant impact on business success but this success is anchored on effective knowledge management systems that could equally affect cultural development.

Knowledge Management through Digital Innovation

Part of the push to change culture has been supported through digital reforms. The focus on digital reforms in this review is justified because digital platforms have made it easier for companies to access international markets (Mattison and Brouthers, 2021). They have also made it possible for consumers to engage more with marketing materials, thereby giving MNCs data to configure their marketing plans (Rowley and Oh, 2019). Consumer engagement is a critical part of their multinational activities because it enhances brand loyalty (Rowley and Oh, 2019). It is similarly associated with a higher commitment to a product or service and an overall enhanced corporate performance (Ganamotse, et al., 2017). Based on this background, managers understand that consumers are likely to respond differently to the same marketing campaign due to cross-cultural differences (Rowley and Oh, 2019). The digital platform has created a new arena where businesses could redefine their consumer engagement strategies for better effectiveness.

When companies venture into new markets, they are often disadvantaged compared to their local counterparts because of the lack of local market knowledge. Consequently, most of them rely on generalized models of determining a market’s cultural inclinations, such as Hofstede’s framework (Krys et al., 2022). However, such systems have been ineffective in understanding the degree of cultural “tightness” or “looseness” that affects organizational performance (Mattison and Brouthers, 2021). This continuum of assessment represents the level that behaviors of members of a society deviate from Hofstede’s cultural cohorts. Hofstede’s measures of cultural inclinations are defined by a six-pillar framework, which includes: power distance index, degree of collectivism vs. individualism , uncertainty avoidance index, inclination towards feminist or masculinity, short-term vs. long-term orientation, and restraint vs. indulgence traits (Corporate Finance Institute, 2022). Figure 2.2 below shows details relating to each cultural feature

Hofstede cultural dimensions theory
Figure 2.2: Hofstede cultural dimensions theory

The concept of cultural “looseness’ ‘ and “tightness’ ‘ mentioned above refers to the degree that people deviate from the above-mentioned cultural cohorts of analysis. According to Figure 2.2 above, in the power distance matrix, countries tend to adopt egalitarian or hierarchical organizational structures. The selection process is determined by many factors among them being the founder’s theories and assumptions on leadership (Leroy et al., 2022). In the collectivism vs. individualism matrix, Hofstede presupposes that companies adopt either collectivist or individualistic attitudes, while in the uncertainty avoidance index, their cultural orientation would be defined by how well they are comfortable with uncertainty (Corporate Finance Institute, 2022). Hofstede also uses the feminist vs. masculinity matrix to define national cultures. A high appetite for power is associated with masculine cultures while the pursuit of natural order is linked to feminine cultures (Leroy et al., 2022). Hofstede’s cultural classification also presents the short-term vs. long-term orientation framework of analysis, which often affects organizational planning activities. It suggests that countries, which have a short-term orientation culture tend to value traditional ways of doing business, while those that have a long-term orientation have a futuristic view of organizational planning (Beugelsdijk and Welzel, 2018). The last category of cultural analysis presented by Hofstede relates to the restraint vs. indulgence scale (Latif et al., 2019). It demonstrates that national cultures that have a restrictive culture tend to accommodate normative beliefs in business, while those that subscribe to an indulgent culture are on a constant quest for satisfaction (Latif et al., 2019). Overall, these cultural cohorts provide a framework for predicting a country’s cultural inclinations.

Hoftstede’s framework has seldom been analyzed within the 21st century cultural context. The current body of literature suggests that the inter-country cultural differences may influence consumer engagement patterns on the digital platform (Krys et al., 2022). The relatively new nature of information technology, compared to other factors of production, accounts for this outcome. Particularly, most authors who have discussed the place of knowledge management in modern businesses have used technology to provide cultural solutions to mundane problems (Beugelsdijk and Welzel, 2018). This strategy has been linked to the process of associating Hofstede’s cultural framework with the goal of digitally sound businesses. Figure 2.3 below espouses the nature of this relationship.

Relationship between Hofstede’s cultural framework and digital transformation 
Figure 2.3: Relationship between Hofstede’s cultural framework and digital transformation 

Figure 2.3 above explains how cultural “tightness” in a society is achieved by relating Hofstede’s cultural elements with digital consumer behavior. The link between the cultural “tightness” concept espoused above and knowledge management stems from data control processes undertaken by various organizations to improve their overall performance. These processes reflect knowledge management practices that inquire about consumer behavior on the digital space (Mattison and Brouthers, 2021). In Figure 2.3 above, consumer behavior in the digital environment is assessed by counting the number of clicks on specific website links and estimating how often consumers share information. Thus, the cultural “tightness” of a society is achieved by identifying the point at which different tenets of Hofstede’s cultural dimensions converge to influence consumer behavior (Mattison and Brouthers, 2021). As highlighted in Figure 2.3 above, some moderating variables that affect this relationship include the kind of products sold, length of advertisement, platform of viewership, average age of the respondents, gender distribution of the target market, income levels of consumers, and the average time they spend online.

Overall, the pieces of evidence described above show that an organization’s cultural inclination is embedded by common knowledge sharing behaviors. Hofstede’s model presents six dimensions for advancing these knowledge-sharing practices with cultural “tightness” being achieved at the point where the six dimensions converge to influence consumer behavior (Mattison and Brouthers, 2021). Thus, it can be deduced from this analysis that the cultural “tightness” or “looseness” of a society depends on the strength of their knowledge management systems. Knowledge management in the digital age forms part of the focus of this assessment and it emphasizes the role of technology in facilitating organizational change at management and leadership levels.

Philosophy as the Foundation of Culture

As highlighted in this chapter, culture is a broad-based concept that embodies norms, beliefs, values, and practices that influence human behavior. A significant body of literature suggests that a symbiotic relationship exists between philosophy and culture (MacKay, Chia and Nair, 2021). Proponents of this view believe that philosophy is an essential part of the cultural make-up of societies (Kornberger and Mantere, 2020). The reason given for holding this belief is premised on the understanding that philosophies are created as a reaction to a specific cultural system (MacKay, Chia and Nair, 2021). Similarly, a different group of researchers believes that philosophies are developed to justify cultural practices (Kornberger and Mantere, 2020). In this context of the analysis, philosophy presents itself as a conduit for which people who practice a specific culture embody specific beliefs, values, practices, and norms (MacKay, Chia and Nair, 2021). The best example to give is in the analysis of the relationship between the philosophy espoused by company founders and the overall culture that emerges in the organizations they lead even after their death.

Business founders who took a bold step and started a company out of their passion or conviction lead many companies today. Largely, these people have taken personal responsibility for the success or failure of their companies (Leroy et al., 2022). Naturally, their beliefs, values, and practices are likely to percolate throughout different levels of management in the organization (Kornberger and Mantere, 2020). Eventually, they form the basis for developing the philosophical foundations of organizational cultures (Leroy et al., 2022). This statement explains why cultures may have different philosophical inclinations.

As highlighted above, the philosophical foundation of company founders dictate the cultural direction that their businesses are likely to follow. Today, some company founders lead their businesses, while people who took the mantle of leadership after the exit of the founders manage others (Leroy et al., 2022). For example, individual company founders lead successful global companies, such as SpaceX, Amazon, and Facebook, while the original business owners do not manage Disney, Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), Apple, and Ford Motors, just to mention a few.

Research studies that have been done in the corporate sector suggest that companies, which are led by their founders, outperform those that are led by other people (Leroy et al., 2022). The reason for this disparity is the varied levels of accountability that managers have with the outcomes of the businesses, compared to the commitment expressed by people who own businesses (Sparre, 2020). Stated differently, a higher percentage of companies run by their original owners have more success because the founders are accountable for the performance of their businesses. Comparatively, companies that are run by employees have a lower accountability threshold, which explains why founder-owned businesses outperform them.

Largely, the relationship between philosophy and culture implies that philosophy is a catalyst of cultural development. Schein model provides a guideline of understanding the evolution of different stages of organizational culture. It suggests that the change should occur in multiple stages (Mamatha and Geetanjali, 2020). The first one involves the introduction of organizational culture by the business founder. Everyone in the organization eventually adopts this culture and it is mainstreamed in policy (Leroy et al., 2022). At this stage of cultural development, organizational culture is likely to represent individual values and aspirations of the business owner (Sparre, 2020). The importance of understanding the cultural inclination of the business owner is hereby presented as the core basis for which the Schein model examines cultural evolution in organizations (MacKay, Chia and Nair, 2021). It is believed that from this source, cultural ideas are disseminated to other levels of employees (Zhang and Zhang, 2018). However, this process of cultural transfer erodes some of the original philosophical features that came from the founder. Therefore, organizational cultures could be abstract versions of original visions of business founders.

Differences in cultural orientation between founder leaders and their successors have dominated the current academic discourse on organizational theories. Most scholars draw their inspiration from the Schein model and believe that founder leaders possess unique values that set them apart from their successors (Mamatha and Geetanjali, 2020). For example, achievement orientation, autocratic governance, and intuitive leadership have been largely associated with founder leaders and not their successors (MacKay, Chia and Nair, 2021). This is largely because project managers depend on raw data and practice inclusiveness to make their decisions, while founders rely on their vision to lead a company. The Schein model has three layers of cultural inclination as described in table 2.1 below.

Table 2.1: Schein Model 

Level Description
Artifacts Artifacts refer to visible aspects of an organization’s culture. These features are difficult to decipher unless one has internal knowledge of organizational systems.
Espoused values Espoused values are developed by managers and refer to strategies, goals, and philosophies governing an organization’s systems. They are intended to guide organizational processes, systems, and employee behaviors.
Basic Assumptions and Values These are unconscious actions taken by employees when dispensing their duties in an organization. They are often taken for granted because they are presented as abstract thoughts and feelings. However, they are the source of values and beliefs in an organization.

The importance of including philosophy using the Schein model described above is to interrogate people’s cultural beliefs and practices. As a reflective practice, philosophy is anchored in people’s lifestyles and behaviors (Leroy et al., 2022). It acts as a form of inquiry that guides human behavior towards adopting a common set of values and beliefs that should ideally capture people’s aspirations (Bolat and Korkmaz, 2021). In this analysis, culture emerges as a pool of data where philosophers can get raw pieces of information and analyze them. This is similar to the case of a researcher conducting an experiment in a laboratory.

The underlying basis for which philosophies are developed means that they can create the foundation of cultural development. This statement means that philosophies can be a positive or negative force in defining employee behavior and predicting market success. For example, business executives have been known to reduce the presence of negative attributes in their corporate cultures by tweaking their philosophies (Bolat and Korkmaz, 2021). Their success has been pegged on their understanding of the relationship between the overall philosophical inclination of a national culture and firm-specific philosophies (Bolat and Korkmaz, 2021). In this analysis, companies that have business philosophies, which are consistent with national cultures, have the greatest success.

Cultural Norms and Values

There is debate regarding the roles played by, cultural norms, and values in shaping corporate culture. Most of the underlying discussions have highlighted cultural differences between leaders operating in western and eastern countries as the basis of the debate (Mamatha and Geetanjali, 2020). In this dichotomous analysis of western and eastern cultures, the focus of the researchers has been on understanding how leaders from both sets of countries respond to specific indicators of leadership and governance (Krys et al., 2022). Consequently, scholars have noted a difference between how leaders in western and eastern countries respond to stress levels as a measure of leadership effectiveness (Mamatha and Geetanjali, 2020). They have also suggested that both sets of leaders have different rankings on the emotional intelligence scale (Beugelsdijk and Welzel, 2018). Furthermore, some researchers have suggested that the managerial orientation of western and eastern leaders towards globalization and localization equally has an impact on their effectiveness levels (Bolat and Korkmaz, 2021). Their views have been instrumental in predicting the success of MNCs in global markets.

Differences between eastern and western cultures draw attention to various value systems underpinning business relationships. The value-attitude behavior model has been used to explain the role of people’s attitudes in influencing consumer behavior. It suggests that societal values influence consumer attitudes and, by extension, their purchasing behaviors (Beugelsdijk and Welzel, 2018). This model can be used with Hofstede’s framework to identify values that would have an impact on consumer behavior (Latif et al., 2019). The model highlighted in Figure 2.3 below was developed after investigating the difference in values between American and Chinese consumers that affected their purchasing behaviors.

Value-attitude model 
Figure 2.3: Value-attitude model 

As highlighted in Figure 2.3 above, individual cultural values, including masculinity, collectivism, uncertainty avoidance, power distance and long-term orientation were included in the model to explain how they influence consumer attitudes by making them receptive or unreceptive to marketing campaigns. The attitudes generated from these influences later determined consumer behavior, which in Figure 2.3 represents the reluctance of Chinese consumers to buy American goods. A practical application of the influence of cultural norms on international business can be found in inter-government trade relations that have been signed in the last decade. Researchers have delved deeper into this subject matter with the works of Gilpin (2021) emerging as being the most relevant to the context of this review. The investigation was based on the evolving bilateral relationship between China and Africa.

On one hand of the debate has been the argument that Chinese companies are exploiting Africa for its raw materials. In this conversation, the Chinese government is accused of providing financial support to countries that have little potential to pay them back (Gilpin, 2021). On the other side of the debate, pundits have hailed China’s involvement in Africa’s economic development for its responsiveness to the capital and labor needs of the continent (Gilpin, 2021). The sheer scale at which Chinese companies have become involved in Africa’s development means that there is more to this relationship than a simple government-to-government bilateral arrangement. Possibly, there is an ongoing undercurrent of change in the way Africa engages with China, which is represented by a change in norms and values of engagement among states and governments involved.

One issue that has emerged from the China-Africa relationship is the shift in values between how traditional Africans viewed development and how the current crop of leaders have reconfigured the continent’s development plan. Historically, Africa has depended on aid to support its economic and social programs (Kohnert, 2018). This model of development has not shown positive results, in terms of improving the overall wellbeing of the people (Kohnert, 2018). Proposed by western countries, this aid-based model contributed to widespread poverty and poor governance in Africa because of weak accountability systems that undermined the effectiveness of such programs (Kohnert, 2018). The model has since changed from an aid-based to a development-based model.

The Sino-African relationship between China and Africa indicates a change in the norms and values of international players in global business and politics. This transformation is because China’s relationship with Africa has given the latter an opportunity to decouple from the global economy by gaining access to development capital from Chinese banks as opposed to traditional financial institutions, such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (Gilpin, 2021). This development model breaks away from the monotony of western capital influences on Africa’s sociopolitical systems (Kohnert, 2018). The shift in Africa’s development model amounts to a change in norms and values of global politics, which eventually affects how governments work and corporations behave in the international system.

It marks a shift from traditional development programs that are linked to western powers to a new liberalized system where countries can choose who to collaborate with. Therefore, the traditional neoliberal principles of economic development are challenged under this new model of collaboration (Gilpin, 2021). If harnessed correctly, this relationship can offer long-term benefits to developing countries, key among them being the liberty to steer development objectives from their domestic viewpoints (Kohnert, 2018). Broadly, the relationship between Africa and China shows how cultural norms and values can be used to challenge dominant ideological views on governance and policy development. These ideological changes could initiate reforms in norms and values that eventually influence people’s behaviors.

A convergence of norms and values in international politics highlights state behavior among countries. For example, the trade policies adopted by European Union (EU) member states are developed from a central point of shared values, norms, and aspirations (D’Erman, 2021). The exit of the United Kingdom (UK) from the EU member bloc provided the first real case where one nation of the EU espoused a different set of values and norms from other member states (Antonucci and Varriale, 2020). This breakdown of relations affected the economic relationship between the UK and its former EU partners (Luckner, 2021). The process led to the onset of negotiations between the UK and the EU about how member states should interact with one another (Kohnert, 2018). The changes in relationship between the two parties show the results of a change in norms and values between partners.

The emergence of nationalistic and protectionist policies among some EU member states marked the departure point between the UK and the EU. Concisely, while the latter was pursuing a philosophy of neoliberalism, the UK was espousing principles of protectionism (D’Erman, 2021). Again, this difference in philosophical orientation marked the departure of the UK in the shared values and norms of intergovernmental engagements that make up the EU (Kohnert, 2018). Thus, from this example, the relevance of sharing common values and norms is highlighted when governments have competing interests in economics, social, and political governance. The same interests are disseminated at corporate governance levels because companies have to adhere to the regulations of s state or government to do business (Anderl and Witt, 2020). Particularly, MNCs have an inherent responsibility of adhering to the laws, policies, and guidelines of international business as they relate to their host countries (Anderl and Witt, 2020). Therefore, the convergence of cultural norms and values at a government level are likely to affect operations of companies within the same jurisdiction.


The scholarly literature analyzed in this chapter has demonstrated the importance of evaluating a country’s culture based on its philosophical roots, knowledge management practices, and norms or values that support it. These aspects of cultural development have an impact on leadership practices and corporate management behaviors because they shape the business environment MNCs operate. Therefore, organizational culture is situated within the broader context of national culture. Stemming from this synchrony of cultural practices, there is a gap in the current literature investigating corporate culture and business traditions due to the lack of context-specific evaluations of cultural and leadership practices. The centrality of the Chinese economy to global commerce highlights the need to evaluate corporate management and leadership practices in the Asian economy. The present study seeks to fill this research gap by creating awareness of the impact of Chinese culture and business traditions on corporate management and leadership.


This chapter highlights the techniques employed by the researcher in meeting the objectives of the study. The chapter is organized according to the research onion model presented in Figure 3.1 below. It outlines a series of methodological stages that researchers follow when conducting academic studies.

Research onion model 
Figure 3.1: Research onion model 

According to Figure 3.1 above, six stages are to be completed for a successful methodology to be done. This framework explains the classification of the methodology chapter as described below.


Figure 3.1 above shows the importance of identifying a research philosophy as the basis of methodological review. A philosophy forms the basis of a research study through the delineation of ontology, epistemology, or axiology (Melnikovas, 2018). The concept of ontology is associated with developing research findings based on evidenced information (Raju and Prabhu, 2019). Alternatively, epistemology is concerned with the source of knowledge or the type of facts presented in a case. Comparatively, axiology is premised on understanding the values, beliefs, and ethics underpinning a study (Melnikovas, 2018). As highlighted in Figure 3.1 above, four main research philosophies emerge from the above classification to anchor academic studies in scholarly literature. They include pragmatism, postmodernism, interpretivism, critical realism, and post-positivism.

Given that the focus of the present study was on examining human behavior within a corporate leadership and cultural framework, the interpretivism philosophy emerged as the best fit for the investigation. It was adopted because it helps researchers to understand the meaning of people’s actions (Melnikovas, 2018). Consequently, researchers can have a better understanding of the respondents’ reality. In this regard, the interpretivism research philosophy made it possible for the researcher to gain a deeper understanding of the cultural and leadership elements underpinning business traditions in China.

Approach to Theory Development

The approach taken by a researcher in theory development is largely influenced by the philosophical choice explained above. Consistent with this reasoning, the interpretivism research philosophy influenced the approach to theory development adopted in this study. Deduction, induction, and abduction techniques are the three major approaches to theory development highlighted in the research onion model (Melnikovas, 2018). The deduction method is focused on identifying one theoretical position and looking for evidence to confirm or reject a hypothesis (Melnikovas, 2018). The induction approach adopts a reverse technique of assessment whereby researchers gather data and investigate them to develop a theory (Raju and Prabhu, 2019). In this process, the review moves form description to analysis and later to the theoretical development stage. Alternatively, the abduction technique strives to make an educated guess about the outcomes of a research problem based on available data (Raju and Prabhu, 2019). In its approach, the abduction method oscillates between induction and deduction techniques to create a synchronized approach to address a research problem (Melnikovas, 2018). Overall, after evaluating the merits and demerits of each of the approaches mentioned, the induction method emerged as the best fit for the current study. Its selection was justified by its alignment with the interpretivism research philosophy, which formed the basis for this research methodology.

Methodological Choice

The methodological choice researchers have to make in an academic study relates to the use of quantitative or quantitative techniques. A mixture of both methods is also accommodated in research investigations but researchers are encouraged to provide justification for their selection (Allibang, 2020). The process of selecting the best methodological choice for the current investigation was informed by the researcher’s quest to meet the objectives of the investigation using the most appropriate technique. Motivated by the quest to meet this goal, the researcher used a mixed-methods framework to undertake the study. The choice of the selection was supported by the importance of evaluating both quantitative and qualitative aspects of corporate culture and leadership. The focus on leadership provided the basis for the qualitative review because the discipline is associated with inspiration, which is a subjective variable (Operational Delivery Profession, 2020). At the same time, the importance of reviewing the research topic through a cultural behavioral analysis provided the basis for including the quantitative aspect of the investigation into the overall analysis. Broadly, the mixed method’s framework provided a holistic foundation for employing both methods in the same study.


The strategy adopted in an academic study relates to techniques adopted by a researcher in collecting and analyzing data. According to the research onion model, scholars can choose their preferred strategic technique from experiments, surveys, archival research, case study, ethnography, action research, grounded theory, and narrative inquiry as the main choices (Melnikovas, 2018). Each of these techniques has its merits and demerits and the motivation for choosing one over another is informed by the objectives of a study. After analyzing how well each of the techniques was consistent with the nature and aim of the present study, the case study method emerged as the best strategic fit for the investigation. Its selection was informed by the focus on China as a case study of corporate management and leadership in the 21st century. Overall, the case study selection made it possible to gain in-depth information on the cultural attributes of Chinese companies to understand the quality of their interaction with foreign companies (Raju and Prabhu, 2019). The case study method equally allowed the researcher to gain in-depth information about corporate management and leadership models used in the 21st century.

Time Horizon

A time horizon analysis examines the period that a researcher uses to complete an investigation. The research onion model highlights two models for analyzing time – cross-sectional and longitudinal (Melnikovas, 2018). The latter technique is associated with the collection of data for a long or extensive period. Comparatively, the cross-sectional technique is associated with the collection of data at one point in time (Melnikovas, 2018). The researcher used this time format to complete the present investigation because information relating to Chinese business cultures and leadership practices were collected at one point in time.

Techniques and Procedures

Data Collection: The data collection process for the present study occurred in two phases. The first one involved the collection of primary data, which were obtained from employees working in Chinese companies. The researcher obtained their views using the questionnaire survey method. As highlighted in appendix 1, the questionnaires were divided into two major sections. The first one involved the collection of demographic data, such as age, gender, positions held in the organization, and work experience. These demographic indicators were included in the study because of their effects on organizational performance (Ahmad, 2020; Lopez et al., 2020). The second part of the questionnaire was divided into three main sections, each exploring one aspect of cultural development in China, including knowledge management, cultural norms/values, and philosophy.

Respondents were requested to tick (✔) on the option that best described their feelings regarding the above-mentioned three core areas of study and perceptions of their relationship with corporate culture and leadership. The 5-point Likert scale provided the basis for measuring these feelings with the informants using five levels of reaction to express their views. The five levels included “strongly agree,” “agree,” “neither agree nor disagree,” “disagree,” and “strongly disagree.” The questionnaires were emailed to the respondents and submitted back to the researcher as completed forms on the same platform. The respondents were recruited using the simple random sampling method because of its unbiased nature (Kim et al., 2018). They came from three companies operating in the Chinese manufacturing, transport, and Information Communications Technology (ICT) sector. Overall, 197 respondents provided complete questionnaires, forming the basis for this review.

The second phase of data collection involved the process of obtaining secondary data, which were derived from reports published by consulting firms, Chinese companies, government agencies, books, and journals. Academic articles available on internet search engines and newspaper excerpts were also included in the review. The keywords used to conduct the secondary data analysis were “corporate culture,” “leadership,” “corporate management,” “China,” and “business traditions.” Materials were obtained from several online databases, including, Emerald Insight, Springer, Research Gate, Google Books, and Sage Publications. The exclusion criterion for materials reviewed was based on the publication date. Stated differently, articles that were older than five years were omitted from the list of final review. At the same time, the inclusion criterion was based on the impact factor score for the articles to be reviewed. Those that had an impact factor of five or nearest to this number were given priority over those that had low scores. The goal of pursuing this strategy was to find the most relevant content for review.

Data Analysis: As highlighted above, the researcher used two sets of data to come up with the findings – primary data from surveys and secondary data from published reports. The Statistical Packages for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software were used to analyze primary data because of its rich history in social science applications (van Wingerde and van Ginkel, 2021). The descriptive and inferential analysis methods were employed using the SPSS software to understand the nature of the relationship between different sets of variables in the study. Data from the secondary research part was analyzed using the thematic and coding method whereby core themes were identified from recurring patterns of information (van Wingerde and van Ginkel, 2021). These themes were later simplified into codes that represented core thematic areas of the investigation. Information relating to the focus zones were later curated and aligned to meet the objectives of the study.

Findings and Discussion

As highlighted in the methodology section of this document, the data collection technique employed by the researcher was designed to collect two sets of data – primary and secondary information. To recap, primary data came from surveys, while secondary data were obtained from published books, journals, credible websites, and other reliable materials. The results of each stage of the investigation are highlighted below.

Primary Data Findings

In the primary data section, the researcher sent out 300 questionnaires to target employees working in three Chinese companies. At the end of the study, 197 respondents sent back complete questionnaires, representing a response rate of 65%. As highlighted in Appendix 1, the informants were expected to complete two parts of the questionnaire. The first one related to the collection of demographic data and the findings are mentioned below.

Demographic Findings

In the first part of the questionnaire sent out to the respondents, participants were expected to give details relating to their professional experiences and personal characteristics that helped the researcher to understand their backgrounds. Five demographic variables were captured in this review and they included age, education qualifications, gender, job rank, and work experience. The findings of the analysis are highlighted below


Gender was the first demographic variable investigated in the questionnaire survey. According to Figure 4.1 below, most of the informants who took part in the study were male.

Distribution of respondents according to gender 
Figure 4.1: Distribution of respondents according to gender 

Additionally, out of the 197 respondents who took part in the study, 53.3% of them were male employees, while 46.7% were female (see Table 4.1 below). This distribution of gender across the respondent group shows no major difference in the number of respondents spread across the gender spectrum. The implication of this finding is that no one gender dominated the findings of the study. Therefore, it could be deduced that the findings were gender-neutral.

Table 4.1: Distribution of respondents according to gender 

What is your gender?
Frequency Percent Valid Percent Cumulative Percent
Valid Male 105 53.3 53.3 53.3
Female 92 46.7 46.7 100.0
Total 197 100.0 100.0

As highlighted in Table 4.1 above, the near equal number of male and female participants took part in the investigation. This outcome suggests that the findings were not gender-biased


The second demographic variable investigated in this study related to the respondents’ age distribution. According to Table 4.2 below, a majority of the informants who took part in the investigation were between the ages of 18 and 30. They represented 46.7% of the total sample of views sampled in the study. Those who were aged between 31 and 40 years formed the second largest group of respondents, which accounted for 23.9% of the total sample.

Table 4.2: Distribution of respondents according to age 

What is your Age?
Frequency Percent Valid Percent Cumulative Percent
Valid 18-30 92 46.7 46.7 46.7
31-40 47 23.9 23.9 70.6
41-50 33 16.8 16.8 87.3
4 2 1.0 1.0 88.3
51-60 22 11.2 11.2 99.5
Above 60 1 .5 .5 100.0
Total 197 100.0 100.0

The smallest group of informants consisted of respondents who were older than 60 years. According to Figure 4.2 below, this group of employees was made up of one person, accounting for 5% of the total sample.

Distribution of respondents according to age
Figure 4.2: Distribution of respondents according to age

The findings highlighted in Figure 4.2 above reveal that a majority of the views presented by the employees were of young people. Given that people who are between the ages of 18 and 30 are Millennials, it can be assumed that a majority of the views presented by the employees about organizational culture and leadership models practiced in China were those of the young generation (Mukanzi and Senaji, 2017). Studies suggest that Millennials tend to be neo-liberalists and prefer to use democratic leadership styles as opposed to all others (Saleem, Shenbei and Hanif, 2020). These characterizations of the majority respondent group imply that their age could influence their views on the research topic. However, a detailed analysis of the influence of age on the findings will be provided in the inferential data analysis part, which appears in subsequent sections of this chapter.

Education Qualifications

It was important to assess the educational backgrounds of the respondents because research studies indicate that this variable could affect employee views on management and leadership (Mukanzi and Senaji, 2017). Thus, the respondents’ work experience was the third demographic variable analyzed in this study. According to Table 4.3 below, this variable was assessed in terms of the highest education qualification attained by the informants.

Table 4.3: Distribution of respondents according to education qualifications

What is your education qualification
Frequency Percent Valid Percent Cumulative Percent
Valid High School 110 55.8 55.8 55.8
Diploma 11 5.6 5.6 61.4
Undergraduate 35 17.8 17.8 79.2
Masters 41 20.8 20.8 100.0
Total 197 100.0 100.0

According to Table 4.3 above, employees who had high school certification formed the largest group of respondents in the study – accounting for 55.8% of the total sample. Those who had a master’s degree formed the second largest group of informants at 20.8% of the total sample, while the smallest group of participants consisted of those who had diploma certification. They accounted for 5.6% of the total sample.

Job Rank

The researcher classified the respondents according to the rank or positions held in their organizations. Five main classifications were provided based on the organizational structures of the employers’ companies – supervisor, administration, contract worker, support staff, and top-level management. Figure 4.3 below shows the distribution of respondents across these rank profiles.

Distribution of respondents according to job rank 
Figure 4.3: Distribution of respondents according to job rank 

According to Figure 4.3 above, most of the informants who gave their views on the research topic were supervisors. They accounted for 30.5% of the total sample population, while top-level managers accounted for 9.1% of the total number of employees who took part in the investigation. A complete list of the percentage distribution of the respondents according to the positions held in their organization is found in Table 4.4 below.

Table 4.4: Distribution of respondents according to job rank 

What is your job rank
Frequency Percent Valid Percent Cumulative Percent
Valid Top-level management 18 9.1 9.1 9.1
Supervisor 60 30.5 30.5 39.6
Administration 46 23.4 23.4 62.9
Contract Worker 49 24.9 24.9 87.8
Support Staff 24 12.2 12.2 100.0
Total 197 100.0 100.0

The importance of evaluating the distribution of employees according to job rank stems from findings of research studies, which show differences in attitude and cultural behaviors among cadres of workers (Hamilton et al., 2021; Tran and Smith, 2021). The effects of the job ranks on the findings of this study will be analyzed in subsequent sections of this chapter.

Work Experience

The last demographic variable sampled in this study related to the informants’ work experiences. It was important to include this analysis in the study because the number of years worked in an organization influences employee perceptions and behaviors (Sarmah et al., 2022). According to Figure 4.4 below, most of the respondents who took part in the investigation had worked for between seven and ten years. This percentage distribution of the respondents implies that employees had acquired sufficient work experience to make informed decisions about organizational culture and leadership.

Distribution of respondents according to work experience 
Figure 4.4: Distribution of respondents according to work experience 

The findings highlighted in Table 4.4 above reveal that the second largest group of respondents had accumulated between 5 and 7 years of work experience. This statistic affirms the fact that most of the participants had garnered sufficient work experience to understand the cultural and leadership practices of their employers. Table 4.5 below shows the statistical distribution of the respondents according to work experience.

Table 4.5: Distribution of respondents according to work experience 

How long have you worked in your organization?
Frequency Percent Valid Percent Cumulative Percent
Valid Less than one year 16 8.1 8.1 8.1
2-5 years 14 7.1 7.1 15.2
5-7 years 65 33.0 33.0 48.2
7-10 years 75 38.1 38.1 86.3
More than 10 years 27 13.7 13.7 100.0
Total 197 100.0 100.0

The findings highlighted in Table 4.5 above demonstrate that most of the respondents had acquired sufficient work experience to make informed decisions about the cultural and leadership questions posed in the study. Collectively, the total number of respondents who had accumulated between five and seven years of work experience accounted for 71.1% of the total number of informants who took part in the study.

Culture, Knowledge Management, and Philosophy

The second phase of the data collection process sampled the views of the respondents regarding the cultural, knowledge, and philosophical underpinnings of organizational culture and leadership in their organizations. Table 4.6 below shows the findings of the impact of philosophy on Chinese organizational culture and leadership.

Table 4.6: Impact of philosophy on Chinese culture and leadership practices

Descriptive Statistics
N Minimum Maximum Mean Std. Deviation
Statistic Statistic Statistic Statistic Std. Error Statistic
Philosophy, Culture and Leadership 197 1 5 1.90 .061 .863
Philosophy, Culture and Leadership 197 1 5 2.00 .067 .937
Philosophy, Culture and Leadership 197 1 5 2.04 .074 1.032
Philosophy, Culture and Leadership 197 1 5 2.48 .064 .901
Valid N (listwise) 197

The statistics highlighted above represent the findings of the first variable in this study – philosophy. According to these findings, the average mean of the responses given by the participants was 2.12. According to the 5-point Likert scale, this number implies that the respondents “agreed” with the assumption that philosophy affects Chinese culture and leadership models. The second variable assessed in this study related to the process of examining the role of knowledge management in the development of Chinese business culture and leadership practices. Four questionnaire items were associated with this variable and Table 4.6 below shows the findings.

Table 4.7: Impact of knowledge management on Chinese culture and leadership practices 

Descriptive Statistics
N Minimum Maximum Mean Std. Deviation
Statistic Statistic Statistic Statistic Std. Error Statistic
Knowledge Management, Culture, and Leadership 197 1 5 3.68 .058 .817
Knowledge Management, Culture, and Leadership 197 1 5 1.27 .036 .509
Knowledge Management, Culture, and Leadership 197 1 5 1.97 .057 .801
Knowledge Management, Culture, and Leadership 197 1 5 1.50 .044 .620
Valid N (listwise) 197

According to the findings of Table 4.7 above, the average mean of the responses given by the informants was 2.1. This number means that they largely agreed with the view that knowledge management affected the cultural makeup of Chinese business culture and traditions. The last variable explored in this study related to the analysis of the role of cultural norms and values in the development of Chinese business culture and leadership models. Table 4.8 below shows the findings of this analysis

Table 4.7: Impact of norms and values on Chinese culture and leadership practices 

Descriptive Statistics
N Minimum Maximum Mean Std. Deviation
Statistic Statistic Statistic Statistic Std. Error Statistic
Cultural Norms and Values 197 1 5 2.29 .086 1.205
Cultural Norms and Values 197 1 5 1.95 .073 1.022
Cultural Norms and Values 197 1 5 2.74 .087 1.221
Cultural Norms and Values 197 1 4 2.38 .075 1.056
Valid N (listwise) 197

According to Table 4.7 above, the average mean of the views presented by the informants was 2.6. This number means that the employees sampled affirmed the view that norms and values affected organizational culture and leadership.

Inferential Analysis Findings

In this study, the inferential analysis was undertaken to interrogate the findings highlighted above. The goal was to investigate the impact of the respondents’ demographic characteristics on their opinions of the research topic. To meet this goal, five inferential analyses were done to investigate the impact of age, gender, work experience, job rank, and educational qualifications on the findings. The relationship between each of these variables and the cultural characteristics of China were examined by exploring the relationship between the respondents’ demographic profiles and the philosophical, knowledge-oriented, and value-led leadership in China. Data relating to the last three items – philosophy, knowledge management, and values -were derived by calculating the means of the four statements associated with each of them. The result was the development of a summary of responses for three variables – philosophy, knowledge management, and values. The effects of each of the demographic factors on the data are highlighted in Table 4.8 below

Table 4.8: Impact of gender on findings 

Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig.
Philosophy Between Groups .653 1 .653 .877 .350
Within Groups 145.316 195 .745
Total 145.970 196
Knowledge Between Groups .734 1 .734 .836 .362
Within Groups 171.266 195 .878
Total 172.000 196
Values Between Groups .105 1 .105 .098 .754
Within Groups 208.646 195 1.070
Total 208.751 196

According to the findings highlighted in Table 4.8 above, gender did not have an effect on the respondents’ views because none of the variables examined met the significance threshold of p<0.05. The same outcome was observed after analyzing the impact of age on the findings of the study because, as shown in Table 4.9 below, none of the variables assessed in the study met the significance threshold of p<0.05.

Table 4.9: Impact of age on findings

Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig.
Philosophy Between Groups 2.579 5 .516 .687 .634
Within Groups 143.390 191 .751
Total 145.970 196
Knowledge Between Groups 2.829 5 .566 .639 .670
Within Groups 169.171 191 .886
Total 172.000 196
Values Between Groups 3.704 5 .741 .690 .632
Within Groups 205.047 191 1.074
Total 208.751 196

The effects of the respondents’ work experience on the findings were also explored in the inferential analysis. According to the findings highlighted in Table 4.10 below, this demographic variable did not affect the views of the respondents because two out of the three variables analyzed did not meet the significance threshold of p<0.05.

Table 4.10: Impact of work experience on findings 

Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig.
Philosophy Between Groups 19.929 4 4.982 7.589 .000
Within Groups 126.041 192 .656
Total 145.970 196
Knowledge Between Groups 1.481 4 .370 .417 .796
Within Groups 170.519 192 .888
Total 172.000 196
Values Between Groups 1.326 4 .331 .307 .873
Within Groups 207.426 192 1.080
Total 208.751 196

Overall, based on the findings highlighted in Table 4.10 above, it could be assumed that the respondents’ work experiences did not influence their views on the research topic. This finding is inconsistent with research studies, which have shown the impact of work experience on employee behaviors (Mukanzi and Senaji, 2017). The same inconsistency in findings was realized after assessing the impact of education qualifications on the views presented in the study. Table 4.11 below shows the results of the analysis

Table 4.11: Impact of education qualifications on findings 

Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig.
Philosophy Between Groups 4.915 3 1.638 2.242 .085
Within Groups 141.055 193 .731
Total 145.970 196
Knowledge Between Groups 2.977 3 .992 1.133 .337
Within Groups 169.023 193 .876
Total 172.000 196
Values Between Groups 1.063 3 .354 .329 .804
Within Groups 207.688 193 1.076
Total 208.751 196

The findings highlighted above show that none of the three variables assessed in the study met the significance threshold of p<0.05. The implication of this finding is that the education qualifications of the respondents did not influence the views of the respondents. The same finding was replicated in the job rank analysis because the data contained in Table 4.12 below shows that none of the variables analyzed met the significance threshold of p<0.05.

Table 4.12: Impact of job rank on findings 

Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig.
Philosophy Between Groups 19.341 4 4.835 7.331 .000
Within Groups 126.629 192 .660
Total 145.970 196
Knowledge Between Groups 2.641 4 .660 .749 .560
Within Groups 169.359 192 .882
Total 172.000 196
Values Between Groups 2.984 4 .746 .696 .595
Within Groups 205.767 192 1.072
Total 208.751 196

Overall, it can be assumed that the demographic characteristics of the respondents did not alter the views of the respondents. This position is supported by the inferential analysis findings described above, which show that most of the variables assessed in the review did not meet the significance threshold of p<0.05. Broadly, the primary data findings represented in this analysis demonstrate that philosophy, knowledge management, and societal values influenced the operationalization of Chinese business culture and leadership practices. These findings were interrogated in the second phase of data collection highlighted below.

Secondary Data Findings

As highlighted in the literature review section of this study, the conceptual framework for this study was designed to present the dominant business culture in China as a broader constituent of three elements of cultural development – philosophy, knowledge management, and values/norms. The primary research findings highlighted above showed that these drivers of cultural development played a significant role in transforming the Chinese business culture. Several research articles were included in this secondary data review to interrogate the primary research findings. The analysis revealed three core themes that identified the dominant business culture in China, the specific philosophical pointer of its growth, and the impact that the country’s norms and values has on its cultural development process. Details relating to these core themes of the discussion are presented below.

Dominant Business Cultures and Leadership Models in China

Business leaders often use culture to influence employee behavior in the workplace. The extant literature on Chinese leadership styles indicated that a collectivist approach is commonly adopted in the country’s leadership (Patey, 2021; Liang and Wang, 2020). The literature review section of this study highlighted the Hofstede model as a framework for analyzing national cultures. Figure 4.5 below shows China’s scores in Hofstede’s 6-D model of cultural analysis.

China’s cultural rankings according to Hofstede model 
Figure 4.5: China’s cultural rankings according to Hofstede model 

According to the findings highlighted in Figure 4.5 above, China’s culture has a long-term orientation and respects a high power distance. Both cultural indicators had the highest scores of 87 and 80, respectively (Hofstede Insights, 2022). The findings equally showed that Chinese culture had the lowest scores in indulgence and individualism scales. This outcome is consistent with research studies that have explored cultural differences between countries in the East and West (Jiang and Kim, 2020; Patey, 2021). The low scores on indulgence and individualism represent China’s appreciation of modesty as a core value (Jena, 2020). Comparatively, western cultures promote individualism and indulgence through consumerism (Marsden and Henig, 2019). Differences between western and eastern nations notwithstanding, various countries subscribe to unique cultures, depending on their religious, political, or economic affiliations (Shakeel, Yaokuang and Gohar, 2020). Understanding these influences could help in identifying practices that shape cultures and traditions in a company (Rowley and Oh, 2019). Based on the findings highlighted in Figure 4.5 above, respecting power distance and the long-term orientation of the Chinese culture would make it easier for investors, or MNCs intending to venture into China, to predict norms, traditions, and values that shape employee behavior (Łasak and van der Linden, 2019). This background highlights the importance of investigating the dominant business culture and leadership style in China.

Confucianism and Chinese Business Culture

Current scholarly research on the field of philosophy and cultural development is still underdeveloped. In the context of the current investigation, it is critical to understand the philosophical underpinning of the dominant Chinese business culture to comprehend its influence on business traditions and practices (Jiao, Xu and Zhao, 2020). This analysis is critical in understanding the philosophical basis for which corporate cultures and leadership practices in China are formed (Kalé, Harland and Moores, 2020). The primary research data presented in this study highlighted the role of philosophy in promoting cultural development. This statement shares a relationship with studies, which have mentioned the influence of Confucianism on Chinese business culture and traditions (Barrowman, 2019; Law, 2021; Liu, 2021). Confucianism emerged as the dominant philosophical underpinning of Chinese culture despite undergoing several modifications due to variations in interpretation.

Chinese business traditions and leadership practices have evolved due to the influences of different stimuli. Demographic changes, government policies, and global economic trends have received the highest mentions as the most disruptive forces in the Chinese business environment (Leggett, 2020). These factors only represent part of the story of the evolution of business traditions and leadership practices in the country. Broadly, Confucianism has remained a central tool in protecting the essence of China’s culture.

The above-mentioned insights demonstrate the philosophical roots of Chinese culture. Indeed, Confucianism is the most commonly recognized philosophical ideology through which China’s norms, traditions, and social systems are built (Xie et al., 2021a). The business cultures adopted by corporate leaders are subject to the same philosophical influences because employee behaviors and practices in China are consistent with Confucianism (Spijkman and de Jong, 2020). Relative to this statement, researchers have mentioned Confucianism as the main philosophical framework inspiring the development of Chinese corporate culture and leadership practices (Xie et al., 2021b; Yuan, Leng, and Wang, 2022). Drawn from its influence in Chinese business circles, this business philosophy has played an inspirational role in shaping business traditions in China (Sun, Habib and Huang, 2021). Broadly, understanding the relevance of Confucianism in China’s cultural development is useful in determining the limits that foreign companies can comply with local business practices or values that are consistent with the business philosophy.

The influence of philosophy on leadership styles was also examined in this study. Scholars have mentioned different leadership models, such as action-centered leadership, competing values framework, charismatic leadership, and Kurt-Lewin’s as some of the most commonly adopted models in modern corporate governance (Caredda, 2022; Deakin and Nicolescu, 2022). The extant literature showed that the top-down leadership style was the most commonly used model in Chinese companies (Wang et al., 2021). Its relation with Confucianism was unclear but the cultural analysis segment showed a significant relationship between the philosophy and Chinese corporate culture (Zhao, Tan and Tsang, 2021). Therefore, it can be assumed that respect for authority, which is a core tenet of Confucianism, explains the widespread adoption of the top-down leadership style in China.

Impact of Business Culture and Leadership Practices on Knowledge Management in China

Knowledge management is an important concept of corporate governance. Its significance to this study stemmed from the understanding that culture is a hub of knowledge (Heindl, 2021). In terms of corporate governance, scholars affirm that information access and utility are critical processes to the success of contemporary firms (Demirtas, 2020). Indeed, we live in an information age and access to data could determine the success or failure of a company (Xiao, 2020). Relative to its importance in corporate governance, effective knowledge management was used to determine the extent to which business cultures and leadership practices in China affected corporate governance outcomes (Gonzalez-Vicente, 2021; Wang et al., 2020). The findings indicated that the tacit nature of knowledge management is a ubiquitous feature of China’s cultural development (Santander Trade, 2021). In this context of the analysis, industry success is defined by the ability of individual companies to share knowledge.

Many people believe that business success is anchored in the commitment of managers to abide by core principles of doing business and making money for their shareholders. In China, this thinking has negated business culture, traditions, and leadership to the periphery of ordinary considerations for corporate success (Bu et al., 2021). Its impact on knowledge management has been rarely studied despite its importance in maintaining the success of contemporary firms in today’s information age (Xiaoping and Tao, 2021). Overall, in this investigation, knowledge management emerged as a determiner of corporate governance success in China, while business traditions and leadership practices moderated this relationship. These findings demonstrate that the primary research data collected at the onset of this chapter were consistent with the secondary research data.

Conclusion and Recommendations


This dissertation focused on analyzing the impact of culture and tradition on corporate management and leadership in China. The justification was to understand the unique characteristics of contemporary business traditions that may affect global business relations. The objectives of the study were designed to enhance relationships between foreign and local investors in China. They were to be achieved by identifying dominant business cultures and leadership models adopted in China and assessing their philosophical roots, value systems, norms, and effects on knowledge management. The findings of the investigation revealed that China’s business culture has Confucianism roots. Therefore, its philosophical origins are traceable to linked ideologies and principles. Knowledge management also emerged as a core platform of cultural engagement and its impact on Chinese cultural development was confined to the adoption of new technologies in the business environment. A community-oriented value system equally emerged as a core theme in Chinese culture.

The contextual factors that are relevant to Chinese society highlighted above could help in explaining why the top-down leadership was accepted in China. The same analysis is useful in explaining why its community-oriented business culture is embraced as the national standard of doing business. In this framework of the review, business cultures and leadership models share a close relationship because both concepts are useful in shaping business traditions. Therefore, leadership models provide a theoretical framework for managing employees. They guide behaviors that shape how people and businesses interact with one another in an organization or workplace setting. Therefore, culture and leadership play an important part in building and sustaining traditions that have been followed across generations of employees.

Overall, in this study, business cultures and leadership practices adopted in China are presented as tools to assess corporate governance outcomes from a knowledge management perspective. This analysis matters to the sustenance of business growth and development because people prefer to do business with those that they like, trust, or share similar values. The zeal to understand Chinese business traditions, culture, and leadership models will help determine how investors address these issues. Indeed, they will explain the nature of core activities to be undertaken in an organization, including business protocol development. Therefore, the relationship between business traditions and corporate governance is operationalized from a knowledge management perspective.


The findings of this study have shown that China’s cultural characteristics affirm differences between eastern and western cultures. Future studies should explore the role that technology plays in bridging this gap. This recommendation stems from the dominant role of Information Communications Technology (ICT) in shaping organizational systems and people’s reaction in the organization. The COVID-19 pandemic and the surge in the number of companies that have embraced remote working affirm the growing importance of technology in shaping human interaction. Future studies can explore the impact of this trend on cultural development.

Reference List

Ahmad, A. (2020) ‘Does additional work experience moderate ethnic discrimination in the labor market?’, Economic and Industrial Democracy, 8(2), pp. 453-467.

Al-Kwifi, O. S., Farha, A. K. A. and Zaraket, W. S. (2020) ‘Competitive dynamics between multinational companies and local rivals in emerging markets’, FIIB Business Review, 9(3), pp. 189–204.

Allibang, S. (2020) Research methods: simple, short, and straightforward way of learning methods of research. London: Sherwyn Allibang.

Anderl, F. and Witt, A. (2020) ‘Problematising the global in global IR’, Millennium, 49(1), pp. 32–57.

Antonucci, L. and Varriale, S. (2020) ‘Unequal Europe, unequal Brexit: how intra-European inequalities shape the unfolding and framing of Brexit’, Current Sociology, 68(1), pp. 41–59.

Barrowman, K. (2019) ‘Lessons of the dragon: Bruce Lee and perfectionism between east and west’, Global Media and China, 4(3), pp. 312–324.

Beeler, B. et al. (2017) ‘Special issue on language in global management and business’, International Journal of Cross Cultural Management, 17(1), pp. 3–6.

Beugelsdijk, S. and Welzel, C. (2018) ‘Dimensions and dynamics of national culture: synthesizing Hofstede with Inglehart’, Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 49(10), pp. 1469–1505.

Bolat, Y. and Korkmaz, C. (2021) ‘Social values and life skills as predictors of organizational culture: a study on teachers’, SAGE Open, 7(2), pp. 1-13.

Bu et al. (2021) The future of digital innovation in China: megatrends shaping one of the world’s fastest evolving digital ecosystems. Web.

Caredda, S. (2022) Leadership models: the theory and the practice. Web.

Corporate Finance Institute. (2022) Hofstede’s cultural dimensions theory. Web.

Deakin, R. and Nicolescu, G. (2022) ‘Socialist fragments east and west: towards a comparative anthropology of global (post-) socialism’, Critique of Anthropology, 42(2), pp. 114–136.

Demirtas, O. (ed.). (2020) A handbook of leadership styles. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

D’Erman, V. (2021) ‘Competing logics of integration: EU trade post-Brexit’, International Studies, 58(2), pp. 219–233.

Duncan, L. R. L. (2020) ‘Identifying the influence of supervisors on strengthening climate and culture for creating value’, Journal of Creating Value, 6(1), pp. 97–118.

Ganamotse, G. N. et al. (2017) ‘The emerging properties of business accelerators: the case of Botswana, Namibia and Uganda global business labs’, Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Emerging Economies, 3(1), pp. 16–40.

García-Canal, E. et al. (2018) ‘Imprinting and early exposure to developed international markets: the case of the new multinationals’, BRQ Business Research Quarterly, 21(3), pp. 141–152.

Gehlen, B., Marx, C. and Reckendrees, A. (2020) ‘Ambivalences of nationality—Economic nationalism, nationality of the company, nationalism as strategy: an introduction’, Journal of Modern European History, 18(1), pp. 16–27.

Gilpin, S. I. (2021) ‘China, Africa and the international aid system: a challenge to (the norms underpinning) the neoliberal world order?’, Journal of Asian and African Studies, 13(1), pp. 1-13.

Godelier, E. (2020) ‘The corporate nationality: a question of culture and community?’, Journal of Modern European History, 18(1), pp. 28–47.

Gonzalez-Vicente, R. (2021) ‘Why critical geopolitics cannot be Confucian’, Dialogues in Human Geography, 11(2), pp. 248–252.

Hamilton, H. et al. (2021) ‘Employee wellbeing: the role of psychological detachment on the relationship between engagement and work–life conflict’, Economic and Industrial Democracy, 42(1), pp. 116–141.

Hartley, J., Montgomery, L. and Siling Li, H. (2017) ‘A new model for understanding global media and China: ‘knowledge clubs’ and ‘knowledge commons’’, Global Media and China, 2(1), pp. 8–27.

Heindl, A.-B. (2021) ‘Does innovation capacity building help regional development? Policy expert narrations on development in China’s “West”’, Journal of Current Chinese Affairs, 50(2), pp. 137–160.

Hela, J. (2021) Leadership and corporate management. London: BFC Publications.

Jiang, F. and Kim, K. A. (2020) Corporate governance in China: a survey. Review of Finance, 24(4), pp. 733–772.

Hofstede Insights. (2022). China. Web.

Jena, D. (2020) ‘To look east or to west? An analysis of India’s trade policy from employment perspective’, The Indian Economic Journal, 68(2), pp. 227–248.

Jiao, J., Xu, D. and Zhao, X. (2020) ‘The development and validation of an intercultural business communication competence scale: evidence from mainland China’, SAGE Open, 3(1), 33-42.

Kalé, S. H., Harland, D. and Moores, K. (2020) ‘Impact of national culture on governance and management of family businesses: Australia versus India’, NHRD Network Journal, 13(1), pp. 73–83.

Khan, M. A. et al. (2020) ‘The interplay of leadership styles, innovative work behavior, organizational culture, and organizational citizenship behavior’, SAGE Open, 4(2), pp. 1-11.

Kim, H. et al. (2018) ‘Evaluating sampling methods for content analysis of Twitter data’, Social Media and Society, 4(2), pp. 1-13.

Kohnert, D. (2018) ‘More equitable Britain-Africa relations post-Brexit: doomed to fail?’, Africa Spectrum, 53(2), pp. 119–130.

Kornberger, M. and Mantere, S. (2020) ‘Thought experiments and philosophy in organizational research’, Organization Theory, 5(3), 1-15.

Krys, K. et al. (2022) ‘Outside the “cultural binary”: understanding why Latin American collectivist societies foster independent selves’, Perspectives on Psychological Science, 8(2), pp. 1-12.

Lamb, P., Hsu, S. W. and Lemanski, M. (2020) ‘A threshold concept and capability approach to the cross-cultural contextualization of western management education’, Journal of Management Education, 44(1), pp. 101–120.

Łasak, P. and van der Linden, R. W. (2019) The financial implications of China’s belt and road initiative: a route to more sustainable economic growth. London: Springer Nature.

Latif, K. et al. (2019) ‘Individual cultural values and consumer animosity: Chinese consumers’ attitude toward American products’, SAGE Open, 7(2), pp. 1-11.

Law, A. M. (2021) ‘Situating strategic or hybrid Confucianism(s): issues and problematics’, Dialogues in Human Geography, 11(2), pp. 257–260.

Leggett, A. (2020) ‘Bringing green food to the Chinese table: how civil society actors are changing consumer culture in China’, Journal of Consumer Culture, 20(1), pp. 83–101.

Leroy, H. L. et al. (2022) ‘Walking our evidence-based talk: the case of leadership development in business schools’, Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies, 29(1), pp. 5–32.

Liang, S. and Wang, Q. (2020) ‘Cultural and creative industries and urban (re)development in China’, Journal of Planning Literature, 35(1), pp. 54–70.

Liu, J. H. (2021) ‘Introduction to Confucian psychology: background, content, and an agenda for the future’, Psychology and Developing Societies, 33(1), pp. 7–26.

Lopez, C. et al. (2020) ‘Examining work experiences among collegiate recreation employees’, Recreational Sports Journal, 44(1), pp. 15–23.

Luckner, J. G. (2021) ‘A Brexit last call: the strange practice of pre-Brexit opt-ins’, Maastricht Journal of European and Comparative Law, 28(4), pp. 556–572.

MacKay, B., Chia, R. and Nair, A. K. (2021) ‘Strategy-in-practices: a process philosophical approach to understanding strategy emergence and organizational outcomes’, Human Relations, 74(9), pp. 1337–1369.

Mamatha, S.V. and Geetanjali, P. (2020) ‘Founder leaders and organization culture: a comparative study on Indian and American founder leaders based on Schein’s model of organizational culture’, IIM Kozhikode Society & Management Review, 9(1), pp. 23–33.

Marsden, M. and Henig, D. (2019) ‘Muslim circulations and networks in West Asia: ethnographic perspectives on transregional connectivity’, Journal of Eurasian Studies, 10(1), pp. 11–21.

Mattison, F. and Brouthers, K. D. (2021) ‘Digital consumer engagement: national cultural differences and cultural tightness’, Journal of International Marketing, 29(4), pp. 22–44.

Melnikovas, A. (2018) ‘Towards an explicit research methodology: adapting research onion model for futures studies’, Journal of Futures Studies, 23(2), pp. 29–44.

Meng, J. (2021) ‘Leadership excellence in corporate communications: a multi-group test of measurement invariance’, SAGE Open, 6(2), pp. 112-122.

Mukanzi, C. M. and Senaji, T. A. (2017) ‘Work–family conflict and employee commitment: the moderating effect of perceived managerial support’, SAGE Open, 7(2), pp. 342-349.

Operational Delivery Profession. (2020) Collaborative leadership — lessons from failure. Web.

Pai, V. S. (2021) ‘Vodafone India Ltd: managing in a turbulent emerging market’, Vision, 25(1), pp. 103–117.

Pande, A. S. and Kumar, R. (2020) ‘Implications of Indian philosophy and mind management for agency conflicts and leadership: a conceptual framework’, IIM Kozhikode Society & Management Review, 9(1), pp. 34–44.

Patey, L. (2021) How China loses: the pushback against Chinese global ambitions. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Syed, J. et al. (2018) The Palgrave handbook of knowledge management. New York, NY: Springer.

Raju, T. and Prabhu, R. (2019) Business research methods. London: MJP Publisher.

Rowley, C. and Oh, I. (2019) ‘Trends in Chinese management and business: change, Confucianism, leadership, knowledge and innovation’, Asia Pacific Business Review, 26(1), pp. 1-8.

Roy, S. N. and Srivastava, S. K. (2017) ‘Global business strategy: multinational corporations venturing into emerging markets’, Vikalpa, 42(2), pp. 125–127.

Saleem, Z., Shenbei, Z. and Hanif, A. M. (2020) ‘Workplace violence and employee engagement: the mediating role of work environment and organizational culture’, SAGE Open, 5(2), pp. 231-244.

Santander Trade. (2021) China: business practices. Web.

Sarmah, P. et al. (2022) ‘Autonomy supportive and controlling leadership as antecedents of work design and employee well-being’, Business Research Quarterly, 25(1), pp. 44–61.

Sparre, M. (2020) ‘Utilizing participatory action research to change perception about organizational culture from knowledge consumption to knowledge creation’, SAGE Open, 9(2), 102-110.

Spijkman, M. and de Jong, M. D. T. (2020) ‘Beyond simplifications: making sense of paradoxical Chinese values in Chinese-western business negotiations’, International Journal of Business Communication, 5(2), pp. 1-12.

Sun, L., Habib, A. and Huang, H. J. (2021) ‘Business strategies and tournament incentives: evidence from China’, Business Research Quarterly, 6(3), 1-13.

Tran, H. and Smith, D. (2021) ‘Talent-centered education leadership: using the employee experience to improve teacher-school relations’, Journal of Cases in Educational Leadership, 24(1), pp. 42–54.

Shakeel, M., Yaokuang, L. and Gohar, A. (2020) ‘Identifying the entrepreneurial success factors and the performance of women-owned businesses in Pakistan: the moderating role of national culture’, SAGE Open, 5(3), 987-998.

van Wingerde, B. and van Ginkel, J. (2021) ‘SPSS syntax for combining results of principal component analysis of multiply imputed data sets using generalized Procrustes analysis’, Applied Psychological Measurement, 45(3), pp. 231–232.

Wang, D. et al. (2021) ‘Managerial cognitive bias, business transformation, and firm performance: evidence from China’, SAGE Open, 4(2), 176-185.

Wang, Z. et al. (2020) ‘Multidimensional perspective of firms’ IT capability between digital business strategy and firms’ efficiency: a case of Chinese SMEs’, SAGE Open, 6(2), pp. 203-214.

Xiao, L. (2020) ‘Innovative application of knowledge management in organizational restructuring of academic libraries: a case study of Peking University Library’, International Federation of Library Associations Journal, 46(1), pp. 15–24.

Xiaoping, B. and Tao, P. (2021) ‘Strategic learning and knowledge management of technological innovation in safety evaluation planning of construction projects’, SAGE Open, 11(4), pp. 1-13.

Xie, T. et al. (2021a) ‘Collective remembering of Confucianism in Chinese language textbooks: official historical representations from 1949 to 2019’, Journal of Pacific Rim Psychology, 6(2), 298-304.

Xie, T. et al. (2021b) ‘How does a historical system of meaning weigh on the present? social representations of Confucianism and their role in young Chinese lives in the people’s republic of China’, Psychology and Developing Societies, 33(1), pp. 73–102.

Yuan, Z., Leng, T. and Wang, H. (2022) ‘Understanding national identity construction in China-ASEAN business discourse’, SAGE Open, 11(1), pp. 210-238.

Zhang, Y. and Zhang, Z. (2018) ‘‘Kexue Wenhua’ in Chinese and ‘scientific culture’, ‘science culture’, ‘culture of science’ and ‘science as culture’ in English: the meanings and the structure’, Cultures of Science, 1(1), pp. 25–37.

Zhao, K., Tan, W. and Tsang, A. K. T. (2021) ‘Indigenization and authentication of epistemology in China’s social work: moving beyond Confucianism, Taoism, and Chinese Buddhism’, International Social Work, 4(1), 109-118.


Appendix 1: Questionnaire

Dear Participant,

Thank you for choosing to participate in this study. The aim of the investigation is to understand Chinese corporate management and leadership models. We rely on your corporate experience to give candid answers on a series of statements that seek your understanding of the philosophical foundations of your corporate culture, knowledge management practices, and cultural norms and values that influence employee behavior. The questionnaire is divided into two sections with the first one capturing your demographic data. The second part will sample your views on the above-mentioned research areas.

Part A

[Please, (✔) tick on the appropriate boxes]

What is your gender?

  • ☐ Male
  • ☐ Female

What is your age?

  • ☐ 18 – 30 years
  • ☐ 31-40 years
  • ☐ 41-50 years
  • ☐ 51- 60 years
  • ☐ More than 60 years

What is your highest education qualification?

  • ☐ High School
  • ☐ Diploma
  • ☐ Undergraduate
  • ☐ Master’s
  • ☐ PhD or higher

What rank do you hold in your organization structure?

  • ☐Top-level management
  • ☐Supervisor
  • ☐Administration
  • ☐Contract worker
  • ☐Support staff

How many years have you worked as a professional?

  • ☐ Less than 2 years
  • ☐ 2-5 years
  • ☐ 5-7 years
  • ☐ 7-10 years
  • ☐ More than 10 years

Part B

In this part of the questionnaire, we seek your views on the relationship between philosophy, knowledge management, cultural norms/values, corporate culture and leadership in your organization. Please, tick (✔) on the option that best describes your feelings on these three core areas of study and their relationship with corporate culture and leadership.

Relationship between Philosophy, Culture and Leadership

Philosophy plays a significant role in shaping corporate culture in China

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

My organization’s culture reflects Confucianism principles

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Our leadership styles are inspired by Confucianism principles

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Foreign companies venturing into the Chinese market have to comply with business practices and values that are consistent with Confucianism

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Relationship between Knowledge Management, Culture, and Leadership

Our company has embraced knowledge management as a core part of its corporate culture

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Knowledge management has reduced the time it takes for new employees to be familiar with our corporate culture

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Effective information management is a critical part of our organization’s leadership approach

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Our corporate culture is preserved through effective knowledge management

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Cultural Norms and Values

The social behaviors and norms we practice in our organization influence employee conduct

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Our internalized corporate values and norms form the basis of employee self-evaluation in corporate culture development

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Employees rely on cultural norms and values to determine acceptable and unacceptable behaviors

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Our social norms and values maintains cultural conformity in the organization

  • ☐ Strongly Agree
  • ☐ Agree
  • ☐ Neither Agree nor Disagree
  • ☐ Disagree
  • ☐ Strongly Disagree

Thank you for participating in the study!

*The End*


Why Choose this Topic?

The growing influence of China on the global political and economic space has generated interest regarding the outlook of business in an interconnected and diverse world. Chinese corporate management and leadership models were chosen because they are important in facilitating business interconnectivity at a macro level. Overall, the study is useful in promoting international trade between China and the rest of the world, thereby contributing to the spread of globalization.

What is the Core Concept?

This study was designed within the human relations framework of international trade. It is predicated on the assumption that improved business relationships can be achieved when there is a high level of cultural understanding and harmony among business partners. Therefore, highlighting unique cultural features of a distinct group of people is deemed the first step to promoting international trade from a human relations perspective. We designed the topic to adopt a people-centered view of global trade because corporate culture and business traditions are perpetuated through employee behaviors, attitudes, and actions.

What Information was Referenced?

Books, journals, and credible websites provided the foundational materials for developing this study’s findings. Emphasis was made to use peer-reviewed research materials to achieve a high level of data validity and reliability. Additionally, we achieved the same goal by setting the inclusion criterion to include materials that were published within the last five years (2017-2022). Information obtained from credible websites included materials that were published by institutions, corporations, and government agencies.

What Research Method was used?

Mixed methods research method was used, it combines both qualitative and quantitative data in research. The framework was designed to collect two sets of information – primary and secondary. Primary data came from surveys, while secondary data were obtained from published books, journals, and credible websites. This data was analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 23 software.

What are your Ideas about this Paper?

I believe that the present research on Chinese corporate management and leadership models is timely because of the growing influence of China on international trade. However, the findings presented in this study are generalized because they describe broad cultural inclinations of the Chinese people without reference to industry nuances or gender differences that characterize the behaviors of people in the country’s business environment. Therefore, future studies could investigate differences in business traditions and culture across different industries and genders in China.

Introduction to Literature Review Part

In the literature review part, we sought to investigate what other scholars have written about the research topic. The first step involved understanding the historical foundation of corporate culture. The goal was to comprehend its inner workings and importance to organizational success. In the second phase of the investigation, we explored the role of knowledge management in cultural development. The purpose of undertaking this analysis was to understand the role of culture as a product of transferable knowledge, which is perpetuated through people’s behaviors and attitudes in business.

Discussions on the interaction of knowledge management and technology in influencing people’s behaviors in global business formed part of the review as well. The important role played by technology in shaping the modern business landscape justified its inclusion in the analysis. The last two sections of the literature review explored the role of philosophy in influencing culture. In this part of the analysis, we held the assumption that business cultures stemmed from one philosophical source. Therefore, understanding the philosophical foundation of culture was important in predicting its effects on people’s behaviors. This discussion was extended to exploring the influence of philosophy on modern business norms and values in China.

Artificial Intelligence in Business Management
Touchscreen Proposal and Operation Management Plan