Publication Details

Vo, A. & Hannif, Z. N. (2013). The reception of Anglo leadership styles in a transforming society: the case of American companies in Vietnam. International Journal of Human Resource Management, 24 (18), 3534-3551.


This article examines the transfer of Anglo leadership styles in a transforming society. It aims to investigate the transferability of two American leadership styles, namely performance-oriented and participative styles, to Vietnamese subsidiaries. Utilising an exploratory case study approach, this article presents evidence of a strong acceptance of these leadership styles, and tries to ascertain whether the adoption of a humane style of leadership in line with Vietnamese traditions is a means of leaders reconciling the cultural gap. Several complexities arise from the transforming nature of the Vietnamese socio-political and economic context. Specifically, the importance of subcultures - particularly those relating to generation - is highlighted. Situational contingencies, such as the skills set of the recipient group, also emerge as important considerations. Finally, the authors call for leadership dynamism as a means of facilitating congruence and adaptability between the leadership styles used and the various contextual complexities encountered in the transfer and reception process.

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