Reading

Publications by Gabor Holch in English

Virtual Humanity: Culture still matters in online teamwork

Sterile, orderly and efficient remote-work solutions still feature  conflicts between different workstyles.

Read in EUROBiz Online.

Hide and seek: Cooperation and competition in China-US relations

A SWOT analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats in a mixture of cooperation, competition, coersion and codependince in China-US relations.

Read in Asia Power Watch.

Business lessons from China’s Covid-19 transparency policy

Debates over the reliability of China's Covid-19 statistics have far-reaching lessons for business decision-makers.

Read in Asia Power Watch.

Lost in Translation

Culture clashes between global headquarters and China branches.

Read in EUROBiz Online.

Corss-Cultural Leadership Skills are Not What You Think

Engage your teams through individual strengths to create trust, community and results rather than emphasizing cultural differences.

Read in Chief Learning Officer Magazine.

People Development: Stop Spending, Start Thinking

Acknowledinging the battle between our modern urge to consume and the instictive need to grow is essential for productive people development.

Read in Chief Learning Officer Magazine.

Leading millennials: The disruptive return of a million-year dillemma

Research on millennials makes fascinating reading. Never before have we dedicated so much time and effort to understanding the talents, needs and tastes of next-generation workers. But results don't come easily.

Read in EUROBiz Online.

book cover Gabor Holch Economic Relation

Economic Relations and Political Dialogue between the EU and East Asia (VDM Verlag, 2009)

Despite their historical ties, interaction between the European Union and East Asia was long restricted to little more than trade and development projects between certain European nations and their former Asian colonies. The book deals with the role the European Union plays in the East Asian region, based on my research in international relations and diplomacy at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna and afterwards. (Click the cover for details.)

Recommended Books on Culture and Leadership

Books by experts and academics at the cutting edge of intercultural leadership are a major source of this blog and my consulting solutions. I read (and re-read) each book in this carefully selected list, and some of the authors have supported my work in person. They represent the latest & greatest in decision-making, neuroscience, intercultural management and much more, and I do believe that reading them with the right attention can be a life-changing experience. 

The Culture Map
The Culture Map cover.png

One of the best intercultural business books ever written, whose Amazon introduction does a perfect job: " Whether you work in a home office or abroad, business success in our ever more globalized and virtual world requires the skills to navigate through cultural differences and decode cultures foreign to your own." Meyer stays away from cultural clichés, doesn't deny how emotional we get when our cultural concepts are challenged ("discussing cultures is like discussing mothers"), and leaves the reader with practical suggestions. (Click the cover for details.)

Cross-Cultural Management
book cover Cross-Cultural Management Ngu

For those who are willing to invest their time, money and brain power on the high end, this book by cross-cultural academic Mai Nguyen-Phuong-Mai will be an eye-opener. Building on an extensive volume of previous research, Nguyen redefines cross-cultural management for the requirements of the 21st century, showing that it must follow cultures that dynamically evolve over time, just like societies and markets do. The book presents conclusions that business leaders can directly apply in global strategy, human resources, change and performance management. (Click the cover for details.)

Leadership and Management in China
book cover Leadership and Management in

Leadership cultures in China is a woefully misunderstood and under-researched topic, fraught with simplistic stereotypes. To my knowledge, Amazon's introduction correctly claims that "this is the first book to explain how ancient Chinese thinking and Western ideas have shaped the development of leadership styles in China. Leadership theories associated with Confucianism, Daoism, Legalism, the Arts of War, and the writings of Mao and Deng are analysed by both Chinese and Western experts". Extensive case studies from China, and Chinese businesses abroad make this book an essential manual for executives doing business in or with China. (Click the cover for details.)

HBR's 10 Must Reads on Managing Across Cultures
book cover HBR's 10 Must Reads on Managi

Must-read is not an exaggeration in this case: this volume contains paradigm-shifting articles in intercultural management and leadership. My personal favourite is "L'Oreal Masters Multiculturalism" by Hae-Jung Hong and Yves Doz, a practical case study showing how this cutting-edge organisation manages intercultural talent in creative ways. (Click the cover for details.)

Genes vs Cultures vs Consciousness
book cover Genes vs Cultures vs Consciou

An extremely creative booklet that elaborates on Hofstede's original idea that cultures are differently coded software for the mind. With this, the author disruptively kicks the concept of intercultural comparison into the information age, touching upon various fields including behavioural science, neuroscience, evolutionary theory, cognitive science, information technology and artificial intelligence.   (Click the cover for details.)

Leading with Cultural Intelligence
book cover Leading with Cultural Intelli

Leading with Cultural Intelligence is a widely used textbook on intercultural leadership. Although much of its content is too conventional for my taste, the author also places some widespread but simplistic leadership advice into a practical context. I also find the book's cases, some first-hand and some collected, quite useful.  (Click the cover for details.)

The Leading Brain

The understanding of how our brains work has radically shifted, exploding long-held myths about our everyday cognitive performance and changing the way we engage and succeed in the workplace. Combining expertise in both neuropsychology and management consulting, neuropsychologist Friederike Fabritius and leadership expert Dr. Hans W. Hagemann (my colleague at the Munich Leadership Group) present powerful strategies for achieving top performance, cultivating trust and building strong teams. Based on global leadership programs, some of which I personally delivered, it has what you always wanted to know about the brain and leadership, but may have been afraid to ask. (Click the cover for details.)

Uncommon Sense in Unusual Times
book cover Uncommon Sense in Unusual Tim

In this creative booklet, developer of the Global DISC assessment system Csaba Toth starts from his highly personal encounters with intercultural existence, and ends up with a detailed introduction of the scientific principles underlying his behavioural profiling and coaching system. Best of all, like similar books introducing profiling  tools, purchasing the book includes a free Global DISC assessment and practical tips for interpreting, applying and sharing its results. (Click the cover for details.)

The Age of Pluralism
The Age of Pluralism David Clive Price c

True to the changing nature of business and global leadership, David's book combines seemingly contradictory approaches to working across cultures: the personal, the professional and the poetic. This makes it an enjoyable read, while it also offers an insight into two powerful methodologies that would otherwise take many more hours of reading time. One is the Bamboo Strong method from his previous book from that title. Another is the Global DISC personality assessment method, which is used by leading multinationals to align their management teams' personal strengths with the requirements of international leadership jobs. (Click the cover for details.)

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