A&M International Student Explores Cross Cultural Management

In her native country of Uzbekistan, in the former Soviet Union, Nuria Gabitova, a Texas A&M International University business student, has heard of the difficulty foreigners often face when managing employees with cultural backgrounds completely opposite their own.

That is why the topic of cross cultural management was her natural choice when presented with a research option in her organizational behavior class.

Gabitova, who is pursuing a master's degree in business administration (MBA), narrowed her topic a little, however, and called her research paper "Employee Incentives in Small Businesses in Emerging Markets."

Gabitova's paper, written with David Gillies, another A&M International MBA student, explores employee incentives foreign employers could use when managing small businesses in developing countries, and it was recently published in the Society for the Advancement of Management Journal.

The paper, which identifies cultural, economic and political factors as the key considerations managers must take into account when managing a business in a foreign country, received positive reviews from both scholars and corporate managers attending the Society for the Advancement of Management Annual Meeting in Las Vegas recently.

"I think the paper will be useful for both managers and researchers because it's a timely issue managers must consider when launching a business in a foreign country," she said, "Most of the human resource management approaches are designed by Americans for Americans and may not be applied successfully in foreign countries."

The possibility of opening her own business consulting firm upon graduation also prompted Gabitova to research cross cultural management in-depth, she said.

"This may lead to a new career for me and it may diversify the services that my (consulting) company will offer," she said. "The failure of businesses to adapt to foreign cultures may cost them dearly, and it is better for them to be prepared than to suffer the consequences," she added.

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