A Gap Between Theory and Practices: Best Leadership Practices in Multinational Corporations: An Egyptian Case Study

Asmaa M.S. Ibrahim


Purpose – This research aims to describe leadership practices that fit into Egypt national culture, in Multinational Companies (MNCs) work environment. Taking two of the top companies in leadership field as an example, this research helps in presenting guidelines for the best leadership practices for MNCs, operating in Egypt.Design/methodology/approach – This research employed qualitative case study, using semi-structured interviews. Two-case studies were conducted to reach more comprehensive findings. Findings –Leadership practices associated with Egypt’s national culture are macro managing employees; involving employees in decision making;  providing clear vision and objectives; maintaining context which includes providing clear rules and guidelines, coaching employees, maintaining a follow up system on employees performance  and maintaining a clear rewarding and penalizing system; and focusing on humane aspects which includes managing conflicts, keeping employees in harmony and considering individuals’ differences. Implications– This research highlights a gap between theory and practice. Some of the presented leadership practices presented in this research contradict with the literature’s classification for Egypt’s’ national. This indicates that further research work should be conducted to generalize findings.Originality/value –The research emphasizes that there is a shift in people’s perception towards best leadership styles and practices. The cultural aspects identified in this research challenges the classification of Egypt as high power distance and masculine society. Further, findings present new prospective for some of the leadership practices. The paper also proposes that short-term orientation is also a cultural aspect associated with workplace.

Keywords: National culture, Humane-orientation, Short-term orientation, Leadership practices, Individualized consideration, Employees’ performance, Case study, Interviews analysis techniques

DOI: 10.7176/DCS/9-3-07

Publication date:March 31st 2019

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ISSN (Paper)2224-607X ISSN (Online)2225-0565

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