Impact of the National Culture on Female Leadership Styles : How does Turkish culture impact on female leadership styles in Turkey?
Abstract: The culture demonstrates itself in the shared values, attitudes, beliefs, norms and behaviours of people and it is distinguished from each other by differences in those shared meanings of people interacting. As culture is varied across countries, leadership styles are also varied across countries and are not exercised in the same way across different cultures. They are imported in accordance with the cultural environment in which they are perceived. Therefore, understanding the culture is significant in order to explain preferences of leaders concerning leadership styles. The main purpose of the present dissertation is to provide an overview of the relationship between Turkish culture and the way in which leadership is exercised by Turkish female leaders. The present study is completed in three steps in order to demonstrate that the existing relationship between the Turkish culture and leadership styles of female leaders in Turkey. In the first step, the study examined what culture is, what dimensions of the national culture are, what leadership is and how leadership styles are culturally-linked. In the second step, the paper investigated how female leaders perceive and exercise different leadership styles across different cultures. In the third step, the study researched what cornerstones of Turkish culture and how anticipated leadership styles of Turkish female leaders are shaped by Turkish culture. The study followed a qualitative research approach based on the grounded theory. Ten female leaders coming from different backgrounds were interviewed in order to draw a holistic picture of the relationship between Turkish cultural values and leadership styles of Turkish female leaders. The findings of the study indicate that the Turkish culture has an influence on leadership styles of Turkish female leaders. According to the results, while Islamic values have no significant impact on leadership behaviours of female leaders, such cultural attributes as collectivism, high power distance, uncertainty avoidance and paternalism have a huge impact on leadership styles of Turkish female leaders. The research examined only leadership styles of Turkish female leaders. Therefore, this study recommends a future research which will investigate leadership styles of Turkish males in order to understand whether gender has also an effect on leadership styles of Turkish leaders.
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