Designing for cultural diversity in an IT and globalizing milieu: Some real leadership dilemmas for the new millennium
This paper explores the effects of information technology (IT) on the eve of the third millennium, and its ramifications for labour organization, business and culture. IT is conceptualized as a catalyst for a period of seminal change within the global economy. The lack of IT awareness, social diversity and the need to tap the creative synergy of socio-cultural differences, through the better understanding of IT effects on culture are highlighted. A need for self-reflection and a critical examination of adopted management models, especially those within embedded ethnocentric contexts of shared beliefs, values and cognitive structures, are also explored. It is argued that organizations need to learn to manage cultural diversity. The need for development of organizational ideologies that build on cognitive structures, culturally sensitized to diversity, is central to a generic strategy for managing increasingly culturally diversified organizations comprising the globalized economy in the third millennium.