Guanxi and leader member relationships between American managers and Chinese employees : open-minded dialogue as mediator

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)

101 Citations (Scopus)


Effective open relationships with employees can help foreign managers rely upon and utilize the local knowledge of their employees. One hundred and sixty-three Chinese employees from various industries in China were surveyed on their relationships (leadership-member relationship and personal guanxi) with American and Chinese managers, their constructive controversy, that is, their constructive controversy with them, and the job assignments and promotions received from their managers. Results support the hypotheses that quality leader-member relationship and personal guanxi promoted their constructive controversy, which in turn facilitated employees receiving challenging jobs and promotions. Results suggest that leader-member relationship and Chinese value of guanxi may be important for enhancing their constructive controversy; this kind of open dialogue can be a foundation upon which American managers can develop the confidence to give their Chinese employees challenging tasks and promotions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-189
Number of pages19
JournalAsia Pacific Journal of Management
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2007



  • Guanxi
  • Leader-member relationships
  • Open-minded dialogue

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