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EAM International 2017

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Developing minority leaders: Key success factors of Asian Americans

Track: OB

Keywords: Asian Americans, culture, minorities, leader development, leadership

Our research employs a culture-specific approach to understand the unique needs of minority leaders, namely, Asian Americans because they are least represented in U.S. management ranks, despite having the most education, training, and work experience. First of its kind qualitative study with 39 executives identified eight key success factors of Asian American leaders (i.e., qualities that promote upward mobility): Cultural Acumen, Rules of Success, Leadership Branding, Communication, Social Decorum, Leadership Aspiration, Career Determinism, and Cultural Inclusion. Results offer guidance for individual leadership development and for organizations to develop culture-specific leadership interventions that complement current mainstream training approaches.


Thomas Sy
University of California
United States

Susanna Tram-Quon
University of California
United States

Alex Leung
University of California
United States


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