The impact of cross-cultural factors on global key account management

Lautenschläger, Christian (2020) The impact of cross-cultural factors on global key account management. Doctoral thesis, Anglia Ruskin University.

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The present research is the first study, which investigates the impact of cross-culture on key account management. The current academic knowledge in this subject is limited, and therefore, essential research questions in global key account management remain unanswered. Further investigations are required. The research methodology in this study is following a quantitative approach, using a questionnaire for collecting primary data from respondents. The questionnaire, consisting of 46 closed-ended questions, has been designed in English and further translated into Spanish, Chinese and Japanese. The questionnaire has been published globally in a web-based format. The target audience were sales professionals, including key account managers. In the study, 432 respondents from various cultural regions completed the questionnaire. First, the study demonstrates that those regions differ significantly in their cultural dimensions and therefore have an impact on key account management. Around 30.5% of respondents provide evidence that their companies experience issues in key account management, according to cross-culture. Organisations with an institutionalized key account management program are less affected to cross-cultural failure compared to implemented key account management. Furthermore, to overcome those cultural barriers, 55.5% of the sales organisations put efforts in providing guidelines and training to work cross-culturally. The study also demonstrates that corporate functions with close interactions and touchpoints to key account management, such as top management, are more aware, prepared and supportive of the needs of cross-cultural key accounts. In conclusion, the present study proofs that sales organisations experience cross-cultural challenges in their key account management programs. The variances in the respective cultural dimensions between sales organisations and key accounts require a learning organisation, so that cross-cultural challenges within the key account process are timely identified and managed adequately. Finally, this study provides the first configurational framework on cross-cultural key account management and therefore lays the foundation for further investigations into international business.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Keywords: Key account management, global key account management, cross-cultural management, cultural dimension, cultural distance, psychic distance
Faculty: Theses from Anglia Ruskin University
Depositing User: Lisa Blanshard
Date Deposited: 09 Aug 2021 11:00
Last Modified: 09 Sep 2021 18:52

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