Foreign managers are advised to develop effective relationships with Chinese employees who as collectivists are thought to value relationships, particularly guanxi, with their leaders. However, foreign managers typically do not have the background and prior experiences typically used to develop guanxi in China. In an experiment with 120 participants in South China, Chinese employees with foreign managers who communicated that they wanted a relationship (compared to no relationship) with them concluded that they interacted better and had little relational and task conflict. Chinese employees who discussed their views within a cooperative (compared to competitive) context helped their leader, productively integrated their diverse views into the decision, and concluded that they had little relational and task conflict.
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