Team effects of bicultural individuals: insights from football team performance




Szymanski, Michal

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The recent wave of globalization triggered by the end of the Cold War and stimulated by progressing liberalization of trade and international migration policies has led to a significant surge in numbers of bicultural individuals, i.e. people with more than one ethnic identity (Nguyen & Benet-Martinez, 2007), and thus, a surge in bicultural employees. An emerging stream of research from psychology and organizational studies indicates that bicultural individuals have a particular set of skills and competencies that can contribute to the performance of international teams and, in turn, organizations. However, to date there has not been a large sample empirical study investigating the oft-stated relationship between biculturals and performance. This dissertation seeks to fill this gap in the literature by examining said relationship by relating the composition of national association football teams to results in six consecutive FIFA World Cup and six UEFA European Championship tournaments (i.e. the results of 272 teams in 12 competitions). The results indicate that biculturalism improves team performance when moderated by the cultural diversity of the competitive environment of the team.



biculturals, team diversity, team performance, cross-cultural management, global leadership skills